The Heaven of Mercury


Product Details

W. W. Norton & Company
Publish Date
5.5 X 1.0 X 8.5 inches | 1.0 pounds
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About the Author

Brad Watson (1955--2020) taught creative writing at the University of Wyoming, Laramie. His first collection, Last Days of the Dog-Men, won the Sue Kauffman Award for First Fiction from the American Academy of Arts & Letters; his first novel, The Heaven of Mercury, was a finalist for the National Book Award, and his Aliens in the Prime of Their Lives was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction.


A fast-paced, myth-echoing, tragic-comic commentary on our modern lives.
Watson imbues his work with an elegance that sets it apart from the rest.
[A] lushly written novel of Deep Southern dream and landscape.
Gimcrack storytelling...grounded by generous humanity.
[A] superb novel, graced with lush and exciting prose in the Southern high rhetorical tradition.
A vivid mythology of a small Southern town that moves to a strange, electrifying beat.
[Watson's] work may remind readers of William Faulkner, Toni Morrison, or Flanner O'Connor, but has a power--and a charm--all its own.--Merle Rubin
[A]n unforgettable story...The accidents, the disappointments, the corrections, and the secrets each life contains are woven into a deeply sympathetic portrait of small town life at its worst and best.
Sort of a calm wail. Each page a deep pleasure.--Barry Hannah
The Heaven of Mercury is a tragicomic story of missed opportunities and unjust necessities that wittily explores the souls of its highly colorful cast of characters. It is suffused with an almost savage lyricism that illumines every accurate detail and nuance of place and speech. The light this novel casts is so brilliant it makes even its own shadows luminous. Brad Watson has struck a fresh and thrilling note.--Fred Chappell