A Permanent Member of the Family (Compact Disc)
If you want a master class in writing,
read anything by Russell Banks. In his new collection of stories linked
by their humanity, each of his characters tries to come to terms with a
new situation in life. Funny, but touching, down to earth with moments
of great hope and possibility, these stories set in Florida and upstate
New York change your vision and stay with you a long time.
Suffused with Russell Banks's trademark lyricism and reckless humor, the twelve stories in A Permanent Member of the Family examine the myriad ways we try--and sometimes fail--to connect with one another, as we seek a home in the world.
In the title story, a father looks back on the legend of the cherished family dog whose divided loyalties mirrored the fragmenting of his marriage. "A Former Marine" asks, to chilling effect, if one can ever stop being a parent. And in the haunting, evocative "Veronica," a mysterious woman searching for her daughter may not be who she claims she is.
Moving between the stark beauty of winter in upstate New York and the seductive heat of Florida, Banks's acute and penetrating collection demonstrates the range and virtuosity of both his narrative prowess and his startlingly panoramic vision of modern American life.