Bad Dirt: Wyoming Stories 2 (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Simon and Schuster, Nov 30, 2004 - Fiction - 240 pages
30 Reviews
The stories in Annie Proulx's new collection are peopled by characters who struggle with circumstances beyond their control in a kind of rural noir half-light. Trouble comes at them from unexpected angles, and they will themselves through it, hardheaded and resourceful. Bound by the land and by custom, they inhabit worlds that are often isolated, dangerous, and in Proulx's bold prose, stunningly vivid.
In "What Kind of Furniture Would Jesus Pick?" rancher Gilbert Wolfscale, alienated from his sons, bewildered by his criminal ex-wife, gets shoved down his throat the fact that the old-style ranch life has gone. Several stories concern the eccentric denizens of Elk Tooth, a tiny hamlet where life revolves around three bars. Elk Toothers enter beard-growing contests, scrape together a living hauling hay, catch poachers in unorthodox ways. "Man Crawling out of Trees" is about urban newcomers from the east and their discovery, too late, that one of them has violated the deepest ethics of the place. Above all, these stories are about the compelling lives of rapidly disappearing rural Americans.
Through Proulx's knowledge of the history of Wyoming and the west, her interest in landscape and place, and her sympathy for the sheer will it takes to survive, we see the seared heart of the tough people who live in the emptiest state. Proulx, winner of the Pulitzer, the National Book Award, and many other prizes, has written a collection of spectacularly satisfying stories.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Notesmusings - LibraryThing

Bad Dirt is the second volume of Wyoming Stories. For me it did not reach the same heights as Close Range. In Bad Dirt there are more departures from realism and more use of the folksy yarn, less of ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - flydodofly - LibraryThing

Proulx is a born storyteller, and Wyoming is her home, or one of them. She knows it well and cen tell a story or two about the rough, but wonderful country and its people. Read full review

About the author (2004)

Annie Proulx is the author of eight books, including the novel The Shipping News and the story collection Close Range. Her many honors include a Pulitzer Prize, a National Book Award, the Irish Times International Fiction Prize, and a PEN/Faulkner award. Her story “Brokeback Mountain,” which originally appeared in The New Yorker, was made into an Academy Award-winning film. Her most recent book is Fine Just the Way It Is. She lives in Wyoming.

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