The Last Carousel

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Seven Stories Press, 1997 - Fiction - 435 pages
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The fiction and reportage included in The Last Carousel, one of the final collections published during Nelson Algren's lifetime, was written on ships and in ports of call around the world, and includes accounts of brothels in Vietnam and Mexico, stories of the boxing ring, and reminiscences of Algren's beloved Chicago White Sox, among other subjects. In this collection, not just Algren's intensity but his diversity are revealed and celebrated.
 

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The Last Carousel

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This 1973 volume was reprinted along with Algren's 1986 The Neon Wilderness. Together they offer both short stories and nonfiction pieces dealing with the baser elements of life presented by someone who knew them well. (Classic Returns, LJ 10/15/97) Read full review

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Contents

Dark Came Early in That Country
1
Could World War I Have Been a Mistake?
18
Otto Premingers Strange Supenjers
21
I Never Hollered Cheezit the Cops
37
The Mad Laundress of DingdongDaddyland
63
Tinkle Hinkle and the Footnote King
69
with the grabstand clowns of arts and letters
74
Come In If You Love Money
83
Previous Days
209
The Man with the Golden Arm
225
A Story from Lifes Other Side
226
Merry Christmas Mr Mark
229
I Guess You Fellows Just Dont Want Me
231
Everything Inside Is a Penny
236
The Ryebread Trees of Spring
250
Different Clowns for Different Towns
257

Brave Bulls of Sidi Yahya
97
I Know Theyll Like Me in Saigon
111
Airy Persiflage on the Heaving Deep
117
No Cumshaw No Rickshaw
125
Letter from Saigon
131
What Country Do You Think Youre In?
138
Police and Mamasans Get It All
144
Poor Girls of Kowloon
151
After the Buffalo
164
The Cortez Gang
178
The House of the Hundred Grassfires
192
Go Go Go Forty Years Ago
262
The Swede Was a Hard Guy
268
A Ticket on Skoronski
299
Ode to an Absconding Bookie
311
Bullring of the Summer Night
314
Moon of the Arfy Darfy
352
Watch Out for Daddy
367
The Last Carousel
398
Trick Out of Times Long Gone
429
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About the author (1997)

One of the most neglected of modern American authors and also one of the best loved, NELSON ALGREN (1909-1981) believed that "literature is made upon any occasion that a challenge is put to the legal apparatus by conscience in touch with humanity." His own voluminous body of work stands up to that belief. Algren's powerful voice rose from the urban wilderness of postwar Chicago, and it is to that city of hustlers, addicts and scamps that he returned again and again, eventually raising Chicago's "lower depths" up onto a stage for the whole world to behold. Recipient of the first National Book Award for fiction and lauded by Hemingway as "one of the two best authors in America," Algren remains among our most defiant and enduring novelists. His work includes five major novels, two short fiction collections, a book-length poem and several collections of reportage. A source of inspiration to artists as diverse as Kurt Vonnegut and Donald Barthelme, Studs Terkel and Lou Reed, Algren died on May 9, 1981, within days of his appointment as a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

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