Books by Paxton Davis

A BOY NO MORE by Paxton Davis
Released: Aug. 15, 1992

Third and final installment in a series (A Boy's War, 1990; Being a Boy, 1988) about Davis's youth. The first chapter here tells of Davis's return to Winston- Salem from Army duty in India during WW II, and for older readers this may well be the book's richest experience, with memories of homecoming that can be shared by all veterans and their families. After a summer off, during which he discovers himself short- tempered and stressed out by the changeover to civilian life, Davis settles down to medical studies and a boring lab job. He tells of his gradual awakening to the plight of blacks in the South, of his loss of interest in medicine and growing obsession with language and literature. Eventually, Davis switches to an English major, covers school sports for a local paper, writes a novel in imitation of Sinclair Lewis, does undergraduate work at Johns Hopkins. Later, he winds up as an apprentice reporter on the Winston-Salem Journal & Sentinel and has his first big story when exposing an incompetent alcoholic surgeon at the local hospital. The memoir ends with the death of Davis's father. All along the way, the author tells his story by drawing loving portraits of dozens of fellow students, teachers, fellow reporters, and editors—which, while emerging from the page with great skill and immediacy, offer a core experience perhaps insufficiently strong to attract most readers. An autobiography that is exactly what it means to be—and no more. (B&w photos.) Read full book review >