Dennison (Luisa Domic, 1985, etc.) died in 1987, and this genial hodgepodge draws from his journals and his scattered notes on and interviews with people in Temple, Me., the rural community to which he migrated from New York City. Apparently, Dennison intended to organize these into some sort of communal portrait, and the raw material for a powerful book certainly exists. His writing and observations are sharp, and it is interesting to see the source for the rural New England settings in his novel Luisa Domic and the novella ``Shawno'' (to be reissued in one volume by Steerforth in June), but the lack of narrative drive drags the book down, particularly the sections culled from Dennison's journals. These contain mostly observations of nature, occasionally mixed with stories about his children and wife and, in a few places, his frustration with rural life. These passages, while lyrical, are much less involving than the interviews. These are the authentic voices of New England, men who sound detached even when discussing chain-saw accidents: ``He was workin' by himself one Saturday up the side of Spruce Mountain, 'bout four miles from the tarred road, and he slipped, or God knows what, 'n he cut his whole foot and ankle right off, right clean through the bone, the whole goddam way.'' They are also brutally honest: Of a local resident who had hung himself recently, one man burns, ``If I'd known he was goin' to do it I'd've helped him.... The man was a crook. He cheated me and he cheated everybody.'' To his credit, Dennison himself never paints too rosy a picture of rural life either—the slaughtering of a sheep is described explicitly. A potluck with some good bits, but it is clear that the author would have made something greater than simply the sum of its parts.

Pub Date: June 15, 1994

ISBN: 1-883642-22-1

Page Count: 195

Publisher: Steerforth

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1994

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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