KICK THE DOG GENTLY by Ozro F. Grant

KICK THE DOG GENTLY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A childhood novel that seems to be semi-autobiographical...The narrator is Omar Khayyam Garrett who tells us about his family and a hotel they bought in a one-horse Oklahoma town in 1914. The story is episodic and reveals a series of two-dimensional types associated with the hotel and one-dimensional Indians. Omar's minor adventures usually include his older brother Hanford (""who was crashing heedlessly toward thirteen"") and his slightly older sister Della. Mother is a grim creature something like the farm wife in Grant Wood's painting American Gothic, while father is a happy-go-lucky business failure and worse farmer. Staying at the hotel on occasion are a melancholy, alcoholic poet whose ex-girlfriend is secretly trailing him about; a hard-drinking Shakespearean actor, and even a blind Indian. A visit to an Indian powwow provides the book's liveliest scene. A passing stab at pathos here and there evokes only mild response. Grant obviously enjoys these memories, but they have a modesty and lack of egoism which makes them bland on the page.

Pub Date: Oct. 8th, 1965
Publisher: Bobbs-Merrill