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The Nightingales of Troy

Alice Fulton (Author, Cornell University)

 

“Outstanding....Alice Fulton reveals herself to be triumphantly at home in the short story.”—Boston Sunday Globe

In 1908, Mamie Garrahan faces childbirth aided by her arsenic-eating sister-in-law Kitty, a nun who grows opium poppies, and a doctor who prescribes Bayer Heroin. "In the twentieth century, I believe there are no saints left," Mamie remarks. But her daughters and granddaughter test this notion with far-reaching consequences. Kitty's arsenic reappears sixty years later in the hands of her distraught niece. A schoolgirl's passion for the Beatles and Melville—a passion both lonely and funny—shapes her life. Each decade is illuminated by endearingly eccentric characters: an anorexic waitress falls for a wealthy college boy in the jazz age...an exuberant young nurse questions science during the Depression...a homely seamstress designs a scandalous dress in the 1950s. The Nightingales of Troy, the first fiction collection by an acclaimed American poet, creates a vividly palpable sense of time and place. Alice Fulton's memorable characters confront the deepest dilemmas with bravery and abiding love.

Book Details

  • Paperback
  • July 2009
  • ISBN 978-0-393-33544-6
  • 5.5 × 8.3 in / 256 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide including Canada, but excluding the British Commonwealth.

Endorsements & Reviews

“From a farm birth in 1908 to an MRI in 1999—Fulton’s stories are sublime distillations, not only of the individual lives they so eloquently describe, but also of the eras throughout which the formidable Garrahan family endures.” — Boston Globe

“Boy, oh boy, was it worth waiting for! Four generations...are placed before us...blessed and cursed, saints and lost souls....Enough death and disease to make Angela’s Ashes look like a comic valentine.” — Los Angeles Times

“A beautiful collection of tales recounting imagined lives and realistic depictions of the 20th century wrapped in perfectly detailed decades....Fulton makes the universal human struggles - the tribulations of birth, death, aging, loneliness, betrayal, altruism and love—and achievements of her characters accessible to a wide audience. Fulton's short stories possess soul with unmistakable sincerity and emotion built from more than fiction alone.” — Kathryn Andryshak, Ithaca Times

“Starred Review. Every element in this collection of scintillating linked short stories is surprising, pleasurable, and stealthily affecting.” — Donna Seaman, Booklist

Also by Alice Fulton All

  1. Book CoverBarely Composed: Poems

    Paperback

  2. Book CoverCascade Experiment: Selected Poems

    Paperback

  3. Book CoverFelt: Poems

    Paperback

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