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The Choiring Of The Trees

Arkansas, 1914: A 13-year-old girl is raped in the backwoods of the Ozarks.  On her testimony, a young mountaineer is convicted and sentenced to the electric chair.
Nail Chism, strangest and most solitary of the Chism clan that populates of all Donald Harington's acclaimed novels about Stay More, Arkansas, appears doomed to execution -until his innocence is championed by the staff artist of the state's leading newspaper, a woman whose past is even stranger and more solitary than Nail's.  This woman, Viridis Monday, could have become a painter in Paris during the era of Cubism and the Fauves but, instead, she returned home to Little Rock.  By chance she has been given the job of sketching condemned men in their last moments, awaiting electrocution.  Will she succeed in saving Nail?  Or will the singing -"choiring"- of the trees that Nail hear while strapped into the chair be the last earthly (or unearthly) sound he will ever hear?

 

 


The Cockroaches of Stay More

The Cockroaches of Stay More

With this wonderfully irreverent comic novel, Harington leaves off chronicling the human inhabitants of the Arkansas Ozark town of Stay More and turns his attention to its insect world. In depicting the cockroach community, who perambulate on gitalongs, apprehend their environment through sniff whips and commit unwitting malapropisms about the mysterious world of Man (and Woman), Harington unleashes a sprightly, antic imagination.

 

 

 

 


Thirteen Albatrosses

13 Albatrosses (or, Falling off the Mountain)

Welcome to the strange, quixotic quest of Vernon Ingledew: to win the governorship of Arkansas.  Ingledew, a self-taught genius is soon hampered by what his opponents refer to his "Thirteen Albatrosses."  Among them: he is an atheist; lives in sin with his first cousin; and believe in "extirpating" -that is, getting rid of- hospitals, prisons, tobacco, and handguns.  Nevertheless, Ingledew attracts to his campaign some of America's heaviest political hitter.  Together they from Ingledew's Seven Samurai, aides whose devotion will be tested by kidnappings, adulterous love affairs, and defection to the rival campaign of the vulgar, hated Arkansas Governor Shoat Bradfield.

 

 


Let Us Build Us A City

Let Us Build Us A City: Eleven Lost Towns

"Let us build us a city," says the Book of Genesis, "and a tower whose top may reach unto heaven."  The city builders of America were more ambitious still, putting "City" into the names of more than a thousand towns.  In Arkansas alone thirty-six of them were laid out, from Mound City on the Mississippi to Cherokee City near the Oklahoma line.  Donald Harington visited what remains of eleven Arkansas "cities" founded in more prosperous days, and he has written a book about them that is like no other in American literature.
In the long years of decline many of these towns dwindled to a church, a post office, a general store, a gas station, and a few rundown houses.  But every rundown house has a rundown porch, every porch a rocking chair, and every rocker and old man or woman with a story 0sometimes many stories.  The author tracked a researcher named Kim who was listening to and recording the stories, and with her help put together a unique and enchanting book about towns that will never again be their old selves and towns that never were anything to begin with, despite the brave dreams of their founders.  At the end of the adventure the author and Kim fell in love.


Some Other Place.  The Right Place.

Some other Place. The Right Place

Diana Stoving, freshly graduated from Sarah Lawrence, never suspects that thumbing through a local New Jersey newspaper will launch her on a year-long journey filled with strange adventure.  Nether does ingenuous Day Whittacker, Eagle Scout.  But Diana and Day and the reincarnated presence of Diana's deceased grandfather -Daniel Lyam Montross- are fatefully drawn together to explore Montross's life and investigate the violent death he suffered twenty years before.
Rich in its sense of time and timelessness, lyrical and erotic in it's tone, Some Other Place.  The Right Place. follows Diana and Day in their turns as amateur archaeologists, naturalists, sleuth, and, inevitably, lovers, as the solution of Montross's end reveals the mystery of their own beginnings.

 

 


Lightning Bug

Lightning Bug

Latha Bourne, the attractive postmistress of Stay More -a small town in the Arkansas Ozarks- didn't expect to see Every Dill again.
More than ten years before, Latha had rejected many young men, including Every, because she loved only Raymond Ingledew.  When Ray was posted missing during World War I, Latha continued to be true until Every, growing frantic, raped her, robbed the bank, and vanished leaving her pregnant.
Now everyone in the village is surprised that Every had the nerve to reappear, and Latha, anxious to savor Every anew, is surprised by his insistence that, as a revivalist preacher, he must first marry her.  Donald Harington's candid narrative weaves into an erotic yet wonderfully innocent tale of loss and of finding.

 

 


The Cherry Pit

The Cherry Pit

Clifford Stone -quixotic curator of arcane Americana at a Boston antiques foundation and cataloguer of our "Vanished American Past"- forsakes Boston, his icy wife, and even his most constant companion, his Ring-Master notebook, to return to his hometown of Little Rock, Arkansas, and a life that is both instantly familiar and disturbingly strange.
Cliff's journey back to Little Rock begins as a recovery mission.  In quick turns, though, it becomes a desperate search for
, confrontation with, immersion in, and emergence from his lost past.  In a series of libidinous, murderous, hilarious, and anxious adventures, Cliff renews old friendships -including one with a special girl he thought he had forgotten- and makes some new enemies.

The Cherry Pit is a flamboyant, lascivious, comic novel about restoration and renewal -and, like all proper comic novels, a serious book.

 

 

 
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