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Shame and Wonder: Essays

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by David Searcy
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Shame and Wonder: Essays by David Searcy

For fans of John Jeremiah Sullivan, Leslie Jamison, Geoff Dyer, and W. G. Sebald, the twenty-one essays in David Searcy??s debut collection are captivating, daring??"and completely unlike anything else you??ve read before. Forging connections between the sublime and the mundane, this is a work of true grace, wisdom, and joy.

Expansive in scope but deeply personal in perspective, the pieces in Shame and Wonder are born of a vast, abiding curiosity, one that has led David Searcy into some strange and beautiful territory, where old Uncle Scrooge comic books reveal profound truths, and the vastness of space becomes an expression of pure love. Whether ruminating on an old El Camino pickup truck, those magical prizes lurking in the cereal boxes of our youth, or a lurid online ad for “Sexy Girls Near Dallas,” Searcy brings his unique blend of affection and suspicion to the everyday wonders that surround and seduce us. In “Nameless,” he ruminates on spirituality and the fate of an unknown tightrope walker who falls to his death in Texas in the 1880s, buried as a local legend but without a given name. “The Hudson River School” weaves together Google Maps, classical art, and dental hygiene into a story that explores??"with exquisite humor and grace??"the seemingly impossible angles at which our lives often intersect. And in “An Enchanted Tree Near Fredericksburg,” countless lovers carve countless hearts into the gnarled trunk of an ancient oak tree, leaving their marks to be healed, lifted upward, and, finally, absorbed.

Haunting, hilarious, and full of longing, Shame and Wonder announces the arrival of David Searcy as an essential and surprising new voice in American writing.

Advance praise for Shame and Wonder

Shame and Wonder is a work of genius??"a particular kind of genius, to be sure, one that bides more comfortably with questions, potentialities, mysteries, and wonders than with the hard-and-fast answers that the information age has taught us to crave. If you want to know things, real things, read Shame and Wonder. It will knock you flat and lift you up.”??"Ben Fountain, author of Billy Lynn??s Long Halftime Walk

“Reading David Searcy isn??t like reading anyone else. His voice is weird and it??s smart and it??s right here, oddly close, paying attention to cereal prizes and possums, to the loneliness of new bedrooms and the slow fade of hearts etched into bark. Searcy probes moments that pulse with secret electricity.”??"Leslie Jamison, author of The Empathy Exams

“Searcy reminds us what voice means and why it??s useful. We can hear something here, something achieved and distinctive. A writer has figured out how to bring the style of his prose into near-perfect alignment with his habit of mind, and to trust the impulses of his curiosity in such a way that we seem to experience not effort but flowing thought.”??"John Jeremiah Sullivan, author of Pulphead

“Strange, wonderful, and full of curiosity and nostalgia, David Searcy??s essays chip away at the world around us to lay bare the beauty and sadness at the heart of it all.”??"Gay Talese

“The essays in this debut collection . . . suggest what might happen if Stephen King somehow morphed into David Foster Wallace. . . . Meaning and mystery coexist in Searcy??s mind, and his offbeat, exciting writing will resonate.”??"Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“Offbeat, beguiling . . . Searcy??s writing is by sharp turns goofy, wry, and melancholy, [and] always curious and superbly evocative.”??"Publishers Weekly (starred review)

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Ebook Details
Pages: 240
Size: 13.6 MB
Publisher: Random House
Date published:   2016
ISBN: 9780812993950 (DRM-EPUB)

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This product is listed in the following categories:

Nonfiction > Biography & Autobiography > Personal Memoirs
Nonfiction > Literary Collections > Essays
Nonfiction > Social Science > Essays

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