South and West: From a Notebook

By | October 7, 2017
South and West: From a Notebook Author Joan Didion
ISBN-10 1524732796
ISBN-13 9781524732790
Year 2017-03-07
Pages 160
Language English
Publisher Knopf
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From the best selling author of the National Book Award winning The Year of Magical Thinking two extended excerpts from her never before seen notebooks writings that offer an illuminating glimpse into the mind and process of a legendary writer Joan Didion has always kept notebooks of overheard dialogue observations interviews drafts of essays and articles and here is one such draft that traces a road trip she took with her husband John Gregory Dunne in June 1970 through Louisiana Mississippi and Alabama She interviews prominent local figures describes motels diners a deserted reptile farm a visit with Walker Percy a ladies brunch at the Mississippi Broadcasters Convention She writes about the stifling heat the almost viscous pace of life the sulfurous light and the preoccupation with race class and heritage she finds in the small towns they pass through And from a different notebook the California Notes that began as an assignment from Rolling Stone on the Patty Hearst trial of 1976 Though Didion never wrote the piece watching the trial and being in San Francisco triggered thoughts about the city its social hierarchy the Hearsts and her own upbringing in Sacramento Here too is the beginning of her thinking about the West its landscape the western women who were heroic for her and her own lineage all of which would appear later in her acclaimed 2003 book Where I Was From One of TIMEs most anticipated books of 2017 One of The New York Times Book Review sWhat Youll Be Reading in 2017Incldued among the Best Books of March 2017 by both LitHub and Signature

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