Flannery: A Life Of Flannery O'connor

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Flannery: A Life Of Flannery O'connor

by Brad Gooch

Little, Brown And Company | February 25, 2009 | Hardcover

Flannery: A Life Of Flannery O'connor is rated 5 out of 5 by 1.
The landscape of American literature was fundamentally changed when Flannery O''Connor stepped onto the scene with her first published book, Wise Blood, in 1952. Her fierce, sometimes comic novels and stories reflected the darkly funny, vibrant, and theologically sophisticated woman who wrote them. Brad Gooch brings to life O''Connor''s significant friendships--with Robert Lowell, Elizabeth Hardwick, Walker Percy, and James Dickey among others--and her deeply felt convictions, as expressed in her communications with Thomas Merton, Elizabeth Bishop, and Betty Hester. Hester was famously known as "A" in O''Connor''s collected letters, The Habit of Being, and a large cache of correspondence to her from O''Connor was made available to scholars, including Brad Gooch, in 2006. O''Connor''s capacity to live fully--despite the chronic disease that eventually confined her to her mother''s farm in Georgia--is illuminated in this engaging and authoritative biography.

PRAISE FOR FLANNERY

"Flannery O''Connor, one of the best American writers of short fiction, has found her ideal biographer in Brad Gooch. With elegance and fairness, Gooch deals with the sensitive areas of race and religion in O''Connor''s life. He also takes us back to those heady days after the war when O''Connor studied creative writing at Iowa. There is much that is new in this book, but, more important, everything is presented in a strong, clear light." --Edmund White

"This splendid biography gives us no saint or martyr but the story of a gifted and complicated woman, bent on making the best of the difficult hand fate has dealt her, whether it is with grit and humor or with an abiding desire to make palpable to readers the terrible mystery of God''s grace." --Frances Kiernan, author of Seeing Mary Plain: A Life of Mary McCarthy

"A good biographer is hard to find. Brad Gooch is not merely good-he is extraordinary. Blessed with the eye and ear of a novelist, he has composed the life that admirers of the fierce and hilarious Georgia genius have long been hoping for." -- Joel Conarroe, President Emeritus, John Simon Guggenheim Foundation

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 464 pages, 9.5 × 6.32 × 1.42 in

Published: February 25, 2009

Publisher: Little, Brown And Company

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0316000663

ISBN - 13: 9780316000666

Found in: Biography and Memoir

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Biography of Flannery O'Connor Before I begin, I must tell you, I have never read anything by Flannery O' Connor. I may have glanced at a story of hers in high school but that was so long ago. This might have hampered my enjoyment of Gooch's novel if it had been less interesting and badly written but, thankfully, Flannery was an interesting read in itself. I was a bit worried when I started reading because of my lack of knowledge about Flannery O'Connor. I was surprised when I immediately became engrossed in Flannery's life. I became attached to her and I wanted to know more about her. She was quite the quirky character. I often found myself laughing out loud at something she said or did. She was quite the character and I really enjoyed getting to know her. Flannery was an extremely well-written book. It was one of the few biographies that I have read that managed to be informative but not overbearing. I thought it was a really balanced portrayal of Flannery O'Connor. The pictures also enhanced the material in the book. They provided an excellent visual reference point. Sometime I find that pictures are chosen for aesthetics rather than to serve a purpose but that definitely was not the case with this biography. When I wanted to get a mental image of a place that O'Connor frequented, I looked in the picture insert. I did at points become confused as to who was who because of the constant parade of people through O'Connor's life but after a while the names became familiar and easy to remember when they were referenced again. For someone who has never read a word of Flannery O'Connor (that she can remember), I really became attached to her. I want to read her works now. And I think I will. Someday.
Date published: 2009-04-20

– More About This Product –

Flannery: A Life Of Flannery O'connor

by Brad Gooch

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 464 pages, 9.5 × 6.32 × 1.42 in

Published: February 25, 2009

Publisher: Little, Brown And Company

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0316000663

ISBN - 13: 9780316000666

About the Book

In this engaging and authoritative biography, Gooch brings to life Flannery O'Connor's significant friendships and her deeply felt convictions, as expressed in her communications with Thomas Merton, Elizabeth Bishop, and Betty Hester.

From the Publisher

The landscape of American literature was fundamentally changed when Flannery O''Connor stepped onto the scene with her first published book, Wise Blood, in 1952. Her fierce, sometimes comic novels and stories reflected the darkly funny, vibrant, and theologically sophisticated woman who wrote them. Brad Gooch brings to life O''Connor''s significant friendships--with Robert Lowell, Elizabeth Hardwick, Walker Percy, and James Dickey among others--and her deeply felt convictions, as expressed in her communications with Thomas Merton, Elizabeth Bishop, and Betty Hester. Hester was famously known as "A" in O''Connor''s collected letters, The Habit of Being, and a large cache of correspondence to her from O''Connor was made available to scholars, including Brad Gooch, in 2006. O''Connor''s capacity to live fully--despite the chronic disease that eventually confined her to her mother''s farm in Georgia--is illuminated in this engaging and authoritative biography.

PRAISE FOR FLANNERY

"Flannery O''Connor, one of the best American writers of short fiction, has found her ideal biographer in Brad Gooch. With elegance and fairness, Gooch deals with the sensitive areas of race and religion in O''Connor''s life. He also takes us back to those heady days after the war when O''Connor studied creative writing at Iowa. There is much that is new in this book, but, more important, everything is presented in a strong, clear light." --Edmund White

"This splendid biography gives us no saint or martyr but the story of a gifted and complicated woman, bent on making the best of the difficult hand fate has dealt her, whether it is with grit and humor or with an abiding desire to make palpable to readers the terrible mystery of God''s grace." --Frances Kiernan, author of Seeing Mary Plain: A Life of Mary McCarthy

"A good biographer is hard to find. Brad Gooch is not merely good-he is extraordinary. Blessed with the eye and ear of a novelist, he has composed the life that admirers of the fierce and hilarious Georgia genius have long been hoping for." -- Joel Conarroe, President Emeritus, John Simon Guggenheim Foundation

About the Author

Brad Gooch is the author of the acclaimed biography of Frank O''Hara, City Poet, as well as other nonfiction and three novels. The recipient of National Endowment for the Humanities and Guggenheim fellowships, he earned his Ph.D. at <_st13a_placename _w3a_st="on">Columbia <_st13a_placetype _w3a_st="on">University and is Professor of English at <_st13a_placename _w3a_st="on">William <_st13a_placename _w3a_st="on">Paterson <_st13a_placetype _w3a_st="on">University in <_st13a_state _w3a_st="on"><_st13a_place _w3a_st="on">New Jersey.

Editorial Reviews

"In his engaging, sympathetic, and yet intellectually scrupulous biography of O''Connor, Brad Gooch provides the ideal biographical commentary: his voice is never obtrusive, yet we feel his judgment throughout; his allegiance to his subject is never in doubt, yet we sense his critical detachment, especially in his tracing of the ways in which "Flannery"--as Gooch calls O''Connor--seems to have mapped out a strategy of survival for herself."-Joyce Carol Oates, New York Review of Books
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