You don't have to pay much attention to this blog to know I'm a huge Ron Rash fan. His new collection Burning Bright arrived in the mail yesterday. I'm saving it until tonight when I can devote full attention to it. In the interim, here's a review from, of all places, the Harvard Crimson.
Ron Rash was born in Chester, South Carolina and grew up in Boiling Springs, North Carolina, and his writing reflects his roots. In “Burning Bright,” Rash pays homage to the land and the people of the Appalachian Mountains in which he was raised.
“Burning Bright” is a collection of short stories which spans roughly 150 years from the closing days of the Civil War to modern times. Although the book tells a variety of stories and hosts a range of narrators, Rash’s stories remain naturally cohesive. The books span a great number of years, but the work remains unified by a strong, organic internal force. Appalachia is one of the most poverty-stricken areas in the United States, and Rash’s work reflects the tenuous relationship that the people of this region have with each other and the land beneath them. The importance of the earth and the communities drives each story together and remains unabated throughout the work. More.
I've been looking forward to this one for quite some time, after the action-packed–how often can you say that about a literary novel?–and fascinating Serena and my favorite of his, The World Made Straight. I'll say more after I've gotten into it tonight or tomorrow.