Midstream : An Unfinished Memoir

Midstream : An Unfinished Memoir

Book - 2012
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Baker & Taylor
When Reynolds Price died in January 2011, he left behind one final work--200 candid, heartrending manuscript pages about a critical period in his young adulthood. Picking up where his previous memoir, Ardent Spirits, left off, the work documents a brief time from 1961 to 1965, perhaps the most leisurely of Price's life, but also one of enormous challenge and growth. Approaching thirty, Price writes, is to face the notion that "This is it. I'm now the person I'm likely to be ... from here to the end." Midstream, which begins when Price is twenty-eight, details the final youthful adventures of a man on the cusp of artistic acclaim. He chases a love to England, only to meet heartbreak. After other travels, he returns to the United States, where his first novel finds success. Concluding with his mother's death and Price's new endeavors--a second novel and a foray into Hollywood screenwriting--Midstream offers a poignant portrait of a man at the threshold of true adulthood, navigating new responsibilities andpleasures alike.--From publisher description.

Baker
& Taylor

The late Rhodes Scholar and National Book Critics Circle Award-winning author of Kate Vaiden chronicles his life between 1961 and 1965, during which he turned 30, published his first book, lost his mother and pursued an adult relationship. 20,000 first printing.
Chronicles the author's life between 1961 and 1965, during which he turned thirty, published his first book, lost his mother, and pursued an adult relationship.

Simon and Schuster
The fourth and final memoir from Reynolds Price, “one of the most important voices in modern southern fiction” (The New York Times), who died in January 2011.

The final book from Reynolds Price, “one of the most important voices in modern Southern fiction” (The New York Times)—with a foreword by Anne Tyler and an afterwordby William Price

WHEN REYNOLDS PRICE DIED IN JANUARY 2011, he left behind one final piece of writing—two hundred candid, heartrending, and marvelously written manuscript pages about a critical period in his young adulthood. Picking up where his previous memoir, Ardent Spirits, left off, the work documents a brief time from 1961 to 1965, perhaps the most leisurely of Price’s life, but also one of enormous challenge and growth. Price gave it the title Midstream. Approaching thirty, Price writes, is to face the notion that “This is it. I’m now the person I’m likely to be . . . from here to the end.Midstream, which begins when Price is twenty-eight, details the final youthful adventures of a man on the cusp of artistic acclaim. Here, Price chases a love to England, only to meet heartbreak. Determined to pursue other pleasures, he travels to Sweden for a friend’s wedding, then journeys to Rome with British poet Stephen Spender and spends an afternoon with Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor. Price returns to the United States, where he finds company with a group of artists as he awaits the 1962 publication of his first novel, A Long and Happy Life.

“Few writers have made as dramatic an entrance on the American literary stage,” declared The New York Times on the book’s success. Price would settle into a tranquil life in North Carolina, buy a house, and resume teaching. Concluding with his mother’s death and Price’s new endeavors—a second novel and foray into Hollywood screenwriting—Midstream offers a poignant portrait of a man at the threshold of true adulthood, navigating new responsibilities and pleasures alike. It is a fitting bookend for Price’s remarkable career, and it reinforces his place in the pantheon of American literature.

***

 

FROM ANNE TYLER’S FOREWORD TO MIDSTREAM

“Just look at him flying across the campus, curls bouncing, dark eyes flashing, and a black cape (I swear it) flaring out behind him. Actually he never owned a black cape; he told me that, years later. He said it was a navy jacket, just tossed over his shoulders. But still, he was wearing a virtual cape, if you know what I mean. He was an exclamation point in a landscape of mostly declarative sentences. He lived in a house-trailer out in the woods; he invited us to come there and drink smoky-tasting tea in handmade mugs. Speaking with a trace of an English accent from his recent studies at Oxford (for he had a genius for unintentional mimicry, which he said could become a curse in certain situations), he told us funny, affectionate tales about his childhood in backwater Macon. Most of us came from Macons of our own; we were astonished to hear that they were fit subjects for storytelling. All over again, inspiration hit. Let us out of there! We had to get back to our rooms and start writing.”

Publisher: New York : Scribner, 2012
Edition: First Scribner hardcover edition
ISBN: 9781439183496
143918349X
Branch Call Number: 813x PRICE PRICE
Additional Contributors: Tyler, Anne

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