By Wallace Stegner
Joe Allston, the retired literary agent of Stegner's nationwide e-book Award-winning novel, The Spectator Bird, returns during this disquieting and keenly saw novel. Scarred through the mindless loss of life in their son and baffled via the engulfing chaos of the Nineteen Sixties, Allston and his spouse, Ruth, have left the coast for a California retreat. And even supposing their new domestic seems like Eden, it additionally has serpents: Jim Peck, a messianic exponent of substances, yoga, and intercourse; and Marian Catlin, an enticing younger lady whose otherworldly innocence is much extra appealing—and way more risky.
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Extra info for All the Little Live Things
Shoulders hunched, hands deep in his pockets, he was watching a book of carpet samples methodically turning its pages. She caught him up and they walked on in silence till they came to a fork at the end of the street and stopped. Colin spoke in commiseration. ’ Where the street divided there stood what must have once been an imposing residence, a palace. A row of stone lions stared down from beneath the rusting balcony on the first floor. The high-arched windows, flanked by finely grooved, pitted pillars, were blocked with corrugated tin which had been fly-posted, even on the second floor.
In less than twenty minutes they had emptied the bottle. Robert told them that he had business interests, that he had grown up in London, that his wife was Canadian. When Mary asked how he met his wife, Robert said it was impossible to explain that without first describing his sisters and his mother, and these in turn could be explained only in terms of his father. It was clear he was preparing the way to telling them his story. ‘Ha ha ha’ was winding up to another crescendo, and at a table near the juke-box a man with curly hair sank his face in his hands.
Colin stood up and watched the passers-by in the street below. Tourists, many of them elderly, in their best summer suits and dresses, moved along the pavement in reptilian slow motion. Now and then a couple stopped to stare approvingly at the customers on the pontoon drinking against their gigantic backcloth of sunset and reddened water. One elderly gentleman positioned his wife in the foreground and half-knelt with thin, trembling thighs, to take a picture. The drinkers at a table immediately behind the woman raised their glasses good-naturedly towards the camera.
All the Little Live Things by Wallace Stegner