First published nearly a quarter-century ago and one of the very few short-story collections to win the PEN/Faulkner Award, this is American fiction at its most vital each narrative a masterpiece of sustained power and seemingly effortless literary grace. Two New York attorneys newly flush with wealth embark on a dissolute tour of Italy; an ambitious young screenwriter unexpectedly discovers the true meaning of art and glory; a rider, far off in the fields, is involved in an horrific accident night is falling, and she must face her destiny alone. These stories confirm James Salter as one of the finest writers of our time.
About the Author
James Salter was the celebrated author of six novels ("The Hunters", 1957; "The Arm of Flesh", 1961; "A Sport and a Pastime", 1967; "Light Years", 1975; "Solo Faces", 1979; and "All That Is", 2013) and three books of stories ("Dusk and Other Stories", 1988; "Last Night", 2005; and "Collected Stories", 2013), as well a memoir, "Burning the Days" (1997). He also had a successful Hollywood career, most notably as the screenwriter of "Downhill Racer" (1969). Born in New Jersey in 1926 and raised in New York City, he attended West Point during World War II and served as an officer and a fighter pilot in the U.S. Air Force from 1945 to 1957. He drew on his combat experiences in Korea for his first two novels, though it was not until the controversial but now-classic A Sport and a Pastime that he considered that he had come close to measuring up to his own standards. He was a recipient of the 1989 PEN/Faulkner Award and the 2012 PEN/Malamud Award. He died in Sag Harbor, New York, in 2015.
Philip Gourevitch is the editor of "The Paris Review, " a staff writer for "The New Yorker, " and the author of "A Cold Case" and "We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed with Our Families: Stories from Rwanda, " winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award.
“[James Salter] can suggest in a single sentence, an individual’s entire history, the complex interplay of longing and fear, hope and need, that has brought about the present. In doing so, these stories glimmer with the magic of fiction; they pull us, hungrily, into the mundane drama of their characters’ lives.”—New York Times
“Salter’s prose is rare and stunning.”—John Irving
“Salter inhabits the same rarified heights as Flannery O’Connor, Paul Bowles, Tennessee Williams, and John Cheever.”—Washington Post Book World
“There is scarcely a writer alive who could not learn from his passion and precision of language.”—Peter Mathiessen
“Admirers of James Salter’s fiction speak of it reverently, with delicacy, almost in awe, expressions of enthusiasm befitting the work.”—Elizabeth Benedict