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White People by Allan Gurganus

December 26, 2012

What a rich and rewarding collection of stories!

These eleven tales by Allan Gurganus present a large array of characters who have in common an original and sincere way of being human and they are all illuminated by Garganus’ gorgeous and lyrical voice: Gurganus knows how to move and involve the reader with relationships between fathers and sons (Minor Heroism) or between growing up brothers (Breathing Room), he will use sardonic humor to make you think about our need to be recognized as artists and about the role played by the arts in our society (America Competes). The main  theme connecting the stories is our quest to become adults, the challenges we have to face – and overcome – to develop into full human beings who are able to accept and understand themselves and the people in their lives. A Hog Loves Its Life – the tale of a nephew and his grandfather, has been my favorite: a story about relationship and communication between different generations, the necessity and the intricacy of building them, it has a beautiful incipit “Language, like love, starts local” and it manages to be thoughtful, sad, funny and moving, what more can you ask of a book?

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