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“...a kind of parasitic hinterland...”

Peter Orner, from Love and Shame and Love:

A high place where the prairie convulses into ravines and the scalloped bluffs rise above the lake. It is part of what is known collectively as Chicagoland, a mythical place, a kind of parasitic hinterland that exists solely in the mind of those who dream of the city from a distance. Just half an hour away, depending on traffic. How do you begin to remember a place you've never left? It's not yet full winter, and memory is always November. The trees are stripped bare. Now you can see all the setback houses you hadn't been able to see in summer.

Orner is a Chicago native whose various writings I've always enjoyed - although to date the only book of his that I’ve read is his collection The Esther Stories, which included the lovely novella Fall River Marriage, a personal favorite of mine. Although he's best known for his shorter work, Love and Shame and Love is the longest thing he's published, and the book has me intrigued, along with the reading memoir Am I Alone Here?: Notes on Living to Read and Reading to Live.

July 9, 2018 | Permalink


Orner just so happens to have a new story in The New Yorker, “My Dead”:

Posted by: Pete at Jul 12, 2018 2:03:37 PM