The One Inside

The One Inside

Book - 2017
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Shepard's novel "opens with a man in his house at dawn, surrounded by aspens, coyotes cackling in the distance as he quietly navigates the distance between present and past. More and more, memory is overtaking him: in his mind he sees himself in a movie-set trailer, his young face staring back at him in a mirror surrounded by light bulbs. In his dreams and in visions he sees his late father--sometimes in miniature, sometimes flying planes, sometimes at war. By turns, he sees the bygone America of his childhood: the farmland and the feedlots, the rail yards and the diners--and, most hauntingly, his father's young girlfriend, with whom he also became involved, setting into motion a tragedy that has stayed with him"--
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2017
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780451494580
Branch Call Number: FIC SHEPARD 2017
Characteristics: xii, 172 pages ; 22 cm


From Library Staff

A brooding writer, a dead father, sex, death and mayhem as coyotes howl in the background: this elegiac novel is pure Shepard.

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Mar 15, 2020

Strangely incensed that rocker Patti Smith not his partner of 30 yrs Jessica Lange or one of his kids was asked to write the forward of his final work before dying of ALS complications at 73. Feels like a betrayal somehow. There is every sense of a final reckoning in this collection yet no big revelations here - familiar desert images, walking on railroad tracks, stepping on bull thorns and broken glass, sadness, regret without knowing what exactly, unexplained grief, a father picking at old shrapnel scars on the back of his neck. Always a credible actor, the writing gave Shepard an unexpected dimension or heft that suggested someone who would be interesting to talk to, someone who would be nice to know, someone who would get the joke. Women were crazy about him. Shepard was Joni Mitchell's Coyote. Lange tried to keep him away from temptation as much as she could, living as they did away from LA, but the movie industry being what it is must have put him in harm's way more than once, and God never made a writer who would resist temptation.


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