Ruth Suckow University of Iowa Press, 1992 Library of Congress PS3537.U34F6 1992 | Dewey Decimal 813.52
Here is an introspective, poignant portrait of an American family during a time of sweeping changes. Now nearly sixty years after it first appeared, Suckow's finest work still displays a thorough realism in its characters' actions and aspirations; the uneasy compromises they are forced to make still ring true.
Suckow's talent for retrospective analysis comes to life as she examines her own people—Iowans, descendants of early settlers—through the lives of the Ferguson family, living in the fictional small town of Belmond, Iowa. Using her gift of creating three-dimensional, living characters, Suckow focuses on personal differences within the family and each member's separate struggle to make sense of past and present, to confront a pervasive sense of loss as a way of life disappears.
A Literary History of Iowa
Clarence A. Andrews University of Iowa Press, 1972 Library of Congress PS283.I8A8 | Dewey Decimal 810.99777
Originally published in 1972, A Literary History of Iowa, which features writers published in book form between 1856 and the late 1960s, returns to print. One of Iowa's native sons, Ellis Parker Butler, once said that in Iowa 12 dollars were spent for fertilizer each time a dollar was spent for literature. Many readers will be surprised to learn from this book the extent of Iowa's distinguished literary past---the many prizes and praise received by her authors. To those already familiar with Iowa's credits, A Literary History of Iowa will be a nostalgic and informative delight. During the 1920s and 1930s, Iowa had good claim to recognition as the literary capital of the country. Clarence Andrews says that as he grew up he knew a host of Iowa writers. "I also knew that Iowa was winning a diproportionate share of the Pulitzer Prizes---Hamlin Garland, Margaret Wilson, Susan Glaspell, Frank Luther Mott, "Ding" Darling, Clark Mollenhoff. It was winning its share or more of prizes offered by publishers---and its authors' books were being selected as Book-of-the-Month and Literary Guild books. I knew too about Carl Van Vechten as part of that avant-garde group of midwest exiles---including Fitzgerald, Anderson, and Hemingway."A Literary History of Iowa looks at Iowans who knew and cared for the state---people who wrote poetry, plays, musical plays, novels, and short stories about Iowa subjects, Iowa ideas, Iowa people. These writers often have dealt with such themes as the state's history, the rise of technology and its impact on the community, provincialism and exploitation, the problems of personal adjustment, and the family and the community. John T. Frederick, whose own books are paramount in Iowa's literary history, has pointed to Iowa's special contributions to the literature of rural life in saying that no other state can show its portrayal in "fiction so rich, so varied, and so generally sound as can Iowa."
A Ruth Suckow Omnibus
Ruth Suckow University of Iowa Press, 1988 Library of Congress PS3537.U34A6 1988 | Dewey Decimal 813.52
This collection of ten short stories and one novella reintroduces a superb regional writer whose fiction, though firmly planted in the soil of the Midwest, stretches in significance to include all human drama.
Despite her wide experience, Ruth Suckow became and remained a writer interested in small-town and small-city life. All her fiction contains deep and penetrating insights into the motivations of characters who are upheld by their dreams, memories of small-town childhoods, and the need to make sense of the contrast between past and present, idealism and practicality, conformity and individualism. These expressive, resonant stories will be welcomed by all new readers and by Ruth Suckow fans everywhere.