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Farewell, I'm Bound to Leave You Hardcover – September 1, 1996


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 228 pages
  • Publisher: Picador USA; 1st Picador USA ed edition (September 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312146000
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312146009
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.3 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,300,946 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Fred Chappell is a prolific poet and fiction writer praised for his mastery of colloquial dialogue. The Los Angeles Times links him with literary nobility: "Not since James Agee and Robert Penn Warren has a Southern writer displayed such masterful versatility." His latest work takes him back over familiar themes, though with a difference in emphasis. Farewell, I'm Bound to Leave You is a collection of tales about the passage of time, the stories exchanged between generations, and the remarkable characters that inhabit any good yarn about the South and small towns. Something of the unbelievable resides in these tales of believable folks. The well-crafted, lyrical quality of Chappell's writing matches the colorful speech of his characters; you don't so much read the language as hear it.

From Library Journal

Chappell (Brighten the Corner Where You Are, LJ 8/1/89) begins this novel (and although it could appear to be a short story collection, it is a novel, held together by themes, songs, and stories from the past that a young man tries to interpret into the present) with a brilliant death bed set piece, as Cora Kirkman tends her dying mother, the women sharing intertwined reminiscences punctuated by "true" dialog, the mundane courtesy ("Is that enough water?") of the sick room. As full of mountain lore, music, and myth as the Sharon McCrumb Appalachian books, Farewell is also graced with uncommonly fine prose that is lyrical yet restrained. And the stories themselves (all with "Woman" in the title?e.g. "The Feistiest Woman") are superb, ranging from comic pieces and love stories to mystery and ghost stories ("The Shining Woman"), all deeply imbued with the sounds and smells of the hills. Simply stated, Southern fiction at its best; highly recommended.?Robert E. Brown, Onondaga Cty. P.L., Syracuse,
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By mhsmith@erols.com on July 5, 1998
Format: Paperback
Fred Chappell is as Southern as Moon Pies and Dr. Pepper on a thick, August afternoon. In this, his seventh novel, Chappell revisits the Kirkman family, which appeared previously in his critically acclaimed I Am One of You Forever and Brighten the Corner Where You are.
A cataclysmic event approaches. Jess' grandmother, Annie Barbara Sorrells, is near death, and life as the Kirkman family knows it will never be the same. What better time to honor her through remembrances of the people and events that have docorated her years?
The stories parade across the pages in the best Southern tradition weaving a luminous tapestry of the mysteries of life and human nature. Annie Barbara has been the sun around which their lives have revolved, and the prospect of going on without her is haunting. Knowing they can't change the inevitable, they cope with their despair by remembering her life with joy and laughter. Their shared histories give them the strength to try to take up the torch being passed to them.
Chappell intimately knows the rhythm of his characters' thoughts, actions and speech. He celebrates their eccentricities and vulnerabilities with humor and deeply felt emotion. We clearly hear our ancestors and recognize our roots in his writing. Fred Chappell speaks for and to the Southern heart. This book is an experience that should not be missed.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 11, 1997
Format: Hardcover
This is a great book for any Fred Chappell fan. Those readers familiar with Jess and Joe Robert from "I Am One of You Forever" and "Brighten the Corner Where You Are" will recognize the voices of Jess' mother and grandmother as they tell their stories of kit and kin in rural North Carolina. I love the stories about Sherlie Howes (Chappell's interpretation of a mountain Sherlock Holmes). While he doesn't quite capture the feminine voice, I love him for trying -- and for recognizing the importance of Southern women in keeping the stories of our humanity alive. If you're a Chappell fan, you must by this book
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 25, 1997
Format: Hardcover
I loaned my copy out, so I'm relying on memory. Chappell also connects through memory. Farewell I'm Bound to Leave you is young Jess' recollection of the stories -- even the more preposterous ought to be true in this gallery -- told to him by his mother and dying grandmother of neighbors and relations. The delightful tales are refined from the grim landscape of backwoods poverty.

All the stories meld into a novel in the end, but don't try to anticipate a denouement. Cherish each word in silence and discover why peace of mind is the concert hall of melodic prose. Chappell's text ripples aloud and soothes alone.
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