Customer Reviews


13 Reviews
5 star:
 (9)
4 star:    (0)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:
 (2)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good intro to an American original
Other reviews here suggest that Hannah is still controversial. Unlike, say, readers of Samuel Beckett or Ben Marcus, with their reputations for difficulty, readers who buy without sampling Hannah are often in for a shock. He's always had trouble finding his audience because he's such a singularity: Southern, yes, but not easy like Flannery O'Connor or stylistically...
Published on July 4, 2011 by Bartolo

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars An Iconic Southern Writer
Hannah is recognized as a major contributor in the Southern writing racket. He's not my favorite, but what do I know? He seems to have been a very charismatic, generally likeable fellow, from watching an interview on Youtube
Published 6 months ago by A. Levine


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good intro to an American original, July 4, 2011
By 
Bartolo (New York City, New York USA) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Long, Last, Happy: New and Collected Stories (Hardcover)
Other reviews here suggest that Hannah is still controversial. Unlike, say, readers of Samuel Beckett or Ben Marcus, with their reputations for difficulty, readers who buy without sampling Hannah are often in for a shock. He's always had trouble finding his audience because he's such a singularity: Southern, yes, but not easy like Flannery O'Connor or stylistically elegant like stream-of-consciousness Faulkner, he's a creative, twisty wordsmith while being down home and earthy, alien to most Lofty Northeastern postgraduate tastes, possessing an essentially comic vision when timeless literature supposedly calls for solemnity.

Years ago I was hooked by "Airships." Philip Roth's blurb convinced me to buy the book, and the many notable tributes that followed suggest that Hannah is a writer's writer: the more you value originality and inventiveness, the more you'll be impressed. I read everything he published thereafter.

So I bought this compilation only for the three stories previously unpublished. They were worth it: late Hannah was the best ever. Some writers were obviously influenced by him but he was, and always will be, sui generis. He can slow your reading speed, but every sentence is remarkable, and there is no filler at all. My favorites are here, "High Water Railers" and "Get Some Young," to name two. I would recommend "Long, Last, Happy" to readers who want a great introduction to this richly American original.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Master In His Nearly Full and Sadly Final Glory, January 29, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Long, Last, Happy: New and Collected Stories (Hardcover)
Hannah was one of God's greatest gifts to language. Hannah twisted and turned it made it astonish, made it hilarious and grotesquely real. No, he's not often easy reading. He might even be, probably is, an acquired taste. He didn't write page turners. He is too astonishing, page by page, too hilarious, to tell a straight narrative. He was the very best at what he did and I wish he were describing it because words fail me. The only way to know him is to read him, and there's no one more worth reading. He was the great magician of the sentence.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, September 24, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Long, Last, Happy: New and Collected Stories (Hardcover)
Barry is always great- sadly deceased-his characters are strange but relatable and always win me over in the end- what is it about the underdogs, the forgotten, the lovely that are so endearing to a soul? Because they are all of us. Here's one for the underdogs!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3.0 out of 5 stars An Iconic Southern Writer, February 27, 2014
By 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Long, Last, Happy: New and Collected Stories (Hardcover)
Hannah is recognized as a major contributor in the Southern writing racket. He's not my favorite, but what do I know? He seems to have been a very charismatic, generally likeable fellow, from watching an interview on Youtube
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars If you like Flannery O'Connor.., January 14, 2014
Barry Hannah had a soul as deep as they come. His nimbleness and mastery with language is really special. With his humor I am reminded of my times reading the too few in number of texts of Flannery O'Connor and John Kennedy O'Toole; as well makes me think of Bill Hicks. I have now found my favorite author.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars I read it because I had to, April 4, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I read this book because it was required for an advanced modern literature class. I didn't think I would like it but really enjoyed the content. Amazon definitely has the best prices and super fast shipping. Thanks again for a great Amazon purchase!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Sin and Mystery, April 1, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
"Long, Last, Happy", Barry Hannah's posthumously published collection of short stories, thirty-one in all, comprises a fitting memorial to the man who would be Faulkner. Was he that good? Probably not. Was he as important? Certainly to many writers. Their tributes to him as teacher, mentor, friend and drinking buddy, collected by Oxford American for its Spring 2011 issue (#72) make the case. Donna Tartt said this about his voice: "His ear for language was so pure and true that his writing classes were more like master classes in music."

How did he come by that "true and pure" voice? "I write out of a need for lives and language . . . . I write to share" he wrote in an early piece for O. A. (#20). Coming of age in Clinton, Mississippi, "the little old tiny-headed women . . . established the tone of my world . . . . I picked up the rhythms of Scripture for my tales, but it was mystery and sin that had me."

True enough. The stories in "Long, Last, Happy" are soaked in sin and mystery, pure and true. "Uncle High Lonesome" tells the story of the young narrator's admiration for his Uncle Peter (for whom he was named). Badgered constantly by his wife, "a fastidious and abrasive country woman . . . a hag of unnecessary truths at family gatherings," the Uncle takes refuge in his hunting and fishing trips with his nephew (and with a woman in town).The young boy needs and admires his uncle's manly traits, skills his own father lacked.. "He could make money and drive (too slowly) but the processes of life eluded him." Not that he didn't love his dad. "I've never met such a humble pilgrim of his own country as my father."

If Hannah had no other story to his credit, "Uncle High Lonesome would guarantee his place in American letters. The fact is that there are several more as good, or nearly as good. In "High-Water Railers," Melanie, "her skin still fine for a woman in her seventies" takes a plate of cookies down to the pier for the old duffers gathered there for the morning's fishing. Sensing that they may see her as cut above them socially, she refuses to be put on a pedestal. "I'm not that innocent lads . . . I cavorted. I was a looker."

"Mother Rooney Unscrolls the Hurt," one of the stories Hannah is admired for, tells the life of a good Catholic woman who spent her widow years operating a worse-for-wear boarding house for men, most of them down on their luck if not out of it altogether. They are her boys, each with his place in her affections, each forgiven for ultimately leaving her to her memories. As she scrolls back through her recollections to her family years she comes to the time her only child, a boy, "didn't even know he had his man's business between his legs." Once he caught on, he and his mother referred to it as "Billy." "He would want to know which neighbors had Billy. He asked if the air, clowns, toy soldiers and Cream of Wheat had Billy. I told him no, and we divided the world like that, with Billy and no Billy."

Not all the stories are that good, but none of them are truly bad, even if they seem to have been written when the author was not at his best. Put another way, Hannah at half speed is better than most short story writers at full tilt.

End note. Hannah, brought down by cancer and the accumulated effects of his hard living early days, died of a heart attack at age 67. He learned just the weekend before he died that this book, aptly titled as it turned out, was about to be published.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars LONG, LAST, HAPPY, January 21, 2012
By 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Long, Last, Happy: New and Collected Stories (Hardcover)
The late Barry Hannah was one of contemporary America's more unique writers. Witty and profound, his stories have a wild
quality, as if the mind and body have been let loose to wreak havoc yet still embrace sentimentality. Like Faulkner, Hannah
loved the past of the humid South, and knew it was never really past, yet his stories are anchored in the sweaty present,
and his heart is always raw and dodging more unexpected blows.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Great collection, January 20, 2012
By 
R. Weiss (Lorain, Ohio United States) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Received in good order. The late Barry Hannah wrote well, and these stories are a generous sampling of his career work. He will be missed.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Ever = 5 Stars, Not 1 Like Other Reviews, December 22, 2010
This review is from: Long, Last, Happy: New and Collected Stories (Hardcover)
When I was a boy I always enjoyed a well-done fireworks show. Viewing the single explosions to the multi-explosions at the same time were enough to make my jaw drop and eyes open as big as saucers. My parents also pulled me away crying and kicking since I wanted more more MORE!

This book reminded me of my childhood. The book contains four new stories. Hanna is the best. The wit is caustic (acidic?. Social commentary abounds. Many a laugh will be had with the slapstick comedy. I suggest you don't read it in bed with your partner since you may wake him up...

The new stories--"Fire Water," "Sick Soldier at Your Door," "Lastward, Deputy James," and "Out-tell the Teller"-- are all excellent. Each presents a different angle on a series of arson attacks on small churches. The subject matter is downright serious, but Hannah never abandons his smile. He is able to shift, mid-story, between boyhood hijinks and the looming threat of Vietnam in "Testimony of Pilot." He comes very close to going to Canada after his Mother clearly states that she will hit him in the knee with a baseball bat if he is at all drafted. Having recent knee surgery I could sense and understand his pain and fear. Sometimes Mothers are not nice, not nice at all but I guess they are just trying to be...well Mothers. This collection reminds that Hannah, even in life, will always be "on the white and chrome Harley, riding right into your face with a good kick in the nuts."
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Long, Last, Happy: New and Collected Stories
Long, Last, Happy: New and Collected Stories by Barry Hannah (Hardcover - December 1, 2010)
$27.50 $11.09
In Stock
Add to cart Add to wishlist
Search these reviews only
Rate and Discover Movies
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.