Nominated for the American Book Award, Ray is the bizarre, hilarious, and consistently adventurous story of a life on the edge. Dr. Ray--a womanizer, small-town drunk, vigilante, poet, adoring husband--is a man trying to make sense of life in the twentieth century. In flight from the death he dealt flying over Vietnam, Dr. Ray struggles with those bound to him by need, sickness, lunacy, by blood and by love.
"A shorthand epic of extraordinary power...a novel of brilliant particulars and dizzying juxtapositions.... Reading it is like turning in one's hand a sharply faceted crystal."--Newsweek
"Will you welcome, please, a sensational new American comic writer, one with poetry in his pulses and witty hot wires in his sentences?"--The New York Times Book Review
"Ray is a song....about the electrics, cool and hot, of being alive."--The Village Voice
"The best young fiction writer to appear in the South since Flannery O'Connor."--Larry McMurtry
"A masterwork of literary jazz.... An intense and readable joy."--Chicago Tribune
"Ray delights, provokes, shocks, amuses on every page. Barry Hannah is an original, vital talent."--Houston Chronicle
"Imagine a Southern De Maupassant entering a Diane Arbus photograph in order to invent fresh juxtapositions of the American language.... Barry Hannah takes fiction by surprise--scenes, shocks, sounds, and amazements: an explosive but meticulous originality."--Cynthia Ozick
"Barry Hannah's writing is raw and exhilarating, tortured, radiant, vicious, aggressive, funny, and streaked with rage, pain, and bright, poetic truth."--The Philadelphia Inquirer
"This novel hangs in the memory like a fishhook. It will haunt you long after you have finally put it down. Barry Hannah is a talent to reckon with, and I can only hope that Ray finds an audience it deserves."--Harry Crews, Washington Post Book World
"Barry Hannah is an original, vital talent. His style is exuberant, impressionistic, and highly compressed.... Reading this novel is not a passive experience. It delights, provokes, shocks, amuses on every page."--Houston Chronicle
"Ray is the funniest, weirdest, soul-happiest work of fiction by a genuinely young American author that I've read in a long while. You need a fresh lingo to do justice to this much magic, mystery, and hilarity."--Benjamin DeMott, The New York Times Book Review
Barry Hannah was born in Clinton, Mississippi. His first novel, Geronimo Rex, was awarded the William Faulkner Prize and nominated for the National Book Award. A second novel, Nightwatchmen, was followed by Airships, a collection of stories, which won the Arnold Gingrich Short Fiction Award. Among Hannah's other books are The Tennis Handsome, Captain Maximus, Hey Jack!, Boomerang, Never Die, and Bats Out of Hell. His 1996 short story collection, High Lonesome, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. He currently holds a position as a writer-in-residence at the University of Mississippi and lives in Oxford with his wife, Susan.