Southern Cross the Dog

Southern Cross the Dog

Book - 2013
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"An epic odyssey in which a young man must choose between the lure of the future and the claims of the past With clouds looming ominously on the horizon, a group of children play among the roots of the gnarled Bone Tree. Their games will be interrupted by a merciless storm-bringing with it the Great Flood of 1927-but not before Robert Chatham shares his first kiss with the beautiful young Dora. The flood destroys their homes, disperses their families, and wrecks their innocence. But for Robert, a boy whose family has already survived unspeakable pain, that single kiss will sustain him for years to come. Losing virtually everything in the storm's aftermath, Robert embarks on a journey through the Mississippi hinterland-from a desperate refugee camp to the fiery brothel Hotel Beau-Miel and into the state's fearsome swamp, meeting piano-playing hustlers, well-intentioned whores, and a family of fierce and wild fur trappers along the way. But trouble follows close on his heels, fueling Robert's conviction that he's marked by the devil and nearly destroying his will to survive. And just when he seems to shake off his demons, he's forced to make an impossible choice that will test him as never before. Teeming with language that voices both the savage beauty and the complex humanity of the American South, Southern Cross the Dog is a tour de force of literary imagination that heralds the arrival of a major new voice in fiction."--Dust jacket flap.
Publisher: New York : Ecco/HarperCollins Publishers, 2013.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780062225009
Call Number: CHENG
Characteristics: 324 p. ; 24 cm
Subjects: Young men -- Fiction.
Floods -- Mississippi River Valley -- 20th century -- Fiction.
Survival -- Fiction.
Friendship -- Fiction.
Southern States -- 20th century -- Fiction.
Mississippi River -- Fiction.
Southern writing.
Historical fiction.


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Aug 29, 2017

It was a beautiful story with captivating prose but I don't expect an Ai takeover any time soon. This book was recommended to me by amazon and Goodreads because I like Cormac McCarthy. While he's no Cormac he is published and I'm not, so who really cares what I think. Besides he is a gifted author and I would gladly read all of his catalogue which rarely happens so that says something. I do think my ex wife/fiancé might be right though and I'm way too suggestible to be checking out Ai suggestions.

Sep 03, 2013

Did not like it as much as I anticipated. It was really slow getting into the story, only to finish it and realizing that there wasn't much to get into in the first place. I felt like I may have wasted my time on this one.

mvkramer Sep 02, 2013

At first the book seemed kind of me, the character's emotions not very immediate, but it deepened over the course of the book, and by the time we got to Dora's chapter the emotion was as raw as you could hope for. Maybe this is a bit narrow-minded, but I still think books about the African-American experience by African-American authors are a bit more...real, and I would recommend reading the classics of African-American literature to anyone who even mildly liked this book. Bill Cheng has a way with words, and this book is worth reading slowly just to appreciate the artful craft of his language.


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mvkramer Sep 02, 2013

In 1927, a flood turns the lives of many poor, African-American residents of Issaquena County upside down. One of them is Robert Chatham, a boy whose older brother was lynched for his relationship with a white woman. Years later, Robert is still wandering through life, working at a whorehouse, waiting for another accident to cut him adrift. Another is Dora, a girl who ends up sold to a trapper by her own uncle.


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