Saints at the River
By Ron Rash
(Picador, Paperback, 9780312424916, 256pp.)
Publication Date: June 16, 2005
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
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When a twelve-year-old girl drowns in the Tamassee River and her body is trapped in a deep eddy, the people of the small South Carolina town that bears the river's name are thrown into the national spotlight. The girl's parents want to attempt a rescue of the body; environmentalists are convinced the rescue operation will cause permanent damage to the river and set a dangerous precedent. Torn between the two sides is Maggie Glenn, a twenty-eight-year-old newspaper photographer who grew up in the town and has been sent to document the incident. Since leaving home almost ten years ago, Maggie has done her best to avoid her father, but now, as the town's conflict opens old wounds, she finds herself revisiting the past she's fought so hard to leave behind.
Winner of an NEA poetry fellowship, Ron Rash has published one previous novel, One Foot in Eden, three collections of poetry, and two of short stories. He holds the John Parris Chair in Appalachian Studies at Western Carolina University. He lives in South Carolina.
“A compelling novel...Rash tells his story with subtlety and with the best kind of empathy." --The Wall Street Journal
"Captivating...Rash's clear, concise prose and regional voice add an authentic veneer to this rich tableau of Southern life." --Entertainment Weekly
"Ron Rash writes like a prince." --Pat Conroy
"“Maggie is an ideal observer from the center for things. Her knowing voice carries us through this sad, complex, and beautiful story." --Time Out (New York)
"Rash's clean prose and love for the land easily carry this book to its conclusion, providing readers with a powerful ending that is both surprising and well earned." --The Charlotte Observer
"Shows [Rash's] versatility and chutzpah...Rash's prose... has a peculiar headlong drive akin to that of hard-boiled detective novels--the best sort." --The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
"Fluid...Rash's prose sparkles....He does the best thing a writer can do: entrench the reader in a scene." --Greensboro News & Record
"Gripping...Spare, resonant, unputdownable." --Kirkus Reviews (starred review)