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The Cailiffs of Baghdad, Georgia

A Novel

Mary Helen Stefaniak

Hardcover

List Price: 24.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.

Other Editions of This Title:
Digital Audiobook (9/30/2010)
Paperback (6/17/2005)
Paperback (9/19/2011)
Hardcover (6/1/2004)
Audio Cassette (10/1/2010)
MP3 CD (10/15/2010)
Compact Disc (10/15/2010)
Compact Disc (10/15/2010)

Description

A big-hearted story of a Depression-era small town turned upside down by a worldly teacher.


Narrator Gladys Cailiff is eleven years old in 1938 when a new, well-traveled young schoolteacher turns a small Georgia town upside down. Miss Grace Spivey believes in field trips, Arabian costumes, and reading aloud from her ten-volume set of The Thousand Nights and a Night. The real trouble begins when she decides to revive the annual town festival as an exotic Baghdad bazaar. Miss Spivey transforms the lives of everyone around her: Gladys's older brother Force (with his movie-star looks), her pregnant sister May (a gifted storyteller herself), and especially the Cailiffs' African American neighbor, young Theo Boykin, whose creative genius becomes the key to a colorful, hidden history of the South.



Populated by unforgettable characters—including three impressive camels—The Cailiffs of Baghdad, Georgia rides a magic carpet from a segregated schoolroom in Georgia to the banks of the Tigris (and back again) in an entrancing feat of storytelling.


Praise For The Cailiffs of Baghdad, Georgia: A Novel

Wonderfully seductive, one of those rare books you disappear into wholly. It’s joyous, shamelessly funny, heartbreaking, and page after page it gives you what you didn’t expect. This is a novel you’ll want to hand deliver to a friend.
— David Long, author of The Inhabited World

Wonderfully engaging … a great tribute to the power of education, strong women and the fine art of storytelling… an intricate dazzling pattern of history and imagination and truth.
— Jill McCorkle, author of Going Away Shoes

A heartfelt, redemptive, and irresistible novel. Stefaniak knows that every story is many stories, and she handles the complex tales of romance, family, race relations, and secrets with intelligence, grace, and tenderness.
— John Dufresne, author of Louisiana Power & Light and Love Warps the Mind a Little

Mary Helen Stefaniak is a born storyteller, with a fantastic gift for mingling the exotic and the ordinary, the comic and the heartrending. Her tale of drastic change coming to a small Southern town in the 1930s is filled with wild incidents, vivid characters, and a surprise at every turn—a delight to read.
— Lynne Sharon Schwartz, author of Ruined by Reading: A Life in Books

This novel has strong, long legs. I hope it walks forever. Besides delivering suspenseful, eloquently detailed, non-sentimental prose, it spoons out a big dose of clarity that America needs.
— Clyde Edgerton, author of The Bible Salesman

W. W. Norton & Company, 9780393063103, 352pp.

Publication Date: September 6, 2010



About the Author

Mary Helen Stefaniak is the prize-winning author of The Turk and My Mother, Self Storage and Other Stories, and The Cailiffs of Baghdad, Georgia. She lives in Omaha and Iowa City.


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