Monday, January 25, 2010
One for the Bad Idea Potluck Quote Book
It took me a long time to finish reading Carson McCullers' The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. A friend gave it to me when I was in college and that was a presidency or two ago. It's a beautiful story, but the pacing mirrors the way time passes in the kind of depressed Southern town where the story takes place.
It all paid off for me toward the end as Mick Kelly, a bright young teenager with an intense inner life, sits in a cafe contemplating the shit job she has taken at Woolworth's to support her family. As she enjoys her ice cream and beer, she thinks:
"Next to music beer was best."
Um, it's possible that you have to read the whole thing for that sentence to have the proper impact. Fortunately, you can surely get a copy at your local independent book retailer. The edition I read is pictured above. It has the best illustration on the cover of all editions I have seen.