In her first work of nonfiction, Lee Smith deploys the wit, wisdom, and graceful prose for which she is beloved to conjure her early days in the small coal town of Grundy, Virginia-and beyond. For the inimitable Lee Smith, place is paramount. For forty-five years, her fiction has lived and breathed with the rhythms and people of the Appalachian South. But never before has she written her own story. Set deep in the rugged Appalachian Mountains, the Grundy of Lee Smith's youth was a place of coal miners, mountain music, and her daddy's dimestore. It was in that dimestore--listening to customers and inventing life histories for the store's dolls--that she began to learn the craft of storytelling. Even though she adored Grundy, Smith's formal education and travels took her far from Virginia, though her Appalachian upbringing never left her. Dimestore's fifteen essays are crushingly honest, always wise, and superbly entertaining. Smith has created both a moving, personal portrait and a broader meditation on embracing one's heritage. Hers is an inspiring story of the birth of a writer and a poignant look at a way of life that has all but vanished. "You know how in Lee Smith's fiction there's always something so fresh, crazy, and loving? In Dimestore is the essence of Lee." -Roy Blount Jr., author of Alphabetter Juice: or, The Joy of Text
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by Lee Smith
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"Lee Smith's memoir of her roots in the small coal town of Grundy, Virginia, and her career as a writer and teacher is enhanced by the smooth, seasoned narration of Linda Stephens. As Stephens shares Smith's collection of essays, which explore the indelible influence that the Appalachian region had on her imagination and creative life, listeners will begin to believe she IS the author. Bringing to life a forgotten world of local dime stores and a distinctive region with its own passions and eccentricities, Stephens casts a spell and breathes insight into Smith's candid observations on her early life and on the long transformation of her crafts--as both writer and teacher. An entertaining listen, touched with nostalgia but not sentimental. J.C.G. © AudioFile 2016, Portland, Maine"
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