Shelfari edited the description of In the Heart of the Heart of the Country Friday, August 7, 2009.
IN THIS SUITE of five short pieces -- one of the unqualified literary masterpieces of the American 1960s -- William Gass finds five beautiful forms in which to explore the signature theme of his fiction: the solitary soul’s poignant, conflicted, and doomed pursuit of love and community. In their obsessions, Gass’s Midwestern dreamers are like the "grotesques" of Sherwood Anderson, but in their hyper-linguistic streams of consciousness, they are the match for Joyce’s Dubliners. First published in 1968, this book begins with a beguiling thirty-three page essay and has five fictions: the celebrated novella "The Pedersen Kid," "Mrs. Mean," "Icicles," "Order of Insects," and the title story.