By John Brandon
At the best ground of a small sanatorium, an not likely piano prodigy lies in a coma, attended to by way of his gruff, helpless father. open air the hospital, a motley vigil assembles underneath a reluctant New Mexico winter—strangers looking for solutions, a broom with the paranormal, or simply an get away. to a couple the boy is a novelty, to others a faith. simply past this ragtag circle roams a disconsolate wolf on his nightly rounds, retaining and perilous, studying an excessive amount of. And above all of them, a would-be angel sits captive in a retaining mobile of the afterlife, completing the paintings he all started on the earth, writing the songs which may unfastened him. This not going assortment—a small-town mayor, a vengeful guitarist, all of the unseen wilderness lives—unites to weave a many times hopeful tale of inconceivable communion.
Upon the discharge of John Brandon's final novel, Citrus County, the New York Times declared that he "joins the ranks of writers like Denis Johnson, pleasure Williams, Mary Robison and Tom Drury." Now, with A Million Heavens, Brandon brings his deadpan humor and hard-won empathy to a brand new realm of gritty surrealism—a marvelous and fascinating flip from the most effective younger novelists of our time.
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Extra info for A Million Heavens (McSweeney's Rectangulars)
In his search for the fabled Seven Cities of Gold, his men explored an area that extended from Arizona eastward into Kansas. In 1565, 42 years before the Jamestown 53 54 The United States of America settlement was established, a Spanish foothold was built at St. Augustine (Florida). In the Southwest, the Spanish established a regional capital in Santa Fe (New Mexico) in 1610, a full decade before the Pilgrims settled at Plymouth, Massachusetts. EUROPEAN ROOTS IN AMERICAN SOIL Early European settlement in what is now the United States shows distinct regional differences in political and cultural dominance.
There is no doubt, for example, that when Europeans “discovered” the “New World,” they reached a land that already had been settled thousands of years earlier. Further, most native peoples showed physical features that tied them to a geographic origin somewhere in East Asia. The aboriginal population at the time of European contact remains in doubt. Estimates range widely, but it is probable that they numbered about 2 to 3 million. What is known is that soon after Europeans arrived, warfare and European diseases (against which native peoples had no natural immunity) decimated native populations.
Ironically, the nation’s safest areas—the Great Plains and much of the Great Basin—have the lowest population density, the highest out-migration, and the lowest property values. The following list presents the nation’s 10 worst natural disasters in terms of loss of life. In all instances, figures are esti- mates, some of which vary greatly: 1900 Hurricane (Galveston, Texas) 6,000–12,000 1928 Hurricane (Florida Atlantic Coast) 2,500 1871 Forest fire (Peshtigo, Wisconsin) 1,200–2,500 1889 Flood (Johnstown, Pennsylvania) 2,210 1893 Hurricane (coastal Louisiana) 2,000 2005 Hurricane (New Orleans and Louisiana and Mississippi coasts) 2,000 1893 Hurricane (Sea Islands of South Carolina and Georgia) 1,500 1906 Earthquake (San Francisco, California) 500–3,000 1925 Tornadoes (Midwest) 727 1938 Hurricane (New England) 720 Such figures are quite alarming, but to put them in per- spective, the total of the above list is 29,000 deaths.
A Million Heavens (McSweeney's Rectangulars) by John Brandon