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The Line that Held Us by David Joy

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David Joy has made a quick assent from Ron Rash’s star student at Western Carolina University to a writer called upon by NPR, Time, and Garden and Gun to illuminate the South. The Life that Held Us, his third novel, is a Book-of-the-Month selection! Set in Western North Carolina, this novel begins when Darl Moody accidentally shoots and kills a ginseng digger instead of the monster buck he was hunting. When he realizes that he has killed a member of the vengeful and violent Brewer family, he enlists his friend Calvin Hooper. "Poverty, class, violence, addiction, isolation: No one writes about the issues facing rural America as clearly, as fairly, or as well as David Joy. The Line That Held Us plumbs the depths of friendship and family, uncovering truths that are stamped on the page with blistering realism."—Wiley Cash. “Exquisitely written, heart-wrenching . . . Joy’s descriptions are lyrical and lingering.”—Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. “A suspenseful page-turner, complete with one of the absolutely killer endings that have become one of Joy’s signatures.”—Los Angeles Times. “Unflinching . . . Joy writes about rough-hewn men and women eking out a living in an economically depressed area, trying to avoid—but often affected by—violence and drugs that permeate the region. Their lives are tied to the land, its history and their families who established lives there decades ago.”—Associated Press. “David Joy’s novel brought me to my knees. Exquisitely written and heart-wrenching, it reminded me of Faulkner in its dark depiction of family loyalty — that “old fierce pull of blood.” . . . Joy’s descriptions are lyrical and lingering. . . . In the end, the line that holds Joy’s characters may be fraught and frayed, but its pull is fierce.”—Minneapolis Star Tribune.

New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 2018. 256 pages. Hardback in dust jacket