Blood and Memory

978-1-881515-90-6 Cloth
5.5 x 8.5. 168 pp.
Pub Date: 05/15/2006
Available

Robert Benson’s Blood and Memory is a wonderfully various memoir that combines family history, exact detail, lively anecdote, droll humor, sustained narrative, and wise reflection upon life’s vicissitudes and mysteries. It is a book that rewards reading of any kind. The reader will be repaid by picking up the book at any point and reading a piece at random; the dividends will be considerably greater for intensely engaging the work from beginning to end, for it is artfully shaped, not haphazardly assembled. Its pace is both quick and cumulative in force.

The author unfolds the story of his life in and out of the academy: his adventures and misadventures as son and husband and father; his forays as a hunter and his struggles with dogs and other creatures; his vocation as teacher and writer; his brushes with death as crises in his health occur; his meditations on our common mortality. Of particular interest now are the vivid accounts describing hurricanes in and around New Orleans during the late 1940s and early 50s.

All in all this dazzling work of reminiscence and reflection enriches and enhances our understanding of life’s pitfalls and possibilities. What more can any reader ask of an author?

Published by Texas Review Press