A Permanent Member of the Family (Compact Disc)
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Suffused with Banks' trademark lyricism and reckless humor, the twelve stories in A Permanent Member of the Family examine the myriad of ways we try--and sometimes fail--to connect with one another, as we seek a home in the world. In the title story, a father looks back on the legend of the cherished family dog whose divided loyalties mirrored the fragmenting of his marriage. In "Christmas Party," a young man entertains dark thoughts as he watches his newly remarried ex-wife leading the life he once imagined they would share. "Former Marine" asks, to chilling effect, if one can ever stop being a parent. And in the haunting, evocative "Searching for Veronica," a mysterious woman looking for her missing daughter may not be who she claims she is. Moving between the stark beauty of winter in upstate New York and the seductive heat of Florida, A Permanent Member of the Family charts with subtlety and precision the ebb and flow of both the families we make for ourselves and the ones we're born into, as it asks how we know the ones we love and, in turn, ourselves. One of our most acute and penetrating authors, Banks' virtuosic writing animates stories that are profoundly humane, deeply--and darkly--funny, and absolutely unforgettable.