When Randall Kenan’s first collection was published, the New York Times called it “nothing short of a wonder-book.” Now, with inventiveness seasoned by maturity and shot through with humor, Kenan riffs on appetites of all kinds, on the eerie persistence of history, on unstoppable losses and unexpected salvations.
In Kenan’s fictional territory of Tims Creek, North Carolina, an old man rages in his nursing home, a parson beats up an adulterer, a rich man is haunted by a hog, and an elderly woman turns unwitting miracle worker. A retired plumber travels to Manhattan, where Billy Idol sweeps him into his entourage. An architect who lost his famous lover to AIDS reconnects with a high school fling. Howard Hughes seeks out the woman who once cooked him butter beans.
A rich chorus of voices and visions, dreams and prophecies, marked by physicality and spirit, If I Had Two Wings is a glory.
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