A Death in the Family (Penguin Classics) by James Agee

By James Agee

The vintage American novel, re-published for the a hundredth anniversary of James Agee's birth

Published in 1957, years after its author's dying on the age of forty-five, A loss of life within the Family remains a near-perfect murals, an autobiographical novel that includes probably the most evocative depictions of loss and grief ever written. As Jay Follet hurries again to his domestic in Knoxville, Tennessee, he's killed in a motor vehicle accident—a tragedy that destroys not just a existence, but additionally the household happiness and contentment of a tender relatives. a singular of significant braveness, lyric strength, and robust emotion, A dying within the Family is a masterpiece of yankee literature.

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Sample text

It was not really anything of a separation, yet he was surprised to find that it seemed to him a grave one, perhaps because his business was grave, or because of the solemn hour. He saw this in her face as well, and almost wished they had waked the children after all. “Good-bye, Mary,” he said. ” They kissed, and her head settled for a moment against him. He stroked her hair. ” The moment of full tenderness between them was dissolved in their thought, but he continued gently to stroke the round back of her head.

She asked. “Gee, I don’t know,” he said, getting the egg down (don’t talk with your mouth full) before he answered. He was not yet quite awake enough to be very hungry, but he was touched, and determined to eat a big breakfast. ” She covered the Pancake to keep it hot and poured another. He noticed that she had peppered the eggs more heavily than usual. “Good eggs,” he said. She was pleased. Not more than half consciously, she had done this because within a few hours he would doubtless eat again, at home.

Each continued to look into the other’s tired eyes, and their tired eyes sparkled, but not with realizations which reached their hearts very distinctly. ” he asked. ” She was taken very much by surprise. “Why you nice thing! ” “You think it over,” he said. “Whatever you’d like best—within reason, of course,” he joked. “I’ll see we manage it. ” They both remembered at the same time. ” Her eyes lost focus for a moment. “Let’s hope it will,” she said, in a peculiarly abstracted voice. He watched her.

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