Wednesday, November 19, 2014

A Poe to Know

For many years now, I've had the opportunity to read Poe Ballantine's work in The Sun magazine, a publication known for its raw, honest, gut wrenching writing.  I recently read Ballantine's Fear and Terror on the Howling Plains of Nowhere, and Things I Like About America, and I very highly recommend both of them. Both of them capture Ballantine's humor, grit, resolve, and fabulous writing, as he writes of his life as a drifter with blue collar jobs, to his eventually getting married and settling down in Chadron, Nebraska, with his wife and son.  I've never met him (though I would love to go to a reading of his someday!), but I feel like I know Ballantine very well after these two books.  He's that great, "undiscovered" writer that you haven't heard of, but beware - he's going to get big someday.  In fact, Cheryl Strayed (of Wild and tiny beautiful things), wrote the intro to Fear and Terror on the Howling Plains of Nowhere, and really sums it up best when she says, "Wow.  Yes.  Jesus. Poe."  His books probably aren't available at your local library, but why not support a local independent press, and purchase some of Poe's books?  You won't regret it!

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