Winner of the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Fiction and first released in November, 2006, this collection of loosely connected tales returns readers to the American Northwest so finely observed and powerfully evoked in John Keeble's previous, celebrated works.
Nocturnal America occupies a terrain at once familiar and strange, where homecoming and dislocation can coincide, and families can break apart or hone themselves on the hard edges of daily life. In these stories, Keeble populates what journalist Joel Garreau once called the “Empty Quarter” of North America with complex humanity. Life ranges vibrantly through these airy spaces, at times finding itself thrown up against the shifty terrors of political change and the antic scrim of culture.
"John Keeble's beautifully rendered short story collection, Nocturnal America, examines the power of family, love, and place . . . an outstanding collection."
Sybil Downing, The Denver Post.
“[Keeble] is absolutely convincing in the viewpoints of both men and women, and has a lovely ability to drop luminous observation into an apparently mundane moment of the narrative.”
Janet Burroway, author of Raw Silk and Writing Fiction.
"John Keeble's hands are the right ones. His Nocturnal America . . . is planted in the American Northwest, and it uses as its raw material the wind, rain, fire, snow, horses, cattle, mosquitoes, mud, porcupines and chickens that are plentiful in that place. Keeble presents the brutal landscape with ambivalence, so that a reader is sometimes moved to ask: Who could live here? Only to answer a few pages later: Who wouldn't want to try?"
Ellen Slezak, Los Angeles Times Book Review.
". . . John Keeble was publishing short stories before his breakout novel, 1980's Yellowfish. He has stuck with the form, despite distinguished forays into novels and nonfiction, ever since. His new collection, Nocturnal America showcases the sweep of his career, from 1976 to 2004. Nocturnal America is a supremely satisfying set of nine loosely connected stories that interweave raw emotion, spiritual searching and violence--sometimes the implied physical threat that trembles under the skin of every day events; sometimes murder."