A Family Affair
Posted by: Donna Seaman
The next year will bring a torrent of arresting literary memoirs, memoirs by writers about literary parents or husbands or near-relatives. Joyce Carol Oates remembers her late editor husband, Raymond Smith, in A Widow’s Story. Anne Roiphe chronicles her stint as muse to her unstable first husband in a forthcoming memoir. Gail Godwin sheds light on her “apprentice years” and a doomed marriage in the second volume of her journals. Alexandra Styron has written a memoir about her father, William Styron. Sigrid Nunez has a book coming out about her mentor Susan Sontag, with whom she lived for a spell. In a forthcoming memoir, Sally Ryder Brady shares painful truths about her late husband, Upton, former editor-in-chief for Atlantic Monthly Press. And in Townie, Andre Dubus III portrays his father, Andre Dubus, Jr. (1936-1999), a virtuoso short story writer whose concentrated and penetrating books are no longer as well known as they should be. Perhaps today’s release of Dubus’ indelible books in ebook editions by Open Road Integrated Media will attract new readers.
The list includes Adultery and Other Choices, The Times are Never So Bad, The Last Worthless Evening, Broken Vessels, and Finding a Girl in America, the collection in which “Killings” is found, the story that inspired the movie In the Bedroom (2001), starring Sissy Spacek, Tom Wilkinson, and Marisa Tomei. To help reintroduce Andre Dubus, a phenomenally empathic and precise writer of emotion, candor, and spirit, Open Road has produced a series of videos. Here’s a short film with a great soundtrack featuring Dubus and three of his children, Andre Dubus III, Suzanne Dubus, and Jeb Dubus.