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Icy Current, Compulsive Course

Icy Current, Compulsive Course by Gaither Stewart
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Over the course of four years, Mexico, New York City, Paris and Rome served as backdrops for the construction of Icy Current. Thus divided by geophysical region, the first group of stories contrasts, with a good dose of irony, the distinct lifestyles of the Gringo and the Mexican inhabitants of the small town of San Miguel de Allende in the high country north of Mexico City.

The Italians of the main body of Icy Current, Compulsive Course reveal an unexpected vision of life in Europe’s most exotic country. Gaither Stewart’s Italy is vastly different from the nation that exists in glossy tourist brochures. Characters peopling stories like "The Train" and "Nobody Out There" and "The Village Sagra" are emblematic of the real loneliness in a country where solitude is taboo. The stories of this ephemeral Italy will bewilder some readers and delight others.

Stewart says his short stories are the point of departure for most of his fiction. "The more the writer is immersed in the lives of the persons he depicts, the better he can avoid troublesome autobiographical references and abstractions. In that sense the short story helps me establish the tone of most of my writing — a personal viewpoint via an identifiable point of view. "The short story gives the writer an immediate sense of satisfaction in that it is quickly accessible for the reader. Whether on a mountainside or the seashore, on an ocean voyage or a long distance train, the reader in a short space of time is able to leap straight into the mind of the writer."

Wind River Press; March 2002
301 pages; ISBN 9780972151313
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Title: Icy Current, Compulsive Course
Author: Gaither Stewart
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