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The Correspondence of Shelby Foote and Walker Percy
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The Correspondence of Shelby Foote and Walker Percy

4.15  ·  Rating Details ·  223 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
In the late 1940s, Walker Percy and Shelby Foote, friends since their teenage years in Greenville, Mississippi, began a correspondence that would last until Percy's death in 1990. Walker Percy, the highly regarded author of The Moviegoer, wrote six novels, two volumes of philosophical writings, and numerous essays. Shelby Foote met with early success as a novelist, but his ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published May 17th 1998 by W. W. Norton & Company (first published 1996)
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Paul Secor
I've only read two of Walker Percy's novels. I've read none of Shelby Foote's novels and have only read the excerpted The Stars in Their Courses: The Gettysburg Campaign from his Civil War Collection. Why would I want to read the collected letters between the two men? The answer is that I once spent a wonderful three hours watching and listening to Shelby Foote being interviewed in the library of his home. If you have three hours to spare and want to spend it with a gracious host: http://www.c-s ...more
Sep 19, 2012 Jonfaith rated it really liked it
I read this one evening after my wife became angry with me. I had been rather stupid and deserved such. I awoke in the middle of the night and found myself drawn to this collection, which I believe I had purchased while we were in Oxford, MS earlier in the year.
Feb 19, 2015 Kent rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Kent by: Russell Moore
Shelves: literary, writing, 2015
Shelby Foote, author of the popular 3-volume The Civil War, and Walker Percy, also a Southern author, grew up together in Mississippi and corresponded with one another up until Percy's death in 1990. This collection of letters begins in 1948, when these two were both 32 years old.

For a book lover like myself, this was a great read. Both Foote and Percy were novelists (which I did not know about Foote) and were devoted to their craft. The emphases of their letters included 1) writing: authors the
James Murphy
Jul 20, 2009 James Murphy rated it it was amazing
I found interesting how these two lifelong friends contrasted in their approach to writing. For almost half the book no Percy letters are included because none were saved. So we have only Foote's brooding and pedantic intelligence, his high sense of self and achievement. Though Percy, when he makes his entrance, demonstrates he's philosophically the heavier hitter he doesn't thrust his confidence forward like a cowcatcher. He seems to radiate a quiet grace and thanks for his gifts. Foote has his ...more
Jed Park
Mar 11, 2013 Jed Park rated it really liked it
Wonderful book. Male friendship isn't a topic you see explored much these days and these two literary giants(ok, maybe Foote was only above average) give an insight into two of Southern Lit's finest.
Mar 23, 2008 Wm rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
I went to school with Shelby Foote's son. I've always been fascinated by his historical work, and the man was a wonderful storyteller.
Sep 22, 2009 Cathy rated it really liked it
Fascinating. Learned how little I know about literature being in on these huge minds discussing it.
Dennis O'Daniel
Interesting their dialogue about writing and books to read
Oct 14, 2011 Ken rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a compilation of letters between two authors who were close friends since their early teens in Greenville Mississippi. I can't remember the last time I recieved a personal letter but at one time it was common for people to sit down and write letters...really, it was.

The letters span four decades with some interesting remarks and opinions expressed about other authors, current events and each others' writing skills and habits. They knew several notable people including Eudora Welty and Di
Sep 20, 2016 Gavin rated it it was amazing
This was wonderful, the only complaint that I have is that Shelby and Walker kept recommending books to each other that of course I added to my reading pile.

A wonderful friendship that sprung from perhaps unlikely childhoods of the time, but more of a pattern today, except I'm not sure about the literary experience. Perhaps that is improper for me to think, but in my search for knowledge, these guys did fairly well in the twentieth-century. That time has passed however, but I think we are the wo
Feb 18, 2012 Lisa rated it really liked it
Lovely book. Longterm friendships between women get their due a hundred times over, so it's refreshing to be privy to a really warm and intimate male relationship. Percy and Foote met as high school students and hit it off instantly, and their friendship lasted until Percy's death -- Foote was with his family at his deathbed. What's nice is reading the letters, of course, but also seeing each man become more of who he was as he got older, married, remarried, had children, published books, did re ...more
Meryal Annison
Oct 28, 2015 Meryal Annison rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
I couldn't find anything I did not like about this book. Not everyone likes first person or autobiographical writing. I'm such a snoop, I relish getting the inside scoop on someone's personal lives and/or opinions. I read about these guys and the names they mention in high school and college modern literature classes. For me, this book was a real joy.
Dec 15, 2011 John rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
What a delight to be able to share in the private epistles of two of America's best writers of the latter 20th century. It is fascinating to read how they move from project to project, discuss the ins and outs of the publishing industry, and the life of a writer.

It has certainly given me the inspiration to read more of their works.
Dave Reidy
May 17, 2008 Dave Reidy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-it-dug-it
Fascinating for writers and readers alike--the tale of two divergent careers. Foote and Percy experience fame and acclaim, but never at the same time. Their friendship persists through it all. One might never imagine that men can sustain each other via letter, but this book proves it happens.
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Shelby Dade Foote, Jr. was an American novelist and a noted historian of the American Civil War, writing a massive, three-volume history of the war entitled The Civil War: A Narrative. With geographic and cultural roots in the Mississippi Delta, Foote's life and writing paralleled the radical shift from the agrarian planter system of the Old South to the Civil Rights era of the New South. Foote wa ...more
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