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Town Smokes

4.09  ·  Rating Details ·  177 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
A widely hailed first collection of stories set mostly in the rural South.
Paperback, 168 pages
Published May 17th 1987 by Ontario Review Press
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Nov 20, 2011 Peacegal rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Town Smokes is a book of short stories, which often centered on the interactions between rural people and animals—which particularly interested me. We see occasional compassion, such as that of a family that became too attached to the rabbits they bred to sell them for meat, but the majority of these interactions are characterized by the casual cruelty of a man scooping up fleeing crawdads and dumping them into a boiling pot. This is a world of shooting harmful-only-to-rodents black snakes and j ...more
Aug 15, 2007 Swaps55 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of southern lit
Shelves: southern-writers
Call me biased, as the author was my mentor/advisor/etc. in college, but he really is one of the best writers I've ever read, and taught me just about everything I know about how to not just write a story, but write a good one. They are full of southern/appalachia flavor, so if you are a fan of southern writers you absolutley must have this on your shelf.
Aug 22, 2007 Sheryl rated it it was amazing
This is another book I'd grab upon fleeing my burning house. I am stingy with my books, but this is one I loan and sometimes give to people I love. In fact, who has it right now? I want it back. Ple-ee-ase...
Charles White
Dec 30, 2009 Charles White rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
"The Sutton Pie Safe" and "Town Smokes" are both excellent stories. Many of the others seemed to lack something for me.
Jan 12, 2017 Jeff rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Perhaps my favorite book in the subgenre of Appalachian fiction. Darkly funny, sad, violent, and original.
Eldonfoil TH*E Whatever Champion
His prose is good, but the first and last stories ("The Sutton Pie Safe" and "Town Smokes") are the only ones that move beyond chatter and shoot toward real insight. "Town Smokes" (the story, not the collection) was particularly effective, dark, and fatalistic, moving from the mundane towards something far more haunting, timeless, even allegorical. That story alone makes the collection valuable, but no one should mistake this for Breece Pancake. It appears that Benedict crafts stories about a pe ...more
May 16, 2008 Joseph rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Benedict's true expertise seems to be the short story.
Dec 09, 2016 Marvin rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
Solid collection of stories focused on rural characters.
Oct 12, 2012 Kim rated it liked it
Shelves: appalachia
A couple amazing stories and some just so so. Almost all the stories involve the relationship between people and animals in the south. I found that interesting. The Pie Safe was my fav.
Rick Saunders
Rick Saunders rated it really liked it
Nov 17, 2014
Brian Conn
Brian Conn rated it really liked it
Feb 24, 2013
Cary Jones
Cary Jones rated it it was amazing
Jul 08, 2014
Ernest Taulbee
Ernest Taulbee rated it it was amazing
Jul 25, 2016
Fatuma Abdullahi
Fatuma Abdullahi rated it did not like it
Oct 12, 2012
Ryan Blacketter
Ryan Blacketter rated it it was amazing
Oct 01, 2013
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Cynthia McCloud rated it it was amazing
Sep 01, 2011
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Dec 31, 2011
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Sep 11, 2008
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Feb 06, 2008
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Nov 12, 2013
Keith rated it it was amazing
Nov 09, 2007
Rob rated it it was amazing
May 15, 2016
Devin Murphy
Devin Murphy rated it it was amazing
Nov 29, 2016
O'Malley rated it really liked it
Aug 07, 2007
Nigel Wright
Nigel Wright rated it really liked it
Apr 19, 2014
Ken rated it it was amazing
Jun 23, 2016
Martin rated it it was ok
Nov 16, 2013
Sheldon Compton
Sheldon Compton rated it it was amazing
Sep 04, 2012
Sheryl Monks
Sheryl Monks rated it it was amazing
Jun 26, 2016
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Mimi Mi rated it really liked it
Aug 20, 2014
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Pinckney Benedict (b. 1964) is an American short-story writer and novelist whose work often reflects his Appalachian background.

Benedict grew up on his family’s dairy farm in Greenbrier County, West Virginia. He graduated from Princeton University, where he studied primarily with Joyce Carol Oates, in 1986, and from the Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa in 1988.

He has published three col
More about Pinckney Benedict...

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