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James Hannaham

Delicious Foods

James Hannaham Delicious Foods
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Biographical note:

James Hannaham was born in the Bronx and grew up in Yonkers, New York. He is the author of the novel GOD SAYS NO (McSweeney's, 2009). He teaches creative writing at the Pratt Institute and Columbia University.

Main description:

"A tour de force" (Jennifer Egan) about a widow's efforts to be reunited with her son.

Darlene, a young widow and mother devastated by the death of her husband, turns to drugs to erase the trauma. In this fog of grief, she is lured with the promise of a great job to a mysterious farm run by a shady company, with disastrous consequences for both her and her eleven-year-old son, Eddie--left behind in a panic-stricken search for her.

DELICIOUS FOODS tells the gripping story of three unforgettable characters: a mother, her son, and the drug that threatens to destroy them. In Darlene's haunted struggle to reunite with Eddie, and in the efforts of both to triumph over those who would enslave them, Hannaham's daring and shape-shifting prose not only infuses their desperate circusmtances with grace and humor, but also wrestles with timeless questions of love and freedom.

Review quote:

"A tender, funny tour of a mind struggling to do the right thing. A revelatory and sympathetic guide to a misunderstood world."—Steve Martin

Review quote:

"GOD SAYS NO is a book that was desperate to be written but well out of reach. And then James Hannaham came along and wrote it, with the kind of care, wit, sympathy and fury that the book deserved. Imagine Candide . . . okay, imagine Candide as a black man, a southerner, a Christian fundamentalist, middle-class, obese, married, a father, and utterly, even profoundly gay. If a comedy, in the classical sense, is a story then ends in a marriage, and a tragedy is a story that ends with a death, then what do you call a book that ends with a split and a resurrection? A truly daring first novel, and something to read."—Jim Lewis

Review quote:

Advance praise for DELICIOUS FOODS:

"James Hannaham's new novel is a tour de force. Gripping, haunting, and deeply moving, it beguiles the reader with the urgent immediacy of its characters' lives, while also reverberating with universal themes of freedom and enslavement, love and survival."-- Jennifer Egan, Pulitzer Prize winner for A Visit from the Goon Squad

Review quote:

Praise for GOD SAYS NO, Hannaham's first novel (McSweeney's, 2009):

"As familiar as this setup might seem from a dozen shame-drenched political press conferences, Hannaham shifts the trajectory in an unpredictable story that zigzags from the Atlanta avant garde theater scene to a religious reparative therapy program called Resurrection Ministries, where men like Gary struggle to purge their sinful desires . . . GOD SAYS NO follows as that drama unfolds in original, startling ways."—Salon


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