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Heathcock to read from Volt

BY DI STAFF | MARCH 24, 2011 7:20 AM

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Alan Heathcock will read from his first collection of short stories, Volt, at 5 p.m. Saturday at Prairie Lights, 15 S. Dubuque St. Admission is free.

Volt tells of an imaginary town called Krafton, placed in America in which Sheriff and Preacher are the most important offices and hard work and humility are the best virtues. Each story shows society dealing with a tragedy and how sometimes, people fail to maneuver ourselves back to equilibrium.

The collection includes tales of grief, violence, and guilt. A man kills another after neither would move his pickup truck from the road. Another story is a female sheriff attempting to cover up a murder. Another killing is featured in an accident involving a farmer running over his son with a harvesting machine. A positive tale tells of men and women finding peace in their solitude after lashing out at the events of the world around them.

The stories are not chronological and do not lead up to a bigger picture. Characters are not tied together with one person, just the place.

Heathcock’s realism is expressed with an energy that matches the brutality involved with the separate lives of each character.

— by Jessica Carbino


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