“Some writers,” Wilton Barnhardt notes, “pile up the details and never quite convince us we’re standing where they say we are; some writers in a sentence or two capture a remote corner of the world.” How, Barnhardt asks, is this latter magic done? Arguing that far from merely being a backdrop in fiction, place is often itself a central character, Barnhardt explores how David Lodge, Willa Cather, Vladimir Nabokov and Tennessee Williams powerfully convey place, ultimately transforming it into a carrier of meaning.
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