The Prince of Frogtown
On Sale: May 6, 2008
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In this final volume of the beloved American saga that
began with All Over but the Shoutin’ and continued
with Ava’s Man, Rick Bragg closes his circle of
family stories with an unforgettable tale about fathers and
sons inspired by his own relationship with his ten-year-old
He learns, right from the start, that a man
who chases a woman with a child is like a dog who chases a
car and wins. He discovers that he is unsuited to
fatherhood, unsuited to fathering this boy in particular, a
boy who does not know how to throw a punch and doesn’t need
to; a boy accustomed to love and affection rather than
violence and neglect; in short, a boy wholly unlike the
child Rick once was, and who longs for a relationship with
Rick that Rick hasn’t the first inkling of how to embark on.
With the weight of this new boy tugging at his clothes, Rick
sets out to understand his father, his son, and
The Prince of Frogtown documents a
mesmerizing journey back in time to the lush Alabama
landscape of Rick’s youth, to Jacksonville’s
one-hundred-year-old mill, the town’s blight and salvation;
and to a troubled, charismatic hustler coming of age in its
shadow, Rick’s father, a man bound to bring harm even to
those he truly loves. And the book documents the unexpected
corollary to it, the marvelous journey of Rick’s later life:
a journey into fatherhood, and toward a child for whom he
comes to feel a devotion that staggers him. With candor,
insight, tremendous humor, and the remarkable gift for
descriptive storytelling on which he made his name, Rick
Bragg delivers a brilliant and moving rumination on the
lives of boys and men, a poignant reflection on what it
means to be a father and a son.
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