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A Long and Happy Life

A Long and Happy Life

A Novel

FROM ITS DAZZLING OPENING PAGE, WHICH ANNOUNCED THE appearance of a stylist of the first rank, to its moving close, this brief novel has charmed and captivated millions of readers since its original publication almost fifty years ago. The troubled love story of pretty, headstrong Rosacoke Mustian and the motorcycle-riding, stoic Wesley Beavers, A Long and Happy Life beautifully evokes a rural North Carolina now long gone.

Ecstatically reviewed and winner of the William Faulkner Award for a notable first novel when it was published in 1962, A Long and Happy Life launched the career of Reynolds Price, a writer considered to be "one of our greatest novelists" (HARPER LEE).
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  • Scribner | 
  • 224 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781439109342 | 
  • May 2009
List Price $19.99

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Chapter 1

Just with his body and from inside like a snake, leaning that black motorcycle side to side, cutting in and out of the slow line of cars to get there first, staring due-north through goggles towards Mount Moriah and switching coon tails in everybody's face was Wesley Beavers, and laid against his back like sleep, spraddle-legged on the sheepskin seat behind him was Rosacoke Mustian who was maybe his girl and who had given up looking into the wind and trying to nod at every sad car in the line, and when he even speeded up and passed the truck (lent for the afternoon by Mr. Isaac Alston and driven by Sammy his man, hauling one pine... see more

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About the Author

Reynolds Price
Photo Credit: Sara Barrett

Reynolds Price

Reynolds Price (1933-2011) was born in Macon, North Carolina. Educated at Duke University and, as a Rhodes Scholar, at Merton College, Oxford University, he taught at Duke beginning in 1958 and was the James B. Duke Professor of English at the time of his death. His first short stories, and many later ones, are published in his Collected Stories. A Long and Happy Life was published in 1962 and won the William Faulkner Award for a best first novel. Kate Vaiden was published in 1986 and won the National Book Critics Circle Award. The Good Priest's Son in 2005 was his fourteenth novel. Among his thirty-seven volumes are further collections of fiction, poetry, plays, essays, and translations. Price is a member of both the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and his work has been translated into seventeen languages.

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