All I Have in This World: Book summary and reviews of All I Have in This World by Michael Parker

All I Have in This World

by Michael Parker

All I Have in This World by Michael Parker X
All I Have in This World by Michael Parker
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  • Published in USA  Mar 2014
    320 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

Two strangers meet over the hood of a used car in Texas: Marcus, who is fleeing both his financial and personal failures; and Maria, who after years of dodging her mistakes has returned to her hometown to make amends. One looking forward, the other looking back, they face off over the car they both want and think they need: a low-slung sky-blue 1984 Buick Electra.

The car, too, has seen its share of failures. Each dent and ripped seam represents a pivotal moment in the lives of others: from the boy who assembled it at an Indiana plant to all its ensuing owners - a God-fearing man who sells it when he sees a sexy girl sprawled across its hood, a doctor who can't dissociate it from his son's fate, and a rancher's wife who'd much rather live without it for all the history it carries.

After knowing each other for less than an hour, Marcus and Maria decide to buy the Buick together. As this surprising novel follows the rocky paths of the Electra and its owners - both past and present - these two strangers form an unexpected and ultimately resilient alliance.

All I Have in This World is a different kind of love story about the power of friendship and the ways we must learn to forgive ourselves if we are ever to move on.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"The growing friendship between the two makes for the most engaging aspect of this story of the Texas desert." - Publishers Weekly

"Parker deftly captures his characters' uncertainties and hesitations as they struggle to move away from regret and toward the absolution they so desire." - Booklist

"Smart writing undone by an overly engineered conceit." - Kirkus

"This is a very funny, very moving novel about being lost and then found, about that rarest gift - shared sensibility - and about being saved... I love this book." - Antonya Nelson, author of Bound

"Parker again extends his geographical and emotional ranges here in this layered and nuanced story of heartbroken, debt-ridden and atonement-seeking creatures much like many of us. So get in and drive on." - Mark Richard, author of House of Prayer No. 2

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Author Information

Michael Parker

Michael Parker is the author of five novels - Hello Down There, Towns Without Rivers, Virginia Lovers, If You Want Me To Stay, The Watery Part of the World and two collections of stories, The Geographical Cure and Don't Make Me Stop Now. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in various journals including Five Points, the Georgia Review, The Idaho Review, the Washington Post, the New York Times Magazine, Oxford American, Shenandoah, The Black Warrior Review, Trail Runner and Runner's World. He has received fellowships in fiction from the North Carolina Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as the Hobson Award for Arts and Letters, and the North Carolina Award for Literature. His work has been anthologized in the Pushcart, New Stories from the South and O. Henry Prize Stories anthologies. A graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill and the University of Virginia, he is a Professor in the MFA Writing Program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

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