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The Suicide Run

Five Tales of the Marine Corps

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Paperback published by Random House Trade Paperbacks (Random House Publishing Group)

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About This Book
Before writing his memoir of madness, Darkness Visible, William Styron was best known for his ambitious works of fiction–including The Confessions of Nat Turner and Sophie’s Choice. Styron also created personal but no less powerful tales based on his real-life experiences as a U.S. Marine. The Suicide Run collects five of these meticulously rendered narratives. One of them–“Elobey, Annobón, and Corisco”–is published here for the first time.

In “Blankenship,” written in 1953, Styron draws on his stint as a guard at a stateside military prison at the end of World War II. “Marriott, the Marine” and “The Suicide Run”–which Styron composed in the early 1970s as part of an intended novel that he set aside to write Sophie’s Choice–depict the surreal experience of being conscripted a second time, after World War II, to serve in the Korean War. “My Father’s House” captures the isolation and frustration of a soldier trying to become a civilian again. In “Elobey, Annobón, and Corisco,” written late in Styron’s life, a soldier attempts to exorcise the dread of an approaching battle by daydreaming about far-off islands, visited vicariously through his childhood stamp collection.

Perhaps the last volume from one of literature’s greatest voices, The Suicide Run brings to life the drama, inhumanity, absurdity, and heroism that forever changed the men who served in the Marine Corps.
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Before writing his memoir of madness, Darkness Visible, William Styron was best known for his ambitious works of fiction–including The Confessions of Nat Turner and Sophie’s Choice. Styron also created personal but no less powerful tales based on his real-life experiences as a U.S. Marine. The Suicide Run collects five of these meticulously rendered narratives. One of them–“Elobey, Annobón, and Corisco”–is published here for the first time.

In “Blankenship,” written in 1953, Styron draws on his stint as a guard at a stateside military prison at the end of World War II. “Marriott, the Marine” and “The Suicide Run”–which Styron composed in the early 1970s as part of an intended novel that he set aside to write Sophie’s Choice–depict the surreal experience of being conscripted a second time, after World War II, to serve in the Korean War. “My Father’s House” captures the isolation and frustration of a soldier trying to become a civilian again. In “Elobey, Annobón, and Corisco,” written late in Styron’s life, a soldier attempts to exorcise the dread of an approaching battle by daydreaming about far-off islands, visited vicariously through his childhood stamp collection.

Perhaps the last volume from one of literature’s greatest voices, The Suicide Run brings to life the drama, inhumanity, absurdity, and heroism that forever changed the men who served in the Marine Corps.
Product Details
Paperback (208 pages)
Published: September 14, 2010
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Imprint: Random House Trade Paperbacks
ISBN: 9780812980240
Other books byWilliam Styron
  • Lie Down in Darkness

    Lie Down in Darkness
      William Styron’s stunning debut: a classic portrait of one Southern family’s tragic spiral into destruction First published to wide critical acclaim in 1951, Lie Down in Darkness centers on the Loftis family—Milton and Helen and their daughters, Peyton and Maudie. The story, told through a series of flashbacks on the day of Peyton’s funeral, is a powerful depiction of a family doomed by its failure to forget and its inability to love. Written in masterful prose, Styron’s debut novel offers unflinching insight into the ineradicable bonds of place and family. The story of Milton, Helen, and their children reveals much about life’s losses and disappointments. Lie Down in Darkness, poignant and compelling, is aclassic of modern American literature. This ebook features a new illustrated biography of William Styron, including original letters, rare photos, and never-before-seen documents from the Styron family and the Duke University Archives.  

    Sophie's Choice

    Sophie's Choice
    Three stories are told: a young Southerner wants to become a writer; a turbulent love-hate affair between a brilliant Jew and a beautiful Polish woman; and of an awful wound in that woman's past--one that impels both Sophie and Nathan toward destruction.

    The Confessions of Nat Turner

    The Confessions of Nat Turner
    In the late summer of 1831, in a remote section of southeastern Virginia, there took place the only effective, sustained revolt in the annals of American Negro slavery... The revolt was led by a remarkable Negro preacher named Nat Turner, an educated slave who felt himself divinely ordained to annihilate all the white people in the region. The Confessions of Nat Turner is narrated by Nat himself as he lingers in jail through the cold autumnal days before his execution. The compelling story ranges over the whole of Nat's Life, reaching its inevitable and shattering climax that bloody day in August. The Confessions of Nat Turner is not only a masterpiece of storytelling; is also reveals in unforgettable human terms the agonizing essence of Negro slavery. Through the mind of a slave, Willie Styron has re-created a catastrophic event, and dramatized the intermingled miseries, frustrations--and hopes--which caused this extraordinary black man to rise up out of the early mists of our history and strike down those who held his people in bondage. From the Hardcover edition.

    Set This House on Fire

    Set This House on Fire
    The narrator, Peter Leverett, a government employee returning to the U.S., stops in the Italian village of Sambuco to see his old schoolmate Mason Flagg. The next morning Flagg is found dead at the base of a cliff, a peasant girl has been beaten to death, & Cass Kinsolving, a drunken American painter, is gone. The case is written off as a murder & a suicide, but Leverett doesn't believe it & searches for the truth

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