“Arresting. Stylistically, Knight slaloms through old-fashioned noir and snarky postmodernism, and from Barthelmean set pieces to a riff on Stonewall Jackson that evokes on of Barry Hannah’s Civil War fever dreams. . . . Knight has the rare power to make a setting breathe, to invest it with a vitality that seems as authentic and intense as the pulsebeats of his characters.” Jonathan Miles, The New York Times Book Review
978-0-8021-4055-5 • $12.00 • Paperback • Jan. 2004
Michael Knight received a special PEN/Hemingway citation for his startling, finely crafted first collection, Dogfight and Other Stories, and The Wall Street Journal called Divining Rod “a potent novel from a talented new author.” Goodnight, Nobody, a brilliant collection of stories of rediscovered love, reconciliation, and peace amid the trials of everyday life, proves once again that he is “a genius of the ordinary” (Frederick Barthelme).
In each story, characters are surprised by their mettle even as they recognize their fallibility; they are convinced of the power of love, family, and trust even as they experience the danger of obsession, anger, and simple accident. In the subtle romance “Birdland,” a beautiful ornithologist from up north does her best to deny the lure of a parrot-populated Alabama village and its resident driftwood carver. In the stylistically daring masterpiece “Killing Stonewall Jackson,” a rough band of Confederate soldiers contemplate the distant, fabled Stonewall Jackson, the man who has sent them to a hellish battlefield. From a stay-at-home fatherimmobilized by a bad backwaiting helplessly for his sullen step-daughter to assist him, to a suburban husband stalking his wife’s lover with a pair of night-vision goggles, Knight’s stories are bound by an unfailing compassion for the self-destructed. Stirring tenderness in equal parts with violence, Goodnight, Nobody will amaze with its graceful sense of humor and empathy for the human spirit.