So Far Back

A Novel

Pam Durban

Picador

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Sixty-year-old Louisa Hilliard--the last descendent of one of Charleston's oldest and most prominent families -- is caring for her ailing mother. An upright, unmarried spinster, Louisa has spent her life looking after others. In the aftermath of a hurricane that turns her life upside down, she finds a battered diary kept by one of her ancestors. The journal recounts the story of Diana, a 19th-century slave who worked for the Hilliards, but sought to improve her life and her means, and was severely punished. Diana's fate is gradually revealed, even as Louisa discovers objects in her house missing, moved, dented, and seemingly handled by an unappeasable presence. In some small way trying to set right age-old wrongs, Louisa discovers how her own life is entangled in her family's haunted history. So Far Back is a nuanced and resonant portrait of two families sharing an enduring past and an uneasy present.

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Book Excerpts

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Walking Tour of the Historic District Charleston, South Carolina Site No. 1This is the Fireproof Building, current home to the South Carolina Historical Society. Designed in the Classical Revival style by the young architect and native Charlestonian Robert Mills, and completed in 1827, it is a fine example of the late-eighteenth-century and early-nineteenth-century ideals of balance, order, and harmony. Notice how every element is repeated and complemented by another—gracefully curved steps on the left and right climb to a porch topped by double doors of rosewood—and in this way, symmetry

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Reviews

Praise for So Far Back

" Superb...Pam Durban emerges as a forceful novelist." -- New York Times Book Review

" A knockout of a first novel." -- Atlanta Journal-Constitution

"Strong, evacotive, often wry...pleasurable, as well as affecting reading." -- Washington Post Book World

"Exhilarating." -- Boston Sunday Globe

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About the Author

Pam Durban

Pam Durban is the author of The Laughing Place and All Set About With Fever Trees. She has received numerous awards including a Whiting Writer's Award. She teaches at Georgia State University, where she is one of the founding editors of Five Points Magazine.

Pam Durban

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Available Formats and Book Details

So Far Back
A Novel
Pam Durban

Award

Lillian Smith Book Awards - Winner

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Picador
October 2000
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9780312271688
ISBN10: 0312271689
256 pages
$7.99

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
Picador
October 2001
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312283476
ISBN10: 0312283474
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 272 pages
$18.00
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Picador

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