Alison's Automotive Repair Manual by Brad Barkley
A Novel

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A widow in her mid-thirties, Alison has been mourning for two years. Now living in small town West Virginia with her sister Sarah and brother-in-law Bill, Alison is unable to move on with her life. Finally, she promises Sarah and Bill that she will start over—once she restores the abandoned, nearly ruined 1976 Corvette she found rusting in the garage and immediately loved. Unfortunately, Alison doesn’t know the first thing about cars, and the fact that the townspeople (with the exception of a cute demolition man) find a woman messing with automotive parts bewildering doesn’t help. With beautiful frankness and surprising hilarity, Brad Barkley tells of a gutsy woman’s attempts to overcome loss, and fit into a close-knit community, in a triumphant look at grief, love, loss, and moving on.

About Brad Barkley

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Brad Barkley, a native of North Carolina, is the author of the novel, Money, Love, which was a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection and a Book Sense 76 choice. Money, Love was named one of the best books of 2000 by the Washington Post and Library Journal. Barkley was named as one of the "Newcomers of 2002: Breakthrough Writers You Need to Know" by Book magazine. He is also the author of a story collection, Circle View. His short fiction has appeared in more than two dozen magazines, including the Southern Review, the Georgia Review, Oxford American, the Greensboro Review, Glimmer Train, Book magazine, and the Virginia Quarterly Review, which has twice awarded him the Emily Balch Prize for Best Fiction. His work was anthologized in New Stories from the South: The Year's Best, 2002 and again in 2003. A story collection, Another Perfect Catastrophe, is his next book, also published by St. Martin's Press. He has won four Individual Artist Awards from the Maryland State Arts Council, and a Creative Writing Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. Brad Barkley teaches creative writing at Frostburg State University. He lives in western Maryland with his wife, Mary, and two children.
Published May 13, 2013 by Dzanc Books. 288 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Humor & Entertainment. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Alison's Automotive Repair Manual

Kirkus Reviews

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An unfortunate branch of the subplot follows the draining of the lake near the town, which everyone thinks will uncover the car that, legend has it, Gordon drove across the ice years ago and that fell through, almost taking him with it.

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Publishers Weekly

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Barkley spends a bit too much time on Max's father, a compulsive liar whose habit is beginning to interfere with Max's relationship with Alison.

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Book Reporter

Brad Barkley's new novel ALISON'S AUTOMOTIVE REPAIR MANUAL is the type of fable about southern living that belongs right beside Harper Lee's Pulitzer Prize- winning masterpiece TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD.

Jan 20 2011 | Read Full Review of Alison's Automotive Repair Ma...

It has been two years since the unexpected passing of Alison's husband, and Sarah, with whom Alison stays, hints that it's time to get past him.

Jul 02 2003 | Read Full Review of Alison's Automotive Repair Ma...

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