Clay's Quilt by Silas House

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On a bone-chilling New Year's Day, when all the mountain roads are slick with ice, Clay's mother, Anneth, insists on leaving her husband. She packs her things, and with three-year-old Clay in tow, they inch their way toward her hometown along the treacherous mountain roads.

That journey ends in the death of Clay's mother. It's a day that comes to haunt her only son, who's left without a family and a history. This is the story of how Clay Sizemore, a coal miner in love with his town but unsure of his place within it, finds a family to call his own.

And it's the story of the people who become part of the life he shapes: Aunt Easter, always filled with a sense of foreboding and bound to her faith above all; Uncle Paul, quietly producing quilt after quilt; Dreama, beautiful and flighty; Evangeline, the untameable daughter of a famous gospel singer; and Alma, the fiddler whose song wends its way into Clay's heart. Together, they all help Clay to fashion a quilt of a life from what treasured pieces are around him.

Authentic and moving, Clay's Quilt is both the story of a young man's journey and of Appalachian people struggling to hold on to their heritage.


About Silas House

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Silas House is the nationally best-selling author of Eli the Good as well as the award-winning novels Clay's Quilt, A Parchment of Leaves, and The Coal Tattoo. He is an associate professor at Berea College and lives in eastern Kentucky. Neela Vaswani is the award-winning author of You Have Given Me a Country and Where the Long Grass Bends. Her work has received an American Book Award, an O. Henry Prize, and a ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Award. She teaches at Spalding University's MFA in writing program and is the founder of the Storylines Project with the New York Public Library. Neela Vaswani lives in New York City.
Published April 1, 2001 by Algonquin Books. 305 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense. Fiction

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A Kentucky author’s plaintive debut tells the story of coal miner Clay Sizemore’s efforts to understand and possess his own history, shattered when he was a three-year-old present at his own mother’s murder.

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Typically, I do my own book reviews of manuscripts by Kentucky Authors, but a good friend of mine – Mitch Holbrook – has written such a beautiful tour through the first book by Silas House, “Clay’s Quilt.” With his permission I give you a Kentucky Author review of Clay’s Quilt.

Jul 26 2011 | Read Full Review of Clay's Quilt

Book Reporter

Silas House is a writer with a sense of place.

Feb 26 2002 | Read Full Review of Clay's Quilt

Star News Online

At the same time, though, he inhabits a parallel world whose roots go back centuries: a world where pregnant women can't touch a man's wounds for fear of "marking" the baby, and churchgoing ladies have regular visitations from the spirits of the dead, where brush-arbor hymns and Barbara Allen ar...

Aug 05 2001 | Read Full Review of Clay's Quilt

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