Amazon.comThe crisp, melancholy stories in I, Rhoda Manning, Go Hunting with My Daddy showcase Ellen Gilchrist's many gifts: her effortless prose, her empathy and emotional depth, her irrepressible optimism. In the title story, 5-year-old Rhoda Manning (a recurring character in Gilchrist's books) is allowed to go hunting with her father armed with a BB gun. The reader waits for the gun to hit the wrong target, but it never does. The story is about a disaster-free afternoon, although in "Entropy"--told from Rhoda's point of view when she is "old and gray"--we realize disasters arrive in many guises. Other stories enter the lives of Arab terrorists, pregnant teenage girls, hairdressers, and high-school football players. Gilchrist makes each character human--even the terrorist, bitten by bugs and dreaming of Allah as he waits in a tree for his target to appear. Throughout the collection, Gilchrists voice is soothing and trustworthy, full of hypnotic cadences: "Remorse fell like rain from heaven. The golden rain trees were putting out their leaves." --Ellen Williams Book DescriptionWith all the poignancy, hilarity, and wisdom that are the hallmarks of her fiction, Ellen Gilchrist introduces a gallery of unforgettable characters-Southern women and men whose off-kilter lives are delicately revealed by the author's keen and forgiving gaze. This jubilantly acclaimed collection affirms anew why, as the Washington Post puts it, 'Ellen Gilchrist should be declared a national treasure.' - Since winning the National Book Award for Victory Over Japan in 1985, Gilchrist has established a large and devoted readership. - Rhoda Manning, one of Gilchrist's most beloved recurring characters, returns in several of these stories-as a child, as a divorced mother of three sons, and as an older woman who recalls the curse and blessing of being Big Dudley's only daughter.