Seed is the story of Bill Starr’s final days. Childless but with a lifetime’s worth of possessions and a nearly infinite web of extended family, Bill endeavors to empty his house completely before he dies by summoning distant relatives to claim their inheritance. Many of his letters go unanswered, but those who do show up find that their reward is often much less valuable than they might expect.
What they get instead are Bill’s memories, made vivid by each item from the past, memories that are more exotic and curious than the lives currently lived by his young relatives.
Accompanied by his housekeeper, Ramona, and his young gardener, Jonathan, Bill is a somewhat cantankerous, wildly intelligent, and often forgetful man who recalls and speaks to his deceased wife, often imagining that she’s never died. His unwillingness to recognize what has happened to her and to give away his only possession of any value, a 1937 Pierce-Arrow automobile that they bought together, becomes the measure of his grief and of his love in this profoundly funny novel that faces death and love sincerely.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Stanley Crawford is a graduate of the University of Chicago and the Sorbonne. He is the author of several novels, among them Petroleum Man, Log of the S.S. The Mrs Unguentine, Travel Notes, and Gascoyne, as well as the memoirs A Garlic Testament: Seasons on a Small New Mexico Farm and Mayordomo: Chronicle of an Acequia in Northern New Mexico. He is coproprietor with his wife, Rose Mary Crawford, of El Bosque Garlic Farm in Dixon, New Mexico.
PRAISE FOR SEED
“Seed is an anti-quest narrative: our hero sleeps, aggrieved, in his chair, dreaming of shedding possessions. He is ferocious, uncertain, disheveled, a spirit kindred to Unguentine, a mess, and easy to love. Another brilliant and hilarious novel by a great American writer.”
–Noy Holland, author of Swim for the Little One First and What Begins with Bird
“Seed is is one of the finest novels I have ever read.”
–Michael Ventura, author of Night Time Losing Time and The Zoo Where You’re Fed to God
“Stanley Crawford has given us this masterwork, a book so funny, so generous, and so perceptive that it feels like an unforgettable evening spent with your family’s weirdest and wisest scion. Seed shows us that the twilight we must face–both individually and as an empire–can be more illuminating than our most verdant noon.”
–Ken Baumann, author of Solip and Say, Cut, Map
5.5 X 8.5, 192 pp
ISBN: 978-1-57366-183-6 Paper
ISBN: 978-1-57366-853-8 Ebook