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Goodnight, Nebraska (1998)
by Tom McNeal
References to this work on external resources.
Wikipedia in English (1)
Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0375704299, Paperback)Randall Hunsacker, the protagonist of Tom McNeal's first novel, Goodnight, Nebraska, is only 17, but already he has two strikes against him: his father's death when Randall was thirteen led to a succession of "stepfathers" moving through his life and the last one, Lenny, Randall has shot. The shooting, a suicide attempt, and a stint in juvenile hall is what brings Randall to the small town of Goodnight, Nebraska--a place where he hopes to start over. He gets a job, earns a place on the high school football team and even starts dating one of the cheerleaders; things are looking up for Randall. But in a town like Goodnight--Hicksburg, to Randall, or ShitdeVille--what goes up must eventually come down. And so it is for Randall--he gets injured during a football game and his girlfriend, thinking he's dead, announces they are engaged, and before he knows it, he is married, living in a trailer, facing a life that seems to have dead-ended before it even got started.
Appearances can be deceiving, however. To Randall and his wife, Marcy, Goodnight seems like the last place on earth; he never imagined himself coming here, she never stopped dreaming about getting out. Much of McNeal's novel has to do with the gradual disintegration of Randall and Marcy's marriage; at the same time it limns a warm portrait of a middle-American town that may not be very exciting to live in, but one where people know they can count on each other in a pinch. It takes Marcy leaving--and Randall going after her--to finally teach them both that there's really no place like Goodnight.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:10:20 -0400)
A youth's inability to control his temper ruins his life. After shooting a man for sleeping with his mother, Randall Hunsacker leaves Utah for a small town in Nebraska. Things start looking up when he becomes a football hero and marries a local belle, but his temper gets the better of him, he abuses her and she leaves him. A first novel.
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