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Yellow Mesquite

Published Date: November 20, 2016

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Asher has produced a persuasive portrait of a young artist’s passage to manhood, filled with unobtrusively evocative descriptions and characterizations.   —Kirkus Review

Harley Buchanan wants out—out of his hardscrabble existence in West Texas, out of the dead-end farming life of his family, and out of the heartbreaking discovery of his high school sweetheart with another boy. He hitches out of Separation, Texas, determined to forge his way in the New York art world of the 1960s. But he can’t leave his past as easily as he left Texas. In New York, a surprising discovery ignites a bloodlust that propels him on an adrenaline-driven mission of revenge back to Texas where he finally confronts the obsession that has crippled his entire life.

“This coming-of-age story has all the author’s trademark ingredients—rich, visual descriptions and three-dimensional, nuanced characters…” —TYM

On the Story

I’ve been accused of writing a thinly disguised autobiography here. Not so. As Hadley Hemingway — Ernest’s first wife — said of him and his Nick Adams character: “They’re not the same person, but they know a lot of the same things.” I did grow up in rural West Texas, worked for Dallas Power & Light, and lived for a few months in a boarding house on Gaston Avenue. I did go to New York where I studied at the School of Visual Arts. At one point I also lived in a little shotgun room up above the old Belmore Cafeteria on 28th, and I was a layout artist for the JCPenny catalogs. But I’ve never known a Darlene, Sherylynne, Frankie, Mavis, or a Wendell Whitehead.

I hope you enjoy this story. Thank you for dropping by.




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