A Hand Reached Down to Guide Me by David Gates; Pacific by Tom Drury - review by James Kidd

James Kidd

Back on Track

A Hand Reached Down to Guide Me


Serpent’s Tail 314pp £12.99



Old Street 194pp £12

It’s hard enough to keep up with contemporary fiction without wading through the forgotten masterpieces that prevented you from reading it in the first place. Richard Yates’s Revolutionary Road and, more recently, John Williams’s Stoner have enjoyed notable second winds thanks to savvy marketing and the endorsement of well-known writers. 

Lately, publishers have been inspired to excavate the even more recent past for buried treasure. David Gates and Tom Drury are, like Yates and Williams, white, male and American. But unlike them, they are living, working writers who might stand to benefit from critical resuscitation. Both published extraordinary debuts, Jernigan

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