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Short Story Collection Review    


Lives of the Artists: Stories
by Dennis Vannatta
Livingston Press, 2003
Trade paper, $13.95 (134 pages)
ISBN: 1-931982-11-2



Dennis Vannatta, who has written two earlier short story collections This Time, This Place and Prayers for the Dead -- has taken art as the central motif his third collection of short stories, Lives of the Artist. 

Vannatta uses time past and present to contrast visual arts with storytelling. In the author's imagination, the first cave artist and storyteller must amuse their captors or risk assassination. A contemporary traveling salesman finds himself obsessing over an art historian and winds up on a panel discussing the Mona Lisa after she has handed him a nametag with the promise of meeting him at the panel. 

The author, who currently teaches English at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, first published these stories in literary magazines, including: Raystown Review, The Quarterly, Pushcart XV, Portland Review, and Arkansas Literary Forum.

Pam Kingsbury
Southern Scribe Reviews

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