Barry Targan


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Harry Belten and the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto -- Little Parameters -- Old Vemish -- The Man Who Lived -- Leave My Mother Alone -- Natural as Can Be -- The Clay War -- Charity Begins -- Leaving -- In Excelsis Deo -- And Their Fathers Who Begat Them -- Tickets -- Elizabeth Lanier -- "... And Still the Heart Doth Sing"


This collection of fourteen stories was chosen by Professor George P. Garrett from 230 entries to receive the sixth annual $1,000 Iowa School of Letters Award for Short Fiction. Garrett, the author of four collections of stories, lives in Maine and has also published books of poetry, literature, and film. He has successfully combined the roles of author and instructor. He most recently taught at Princeton.

About the winning book, Garrett says: "In Harry Belten and the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto, we find in wonderous plenty the full range of short story voices and possibilities. There is a bright originality casting long shadows of grand tradition. Barry Targan is a gifted artist who tells his stories with great energy and with graceful care. This is a rich and various gathering, an admirable addition to the small body of genuinely distinguished fiction made in and for our time.

"The winning book has in my judgment the best claim for its consistent excellence and maximum variety of character, setting, action, and implication within a unity of personal experience and concerns. Targan is not overtly experimental, but he is strong, solid, graceful, and often very subtle." George P. Garrett

Series Title

Iowa School of Letters Award for Short Fiction

Award Date



Garrett, George P.

Publication Date



University of Iowa Press


Iowa City

Total Pages


ISBN of Print Version



Copyright © 1975 by University of Iowa Press. No part of this book may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying or recording, without permission in writing from the publisher.

Harry Belten and the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto