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Amity and Prosperity : one family and the fracturing of America
2018
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Author Notes
<p> Eliza Griswold is the author of The Tenth Parallel: Dispatches from the Fault Line Between Christianity and Islam , which won the 2011 J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize. Her translations of Afghan women's folk poems, I Am the Beggar of the World , was awarded the 2015 PEN Award for Poetry in Translation. She has held fellowships from the New America Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and Harvard University, and in 2010<br> the American Academy in Rome awarded her the Rome Prize for her poems. Currently a Distinguished Writer in Residence at New York University, she lives in New York with her husband and son.</p>
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Trade Reviews

  New York Times Review

AMITY AND PROSPERITY: One Family and the Fracturing of America, by Eliza Griswold. (Picador, $18.) This exhaustively researched account traces the devastating effects of fracking on a Pennsylvania town: illnesses, toxic waste, a collapsing middle class. The book, which won a Pulitzer Prize this year, captures the layers of government malfeasance and neglect that allowed a corporation's interests to win out in the region. THE GREAT BELIEVERS, by Rebecca Makkai. (Penguin, $16.) Makkai's powerful novel chronicles the AIDS epidemic, from its outbreak up to the present day, through the lives of a group of friends in Chicago, most of them gay men. Along the way, the story of a woman searching for her daughter in Paris in 2015 is woven in. The book was one of the Book Review's 10 best of 2018. FRENEMIES: The Epic Disruption of the Ad Business (and Everything Else), by Ken Auletta. (Penguin, $17.) The media reporter and best-selling author describes the new landscape for advertising and marketing, both competing with and dependent on Silicon Valley. Though America's fascination with advertising has dimmed, Auletta does point to successful innovations, even as the industry stares down existential threats. OHIO, by Stephen Markley. (Simon & Schuster, $16.99.) In this timely debut novel, which touches on everything from the Iraq war to opiate addiction to the alt-right, a group of former classmates return to their Rust Belt hometown, where an astonishing number of secrets and betrayals are revealed. As our reviewer, Dan Chaon, put it, "The real core of this earnestly ambitious debut lies not in its sweeping statements but in its smaller moments, in its respectful and bighearted renderings of damaged and thwarted lives." THE ELECTRIC WOMAN: A Memoir in DeathDefying Acts, by Tessa Fontaine. (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $16.) After her mother suffered a terrible stroke, leaving her severely incapacitated, the author ran off to join the circus, where she ate fire, handled a boa constrictor and even swallowed swords. Fontaine braids these experiences, of losing her mother and performing in a sideshow, into an elegant narrative. THE MARS ROOM, by Rachel Kushner. (Scribner, $17.) Set in a women's correctional facility, this propulsive novel reveals an imagination that is Dickensian in its range and its reformist zeal. As our reviewer, Charles McGrath, wrote, "Kushner's novel is so powerful and realistic you come away convinced that... even for those who get out, prison is still a life sentence."

  Publishers Weekly Review

Journalist Griswold (The Tenth Parallel) comprehensively examines the circumstances surrounding the lawsuit that Stacey Haney, a nurse and single mother, filed against energy company Range Resources. The book opens with an account of the shale gas boom of the mid-2000s, when fracking (hydraulic fracturing) brought unexpected windfalls to financially distressed towns on the border of Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia, including Haney's hometown, Amity, and the neighboring town of Prosperity in rural Pennsylvania. Residents welcomed the money from mineral leases, using it to pay for needed roofs and fences. Haney did, too, until her son, Hartley, was hospitalized for fatigue and tested positive for high levels of arsenic in his blood, which they believed was due to runoff from the fracking on a nearby property. When Haney and her daughter, Paige, got tested, they too were diagnosed with arsenic poisoning. The community reacted to the news and Haney's subsequent lawsuit with suspicion and animosity, accusing Haney of "acting out of hysteria." Griswold combines Haney's perspective with those of her attorneys, John Smith and Kendra Smith, during the years-long legal saga, which was settled for an undisclosed amount in early 2018. With empathy and diligence, Griswold brings attention to the emotional and financial tolls Haney and her family endured in this revealing portrait of rural America in dire straits. (June) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Summary
<p> Winner of the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction <br> <br> In Amity and Prosperity , the prizewinning poet and journalist Eliza Griswold tells the story of the energy boom's impact on a small town at the edge of Appalachia and one woman's transformation from a struggling single parent to an unlikely activist. </p> <p>Stacey Haney is a local nurse working hard to raise two kids and keep up her small farm when the fracking boom comes to her hometown of Amity, Pennsylvania. Intrigued by reports of lucrative natural gas leases in her neighbors' mailboxes, she strikes a deal with a Texas-based energy company. Soon trucks begin rumbling past her small farm, a fenced-off drill site rises on an adjacent hilltop, and domestic animals and pets start to die. When mysterious sicknesses begin to afflict her children, she appeals to the company for help. Its representatives insist that nothing is wrong.</p> <p>Alarmed by her children's illnesses, Haney joins with neighbors and a committed husband-and-wife legal team to investigate what's really in the water and air. Against local opposition, Haney and her allies doggedly pursue their case in court and begin to expose the damage that's being done to the land her family has lived on for centuries. Soon a community that has long been suspicious of outsiders faces wrenching new questions about who is responsible for their fate, and for redressingit: The faceless corporations that are poisoning the land? The environmentalists who fail to see their economic distress? A federal government that is mandated to protect but fails on the job? Drawing on seven years of immersive reporting, Griswold reveals what happens when an imperiled town faces a crisis of values, and a family wagers everything on an improbable quest for justice.</p>
Table of Contents
Mapsp. viii
A Notep. 3
Prologuep. 7
Part IHoopies
1Fair 2010p. 11
2When The Boom Beganp. 18
3The Mess Next Doorp. 29
4Arsenipp. 37
5Airbornep. 46
6Hoopiesp. 55
7"One Head & One Heart, & Live in True Friendship & Amity as One People"p. 62
8Doubtersp. 68
9Hang 'Em Highp. 78
10Blood and Urinep. 85
11Airportp. 97
Part IIBurden of Proof
12"Mr. and Mrs. Atticus Pinch"p. 105
13Mutual Distrustp. 123
14Buzzp. 131
15Missing Pagesp. 136
16Rainbow Waterp. 142
17"Dear Mr. President"p. 148
18Insurgentsp. 155
19Burden of Proofp. 159
20Policing the Statep. 165
21What Money Doesp. 174
22Ruin Is The Destination Toward Which All Men Rushp. 193
23Remote Peoplep. 200
24Ignorant Motherfuckersp. 208
25A Special Agentp. 219
26Full Metal Jacketp. 225
Part IIIThe Right to Clean Air and Pure Water
27The Right to Clean Air and Pure Waterp. 235
28Dreamsp. 243
29Closing Down The Pondsp. 248
30Chasing Ghostsp. 259
31"The Junkyard Plaintiff"p. 266
32Divap. 270
33Fair 2016p. 278
Epilogue: White Hatsp. 289
Postscriptp. 301
A Note On Sourcesp. 307
Notesp. 309
Acknowledgmentsp. 317
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