Nice things reviewers said:

“Dixieland was never so dishy nor dysfunctional as in Barnhardt’s ribald send-up of the conflagration that ensues when Old South tradition confronts New South tackiness… Barnhardt’s satirical scorching of southern culture comes in second only to Sherman’s fiery march.” — BOOKLIST

Lookaway is in part about the slow-motion collision of Old and New South that’s been rumbling for a few decades now. But it’s mostly about family, always more entertaining and enraging than politics. Scandals erupt and old family secrets are revealed as the Johnston clan skids into the future. Some revelations are painful indeed, and you come to care deeply for these characters – especially the tough old matriarch Jerene, trying desperately to preserve some semblance of dignity as family fortunes take a turn. I noticed a curious phenomenon toward the end of Lookaway, Lookaway. I started reading more slowly, lingering over each passage, rationing out the last pages. I didn’t want it to end. Lookaway is both dishy and literary, but like all good novels, there’s a nourishing quality as well.”  –Glenn McDonald, CHARLOTTE OBSERVER

“Barnhardt’s fourth novel is a revelation: witty, savage and bighearted all at once, it is the Southern novel for the 21st century.” — KIRKUS (Starred Review)

The NEW YORK TIMES (click on the scan):

NYTBR review


Lookaway, Lookaway is a wild romp through the South, and therefore the history of our nation, written by an absolute ringmaster of fiction. Wilton Barnhardt is back baby, and he’s coming at you with everything he’s got. Enjoy! Enjoy! Enjoy!” — Alice Sebold (The Lovely Bones)

“Move over, Tom Wolfe! There’s a new guy in town with the ultimate—-no, make that penultimate—-take on the New South. Better take a powder, pour a big gin, and put your feet up before you start reading. Writing with brilliance and brio, Wilton Barnhardt has penned a hilarious satire which often has surprising depth and hits way too close to the truth.” —Lee Smith (Oral History, Guests on Earth)

“Wilton Barnhardt has written the big Southern novel I’ve been wanting to read all my life. I can’t think of a book that better expresses the complexity of exactly where our Southern culture is right now. His insights into his characters – both male and female – are rich and genuinely hilarious, expressed with a dangerous level of humor and pain. Lookaway, Lookaway is entirely remarkable. I finished reading it and started again on page one to see how he did it. (I still don’t know.)” — Mark Childress (Crazy in Alabama, Georgia Bottoms)

“Wilton Barnhardt’s Lookaway, Lookaway is our best 21st Century update so far of Anthony Trollope’s The Way We Live Now. This literary romp is a new South vision with a ferocious vengeance, a heady stew of debutantes, Internet dating, Confederate War reenactors, real estate scandals, and GARDEN & GUN mores. Wicked family secrets are stirred in with antebellum lore and the Obama-era politics of race, gender and sex, all showing us, truly and newly, a Global Dixie.” — Randall Kenan (The Fire This Time, A Visitation of Spirits),