One of America's most prestigious writers, Russell Banks is a literary icon whose works probe the deepest recesses of American life. His profound and resonant stories of the lives of ordinary Americans have appeared regularly in anthologies and collections, including The Best American Short Stories. Reminiscent of Don DeLillo and Raymond Carver, this collection of twelve short works showcases a master at the peak of his intuitive powers. As he did in his haunting, classic works The Sweet Hereafter, Rule of the Bone and Lost Memory of Skin, Banks explores provocative themes with pathos and sharp insight. Each of the stories in this powerful collection demonstrates the range of his narrative virtuosity and a startlingly panoramic vision of humanity which recalls the moral sweep of John Steinbeck's writing. A Permanent Member of the Family is a stunning addition to the canon of a writer 'whose great works resonate with such heart and soul' (New York Times).