Talk of the Stacks: David Rhodes

At last. After a 30-year hiatus, David Rhodes is back on the literary scene with Driftless (Milkweed Editions), a novel about a small Wisconsin town called Word. Guided to the town by onetime drifter July Montgomery, a character from Rhodes's earlier novel, Rock Island Line, the reader is introduced to an ensemble of characters that offer truth, insight, and wonder in spite of their seemingly simple, anachronistic small town. Among them are the farmer and his wife trying to blow the whistle on their corrupt milk cooperative, the doll-like invalid and her caretaker sister, and the female pastor with at least one moral dilemma. Mix in dogfights, a cougar on the prowl, and a landscape that has almost as much to say as the characters do, and we have a a packed full-narrative that nicely showcases each of Rhodes's tightly woven sentences. It was definitely worth the wait. (photo by Lewis Koch)
Thu., May 7, 7 p.m., 2009

 
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