Read this book now. Because soon, The Orchardist (Harper) will be so overwhelmed with reviews and praise and sales records and movie deals that it will be impossible to read it without the hype interfering with the pure enjoyment of taking in an undiscovered text. More importantly, read it now because it is an incredible story told in a beautiful, unique voice. The characters that debut author (and Minneapolis resident) Amanda Coplin has created fill and spill off the page. At the center is William Talmadge, an orchardist in the Pacific Northwest whose sister disappeared when he was a young child. Runaway sisters Della and Jane, and eventually Jane's daughter Angelene, pierce Talmadge's solitude when they begin living on his land. Along with midwife Caroline Middey and Clee, Talmadge's horse wrangler friend, the group forms a makeshift family in which the past seems to forever be disrupting the present. Coplin manages to write in a way that is simultaneously slow and yet fast-paced, epic and yet simple, quiet and yet full of emotional depth and range. Do not miss this one. Also 7 p.m. Friday at Micawber's Bookstore (2238 Carter Ave., St. Paul; 651.646.5506).
Thu., Sept. 13, 7 p.m., 2012