I’ve caught a bug! The Kent Haruf bug. His writing is Hemingway-esque: economic, tight, direct and clear. His characterisation is sympathetic, full of brightness and hope.
Just as Our Souls at Night, the third book in a series, investigated the (nowadays) seeming impossibility of two old folk sleeping innocently together just for company, so Plainsong, my latest discovery and the first in the series, explores the unlikely arrangement of a pregnant young girl going to live with two old bachelor farmers who raise her and protect her. The story is heart-warming, in spite of the obvious difficulties caused by her pregnancy and the old men’s inexperience. But it is their love for her and their determination to bring her up in the best way they can, that captures the heart. But not all is easy-going. There remains in the background the recurring issue of the errant young father, and other side stories of love and romance. Plainsong is the first of three novels in a series and won strong acclaim when first published.
I’m about to start the second in the series, Eventide. Can’t wait to get stuck in!
Plainsong is published by Picador and is available on Amazon.