Friday, July 17, 2015
No Place to Fall, by Jaye Robin Brown
A complicated and dark depiction of rural North Carolina and a sharp contrast to the book I just reviewed before this (Heart of a Shepherd). This too rings of authenticity, but with a more pessimistic worldview. There's a biting honesty to how Brown depicts the human condition, as no one is immune from the petty longings and wrath that ultimately destroy their dreams. It may be dispiriting to never experience a truly virtuous character, but it feels more authentic and ultimately uplifting to have done so. Brown gets a particular loud shout out for creating characters that initially appear to be caricatures but ultimately are fleshed out into complex people.