Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Music of the Swamp by Lewis Nordan

Quirky and colorful, with an endearing central character -- a boy whose eyes see beyond surface of the small delta town in which he lives, and dips into the magic and mystery  of the imagination. Descriptions of the everyday that will knock your socks off. Stories that will have you smiling one moment, before piercing your heart with poignancy. This was the kind of book that captures the mystery of the swamp's edge and transports you there (minus the miasma and mosquitoes). It gives a glimpse of a recently bygone era through the eyes of a ordinary, sensitive, imaginative child.

I grew up around storytellers, many within my family, so it was a gentle homecoming to fall into the rhythms of the tales Lewis Nordan tells in Music of the Swamp. His central character, Sugar Mecklin, tells stories of his life, which overlap, change, grow, and explode, like that remarkable Pinto, which may or may not have blown up in two or three of tales. There is tragedy; there is hope.  There is so much beautiful writing, that my heart wept, while my eyes smiled. As much as I loved the novel, I think my favorite part of the book was  The Invention of Sugar: An Essay about Life in Fiction -- and Vice Versa, written by the author. The Delta is a magical place, filled with life, death, hope, and thankfully, storytellers such as Lewis Nordan.

Many thanks to LibraryThing and the publisher for sending a copy of this book my way.

Tags: idn-t-want-to-put-it-down, early-review-librarything, magic, read, set-in-the-south, southern-author, will-look-for-more-by-this-author

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