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Synopses & Reviews
"Engaging and unusual...Goats is a hard-edged, clear-eyed, coming-of-age novel shot through with unexpected flashes of tenderness." New York Times Book Review
"Surprisingly winning...Goats has a mellow, sidelong charm and an intelligence that sneaks up on you." Washington Post Book World
"Rather wonderful first novel...Poirier clearly delights in the surreal sights of Tucson." Times (London)
"Simple and economical, Poirier's prose astonishes the reader with bursts of strange beauty." Seattle Weekly
"Poirier serves up an offbeat coming-of-age story while avoiding most of the cliches common to the form. An impressive debut...a refreshingly original cast of characters." Baltimore City Paper
"Illuminating...humorous and pithy...a charmer of a first novel." Denver Post
Fourteen-year-old Ellis is getting ready to leave the Southwest for a boarding school in the East. This means leaving behind his mother and the only real father he has ever known, Goat Man. Goat Man has done more for Ellis than giving him his first bong hit. He has maintained a home on Ellis's mom's property rent-free since Ellis was a child, taking care of small tasks and raising a herd of goats — all the while teaching Ellis the meaning of stability, caretaking, and commitment.
At boarding school, making the grade while staying (mostly) high, Ellis finds Goat Man's influence thrown into stark relief. And when a skeptical Ellis returns for spring break, he and Goat Man are forced to reevaluate a relationship they thought was the only thing that would never change in their crazy lives.
Hilarious and intimate, Goats challenges the conventional idea of family and home while drawing us deeper into Ellis's journey into manhood. Mark Jude Poirier has an uncanny gift for chronicling the human condition and bringing to life a varied yet dispassionate landscape.
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