Synopses & Reviews
"Blas 24-year-old Pierre Hunter is the unlikely hero of Drury's fourth novel, set in the isolated region of the Midwest that gives the book its title. Newly orphaned and bartending in a small town, Pierre is just coasting through life until a near-fatal ice-skating accident introduces him to beautiful Stella Rosmarin, a mysterious girl who lives alone in an abandoned house. That too-lucky-to-be-chance rescue is the first of a string of strange incidents that fill Pierre's life as he begins an affair with Stella. When, on a cross-country hitchhiking trek, he unwittingly steals $77,000 from a dangerous character named Shane by landing a chance blow, the novel's tone shifts from absurd to surreal as Shane plots to get the money back. Meanwhile, Stella has been keeping a spooky secret that will be the undoing of everyone's plans. Though the Coen brothers-meet-David Lynch characters can seem stylized and two-dimensional, Drury (Hunts in Dreams) has a knack for entertainingly weird detail that shines throughout." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"This fine, ambling novel ends with a tug of war between the spiritual we don't altogether trust and the grind we're somehow unable to resist." New York Times
"Drury's evocative depiction of small-town life and an unpredictable plot with a touch of the supernatural will appeal to the same readers who enjoy independent films." Library Journal
"The bittersweet ending is a perfect mix of light and dark. Drury is a master at showing extraordinary things happening to ordinary people and it's always a fun ride." Kirkus Reviews
The new novel from the award-winning author of The End of Vandalism
is a wry and sophisticated heist drama. Set in the rugged region of the Midwest that gives the novel its title, The Driftless Area
is the story of Pierre Hunter, a young bartender with unfailing optimism, a fondness for coin tricks, and an uncanny capacity for finding trouble. When he falls in love, with the mysterious and isolated Stella Rosmarin, Pierre becomes the central player in a revenge drama he must unravel and bring to its shocking conclusion. Along the way he will liberate 77 thousand dollars from a murderous thief, summon the resources that have eluded him all his life, and come to question the very meaning of chance and mortality. For nothing is as it seems in The Driftless Area.
Identities shift, violent secrets lie in wait, the future can cause the past, and love becomes a mission that can take you beyond this world.
In its tender, cool irony, The Driftless Area recalls the best of neonoir, and its cast of bonafide small-town eccentrics adrift in the American Midwest make for a clever and deeply pleasurable read from one of our most beloved authors.
In its tender, cool irony, The Driftless Area recalls the best of neonoir, and its cast of bona fide small-town eccentrics adrift in the American Midwest makes for a deeply pleasurable read from a beloved author.
About the Author
Tom Drury's fiction has appeared in the New Yorker, Harper's, and Mississippi Review. He is the author of The End of Vandalism, The Black Brook, and Hunts in Dreams, a 2000 New York Times Notable Book.