Synopses & Reviews
In one hand, Jesse Breedlove holds a bottle of Cuervo Gold — or what's left of it — in the other, the shovel with which he has just unearthed the bones of a small girl buried in the cellar of a Catholic church in Omaha, Nebraska. So begins Breedlove's odyssey across the literal and mythical landscapes of America, bearing the finely articulated body he has uncovered, the bones that would neither rest nor, in their restless eloquence, let him remain silent. Through the heart of the United States this mover of bones encounters people who live on the margins, geographically and emotionally, and who find that his presence and his plight summon their voices. Rumors surface and reports multiply as the lonely, the addicted, the isolated, the damned, the pure of heart, and the holy sane speak. From the dark and distant edges of society, they bear witness — sometimes directly, sometimes obliquely — to what the mover of bones and his burden mean.
Defiler, redeemer, sinner, or saint — Breedlove is the stuff myths are made of, and The Mover of Bones, the first of a planned trilogy of novels by the remarkably gifted Robert Vivian, evokes a collective dream of the heartland.
"Robert Vivian's prose is lyrical and harrowing — harrowing in the Biblical sense. It is as if the killing fields were being irrigated with light. The Mover of Bones is disturbing, a chorus of the damned, but the music can be strangely sweet." Sven Birkerts, author of An Artificial Wilderness: Essays on 20th-Century Literature
"There are many disturbing images in The Mover of Bones. Vivian doesn't shy away from death, or ugliness, or cruelty. But there are many beautiful images as well, and then there are the inexplicable mysteries. It seems to me this book contains every gorgeous, awe-inspiring, horrific thing life has to offer."—Katrina Denza Katrina Denza
"Beautifully, muscularly written."—poet Jane Hirshfield, author of Given Sugar, Given Salt and After katdenza.blogspot.com/
“Vivians ability to fully inhabit his characters, to render th Kirkus Reviews
“Nebraska native Vivian uses the spare, vivid language of a playwright. . . . [Readers] who seek haunting prose and staccato insights into human nature from all levels of the socioeconomic spectrum will follow Breedloves journey willingly.”—Booklist
"Whether tough or gentle, all of the voices in The Mover of Bones are written with shining, masterful prose and a well-observed vulnerability that will make the reader see that we carry each of these characters, in some form, within all of us."—Sophfronia Scott, Gently Read Literature katdenza.blogspot.com/
An alcoholic janitor digs up the bones of a murdered girl in a church basement in South Omaha and leaves with them on a desperate journey through the heart of the U. S.
About the Author
Robert Vivian is a professor of English and creative writing at Alma College in Michigan and a core faculty member in the low-residency MFA program at the Vermont College of Fine Arts. He is the author of, most recently, The Least Cricket of Evening, and of the Tall Grass Trilogy, which includes Lamb Bright Saviors and Another Burning Kingdom, all available from the University of Nebraska Press.