Synopses & Reviews
A sweeping novel about a single house in the woods of New England, told through the lives of those who inhabit it across the centuries — "a time-spanning, genre-blurring work of storytelling magic" (The Washington Post) from the Pulitzer Prize finalist and author of The Piano Tuner and The Winter Soldier.
"With the expansiveness and immersive feeling of two-time Booker Prize nominee David Mitchell's fiction (Cloud Atlas), the wicked creepiness of Edgar Allan Poe, and Mason's bone-deep knowledge of and appreciation for the natural world that's on par with that of Thoreau, North Woods fires on all cylinders." San Francisco Chronicle
New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice
When two young lovers abscond from a Puritan colony, little do they know that their humble cabin in the woods will become the home of an extraordinary succession of human and nonhuman characters alike. An English soldier, destined for glory, abandons the battlefields of the New World to devote himself to growing apples. A pair of spinster twins navigate war and famine, envy and desire. A crime reporter unearths an ancient mass grave — only to discover that the earth refuse to give up their secrets. A lovelorn painter, a sinister con man, a stalking panther, a lusty beetle: As the inhabitants confront the wonder and mystery around them, they begin to realize that the dark, raucous, beautiful past is very much alive.
This magisterial and highly inventive novel from Pulitzer Prize finalist Daniel Mason brims with love and madness, humor and hope. Following the cycles of history, nature, and even language, North Woods shows the myriad, magical ways in which we're connected to our environment, to history, and to one another. It is not just an unforgettable novel about secrets and destinies, but a way of looking at the world that asks the timeless question: How do we live on, even after we're gone?
"Each arc is beautifully, heartbreakingly conveyed, stitching together subtle connections across time. This astonishes." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
"Readers, too, will find themselves in an entrancing fictional realm where the human, natural, and supernatural mingle, all captured in the author's effortlessly virtuosic prose…Like the house at its center, a book that is multitudinous and magical." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"Mason depicts all of [the] stories with sympathy, sensitivity, and affectionate humor. Epic in scope and ambitious in style, this book succeeds on all counts. Highly recommended." Library Journal (Starred Review)
About the Author
Daniel Mason is the author of The Piano Tuner, A Far Country, The Winter Soldier, and A Registry of My Passage Upon the Earth, which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His work has been translated into twenty-eight languages, adapted for opera and the stage, and awarded, among others, a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Joyce Carol Oates Prize, a California Book Award, an O. Henry Prize, and a Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. He is an assistant professor in the Stanford University department of psychiatry.