September 15, 2011
Recently Read: Bright's Passage, by Josh Ritter
Josh Ritter is an amazing songwriter, and I'm a big fan of his music; so when I heard he had written a novel, I knew I had to check it out. Many of his songs contain stories themselves, and I was interested to see how his writing would come across in a book.
At first, I will admit that I found some of the writing a little...clunky. But then he hit his stride, and this quirky little story pulled me in. My husband was lured as well - he happened to pick up the book while we were on vacation and ended up continuing to pull it away from me to read more.
Bright's Passage is about a man named Henry Bright, who has recently returned from World War I, and the angel who has followed him home. The chapters alternate between his time in the war and present day, which finds him back in West Virginia and alone with his newborn son. He is being hunted by his wife's father, a creepy old man who calls himself 'The Colonel', and idiot brothers.
It is an entertaining read throughout, but I will admit that the ending is rather unsatisfying. I agree with some of the reviews I've read, indicating that there are many obvious flaws with the book, reflecting the fact that this is the author's first attempt at a novel. That said, I'd still recommend it, and I am looking forward to Josh's second attempt.
Here's a link to the NY Times Book Review.