The Driftless Area
DescriptionThe 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 $77,000 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 bona fide small-town eccentrics adrift in the American Midwest make for a clever and deeply pleasurable read from one of our most beloved authors.
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About the Author
Tom Drury is the author of several novels, including The End of Vandalism, Hunts in Dreams, The Driftless Area, and The Black Brook. His fiction has appeared in the New Yorker, Harper's, and the Mississippi Review, and he has been named one of Granta's Best Young American Novelists.
"Smart, funny dialogue...hypnotic...uniquely appealing."
"Equal parts heist caper, ghost story, and romance...Spare and sly." -- Amy Virshup
"Coen brothers-meet-David Lynch characters...entertainingly weird detail that shines throughout."
"Drury is an enormously skilled...storyteller. He delights in lulling the reader with meandering yet entertaining dialogue." -- Robert Draper
"ÝDrury has¨ a deadpan-comic ear for small-town life and an eye for the singular moral codes of the characters who inhabit them." -- Frank Bentayou
"With a spare and direct prose style, ÝThe Driftless Area¨ is full of wonderfully ironic characters and cool moments of small wisdom." -- Gilbert Cruz
"Readers will finish the book only with satisfaction, meditation and amazement at a dreamlike novel by one of America's finest, most imaginative authors." -- Yiyun Li
"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."
"A near masterpiece...Drury imbues the landscape with an impersonal, threatening and anclent chill that's a bit reminiscent of Twin Peaks, complete with sudden appearances of the supernatural....Hypnotic and memorable." -- Thomas Haley
"A Drury story, like many by Alice Munro, is apt to jump its banks as it flows, wonderfully free-form, with devilment in its details....There are twists worthy of Henry James's The Turn of the Screw, and vengeance, but not for the obvious reasons."
"The latest way station in ÝDrury's¨ fascinating artistic evolution is The Driftless Area, a fast, mean, beautiful little book about a man and a woman who become linked through a cycle of revenge....A book of hard, tangible surfaces, yet it is absolutely drenched in mystery."
"With deceptively simple prose, Drury is able to evoke characters and scenes in just a few brushstrokes...A genre-bending literary challenge...'Midwestern neonoir' Ýwith¨...elements of the Brothers Grimm as well as the Brothers Coen...ÝDrury has¨ come up with a region entirely his own." -- J. D. Dolan
"In Tom Drury's splendid new novel the writing is like fresh lake water--transparent, revealing all depths, and so truly original. It has left me thoughtful, so caught up in the story, wishing it would go on and on. Even the wicked people in Drury's tale are plainly seen and written about with understanding--that is, real charity." -- Paula Fox
"ÝA¨ moody and mysterious tale. Over the course of four original novels, Drury has forged an entrancing form of mldwestern paranormal noir. Deadpan wit, cosmic melancholy, characters both ethereal and down and dirty, predicaments a Beckett character would accept as inevitable, and a porous divide between the living and the dead add up to a delectably unnerving outlaw fairy tale." -- Donna Seaman