Friday, June 25, 2010

Book: Prodigal Summer

Recommended by a friend. Kingsolver, author of the popular Poisonwood Bible, writes about life in a small Appalachian farming community. A farmers widow left with a family she doesn't feel welcome in, an elderly man who preferred the "good ol' days", and a Forest Ranger who lives by herself up in the mountains taking care of the mountain. These stories all interact with the environment and how farming, agriculture, natural resources, and modern "progress" can give some surprising results.
Kingsolver points out some of the debates in agriculture about using "modern" techniques like pesticides, genetic crops, and how these can create more problems whereas some of the old techniques really are more successful and productive.
Defiantly a great book to read during the summer, (or spring if you need motivation for summer gardening).
The characters are impeccably described and are deep, flawed, and very human. Their grief is real, joy authentic, and frustration visible. Great characters help to make great books.
The land is just as alive in this book as some of the characters, and I enjoyed it more than the Poisonwood Bible.