3 April, 2009

Peter Rock: Off the Grid

I wasn’t able to write anything the last two days because I’ve been occupied with the business of countering misinformation on the political front. I won’t go into that in any great detail here, for now, since the day will soon be here when I must let that life seep through into this one. For now, I wanted to share a thought about a book I came across just now, by Peter Rock, that intrigued me. The title of the novel is My Abandonment, which already conjurs up the kind of intensely personal story that I love to read, and you can watch Peter talk about the inspiration for his book, below:

There’s a review of it at the Plain Dealer site. I stumbled upon Peter and his book while looking at possible locations for reading and going through the “best of the best” venues recommended to me by my West Coast writer-friends, so I would be remiss if I did not mention that I found this book on the website for Green Apple Books in San Francisco.

The story, about a father and daughter who live in Forest Park in Portland, OR, revolves around a Vietnam Vet suffering from PTSD and his 13 year old daughter, whom he raises to a superior brilliance while living in a dwelling they carve into the hills between the eight miles of trails in the park until the girl is discovered, unfortunately, by a jogger and life as they know it comes to an end. The way in which Peter continues to follow their imagined-true-life through his fiction is both interesting and recognizable to anybody who loves making up stories be they short, the length of novellas, novels or even door-stoppers.

In these times of over-involvement in each others every living moment, and where the kind of misinformation of which I spoke has the ability to turn peaceable people into blood-thirsty demons, the bittersweet tale of this parent and child who decided to purchase only what they need and tend to themselves in companionable solitude, feels like the correct antidote.

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The Books:

The Books:

On Sal Mal Lane

In the tradition of In the Time of the Butterflies and The Kite Runner, a tender, evocative novel about the years leading up to the Sri Lankan civil war.

A Disobedient Girl

A Disobedient Girl is a compelling map of womanhood, its desires and loyalties, set against the backdrop of beautiful, politically turbulent, Sri Lanka.