Sunday, January 10, 2010


I finished Last Night in Twisted River, reading 70 pages in October, a smattering in December and the back half of the 550+ pages in a three day reading marathon this week. It is a complicated novel, and I came so close to giving up, but thank goodness I kept reading. I am in awe of this novel, now that I understand what it is, and why it unfolds the way it does. It is not an easy read, but sometimes the best novels make you work for the payoff. It took me a lot of tears to finish this story, as it broke my heart in several places. Love and loss seem to strike a serious chord with me, and this story is steeped in both, spanning three generations and decades of US history, the vanishing logging trade, the artistry of cooking, the craft of writing, the serendipity of life and the comfort of love.

It's been a long time since the remembering the words in a story could make me cry days after I read them. I can't listen to After the Gold Rush without tearing up now. I don't want to go either. And I want an angel to rescue me too. I don't want love to always be about losing it, I don't want to be afraid or sad all the time.

I will remember this Irving novel for a very long time, and I rank it among his most honest and touching novels. It will resonate for a very long time.

And yes, of course there are loads of bears.


  1. Great review. I was trying to decide if I should attempt it. Looks like that's a yes. Though maybe not right now.

  2. Hey Mel, just wanted to let you know, you won my Drawing Give-Away 2/5!

    I need to get your mailing address so I can send you your drawing!

  3. Hey Mel, here's a link to my profile where you can find my email -- I need to hear from you soon!

  4. i finished it but didn't love it as much as you. not one of my favorites of his, but i cherish his distinct totally unique voice to the point where there is not much of his that i wouldn't read. :)