West of Here

West of Here - Jonathan Evison For a novel about conquering the frontier, West of Here is refreshingly free of frontier wisdom. In fact it's also wonderfully free of platitudes of any kind, which is incredibly rare in a novel of it's scope.

As someone familiar with the area in which the story takes place, I was impressed by how well Evison captured the landscape, and also how he captured the general mood of contemporary small town Washington state.

The stories in the book are entertaining, compelling, and compassionate. Aside from a few drunken injuns, there are no cardboard caricatures here, each personality is very much it's own, and I found myself empathizing with just about all of them.

It wasn't suspensful or stressful, but that the story kept me turning pages.