Photo of the Snake River by kitseeborg used under a Creative Commons license.
Ron Carlson, Five Skies (Viking, 2007).
Correspondent Virginia writes:
Set in Idaho’s Rocky Mountains, this third novel by Ron Carlson deals with three men undertaking an improbable summerlong construction project: a ramp for an Evel Knievelesque canyon leap. Each man brings his personal desolation to this harsh and beautiful landscape, finding redemption and connection in the dignity of backbreaking labor. Idaho’s natural wonders come alive on the page with a literary sparseness that matches the landscape.
Susan Salter reviewed it in the LA Times in May 2007. Tom Barbash reviewed it for the New York Times in August 2007, and Allison Glock reviewed it for Esquire. The New Yorker briefly noted it, as is oft their wont. Hear it read by the author at NPR, or listen to this story (with links, too) at Minnesota Public Radio. Ron Carlson applies the Page 69 Test to his own book here. More reviews from Scott Leibs, David Abrams (January), Porch Dog, StarStar, T.K. Dalton (High Country News), Dave, and Dan. Seth Marko says it’s the best book he read in 2007.