The few hundred souls who inhabit Words, Wisconsin, are an extraordinary cast of characters. The middle-aged couple who zealously guards their farm from a scheming milk cooperative. The lifelong invalid, crippled by conflicting emotions about her sister. A cantankerous retiree, haunted by childhood memories after discovering a cougar in his haymow. The former drifter who forever alters the ties that bind a community. In his first novel in 30 years, David Rhodes offers a vivid and unforgettable look at life in small-town America.
“[Rhodes’s] finest work yet . . . Driftless is the best work of fiction to come out of the Midwest in many years.”—Chicago Tribune
“Set in a rural Wisconsin town, the book presents a series of portraits that resemble Edgar Lee Masters’s ‘Spoon River Anthology’ in their vividness and in the cumulative picture they create of village life.”—The New Yorker
“Encompassing and incisive, comedic and profound, Driftless is a radiant novel of community and courage.”—Booklist (starred review)
“A welcome antidote to overheated urban fiction . . . A quiet novel of depth and simplicity.”—Kirkus Reviews
“It takes a while for all these stories to kick in, but once they do, Rhodes shows he still knows how to keep readers riveted. Add a blizzard, a marauding cougar and some rabble-rousing militiamen, and the result is a novel that is as affecting as it is pleasantly overstuffed.”—Publishers Weekly