Guthrie the novelistI'm adding House of Earth to my list.
There are passages in the novel where you can hear Woody Guthrie the lyricist. He plays with words, veers into poetry, wanders off into streams of consciousness. Brinkley says the book does not have a strong narrative, but Guthrie makes deft use of language to bring his characters to life.My recently revived interest in Billy Bragg also has me rethinking my early-2000s selloff of Mermaid Avenue, his collaboration with Wilco in which they created and performed music for a late-discovered trove of unpublished Guthrie lyrics. I don't remember how much I made from that sale, but I'm sure it was less than the ten bucks it will cost me to re-buy the album on iTunes. Unless I can find the CD at my local used record store.
"And he is able to really do a great job of capturing dialects and the slang expressions of a region," says Brinkley. "But it's done with a poetic flourish. You can almost speed-read the novel out loud, and when you do there is a musicality to it."
I read a biography of Guthrie recently, and he was certainly a far more complex and interesting man than his mere folk music persona (though that would be enuf for most people). I understand his autobiography is as much fiction as fact, but I am intrigued by his actual fiction effort. I may have to read this.
Posted by: Paul Lamb at Feb 9, 2013 2:55:38 AM
I saw House of Earth at the bookstore yesterday, but passed it by. I'll either check it out from the library or wait for the paperback. Probably the former, since I'm not sure I'd ever read it a second time.
Posted by: Pete at Feb 18, 2013 11:05:36 AM