book cover of A Country Called Home
Added by 1 member

A Country Called Home

A novel by

With her acclaimed memoir In the Wilderness Kim Barnes brought us to the great forests of Idaho, where geography and isolation shape love and family. Now, in her luminous new novel, she returns to this territory, offering a powerful tale of hope and idealism, faith and madness.

It is 1960 when Thomas Deracotte and his pregnant wife, Helen, abandon a guaranteed future in upper-crust Connecticut and take off for a utopian adventure in the Idaho wilderness. They buy a farm sight unseen and find the buildings collapsed, the fields in ruins. But they have a tent, a river full of fish, and acres overgrown with edible berries and dandelion greens. Helen learns to make coffee over a fire as they set about rebuilding the house. Though Thomas discovers he can't wield a hammer or an ax, there is a local boy, Manny--a sweet soul of eighteen without a family of his own--who agrees to manage the fields in exchange for room and board. Their optimism and desire carry them through the early days.

But the sudden, frightening birth of Thomas and Helen's daughter, Elise, changes something deep inside their marriage. And then, in the aftermath of a tragic accident to which only Manny bears witness, suspicion, anger, and regret come to haunt this shattered family. It is a legacy Elise will inherit and struggle with, until she ultimately finds a hope of her own.

In this extraordinary novel, Kim Barnes reminds us of what it means to be young and in love, to what lengths people will go to escape loneliness, and the redemption found in family.

Genre: Literary Fiction

Praise for this book

"A seductive book of love and obsession, Kim Barnes's new novel, A Country Called Home, explores the consequences of a man's single-minded vision and the family made to walk the knife's edge between control and freedom. It is an elegant work, a lyrical feast so richly imagined it feels genuinely lived. Some books are easily put down, but the best of them, like A Country Called Home, won't let go of you." - Claire Davis

"A Country Called Home is a weave of human longings, accurate in its rendering of the ways they accumulate, always human, confounding and often heartbreaking but ultimately heartening. Give it a while, watch it come to life, and you'll find yourself rationing the pages, wishing it was longer. Kim Barnes is to be envied for her ability to open doors on the secret life of all our times." - William Kittredge

"The country through which Kim Barnes's characters travel in this novel of spiritual and emotional searching is a landscape eroded by grief and yearning and ultimately shame for our dissolution from our gods. I finished reading A Country Called Home some time ago and still cannot quite move on from the experience." - Mark Spragg

"Kim Barnes's new novel is an exquisitely complex story, by turns pointed and poignant, about everything that matters: family, loyalty, religion, memory, love." - Brady Udall

Visitors also looked at these books

Used availability for Kim Barnes's A Country Called Home

About Fantastic Fiction       Information for Authors