book cover of Winter Loon
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Winter Loon

(2018)
A novel by

 
 
A haunting debut novel about family and sacrifice, Winter Loon reminds us of how great a burden the past can be, the toll it exacts, and the freedom that comes from letting it go.

Abandoned by his father after his mother drowns in a frozen Minnesota lake, fifteen-year-old Wes Ballot is stranded with coldhearted grandparents and holed up in his mother's old bedroom, surrounded by her remnants and memories. As the wait for his father stretches unforgivably into months, a local girl, whose own mother died a brutal death, captures his heart and imagination, giving Wes fresh air to breathe in the suffocating small town.

When buried truths come to light in the spring thaw, wounds are exposed and violence erupts, forcing Wes to embark on a search for his missing father, the truth about his mother, and a future he must claim for himself - a quest that begins back at that frozen lake.

A powerful, page-turning coming-of-age story, Winter Loon captures the resilience of a boy determined to become a worthy man by confronting family demons, clawing his way out of the darkness, and forging a life from the shambles of a broken past.

Genre: Literary Fiction

Praise for this book

"Winter Loon is a brutal, beautiful coming-of-age story in which a young man who loses everything must return to the landscape of that loss to discover what it all means. Susan Bernhard is a writer of incredible grace and power who employs weather and the natural world to plumb the icy depths of her characters’ souls for the warmth of hope, healing, and heart." - Wiley Cash

"Winter Loon is a stunner. In gorgeous, laconic prose, Susan Bernhard has brought to life an unforgettable character in Wes Ballot, whose coming-of-age is marked as much by his own resilience as it is the tragedy of his circumstances. I read this book late into the night. I bet you will, too." - Peter Geye

"This is a beauty of a page-turner, dreamy, disquieting, and uncompromising to the end. Against the tide of the wandering heart, the novel tells us, only love can offer us a place to rest—and only if we let it." - Michelle Hoover

"I lost myself in Winter Loon, its rugged heart, its dark secrets, the honesty and vulnerability of its characters. With prose both taut and lush, Susan Bernhard has created the quintessential story of adolescence: raw, tender, and completely spellbinding." - Mira T Lee

"With stunning prose and unforgettable characters, Bernhard brings us inside the life of a boy struggling to break out of the harrowing cycle of his past. This story is at once heartbreaking and inspiring—for every character determined to hold Wes down comes another with just enough ordinary grace to set him free. And the fine line between despair and redemption Wes walks will keep you holding your breath until the very end. This is a masterful debut." - Katherine Sherbrooke

"Wes Ballot is the kind of character I read books hoping to find—imperfect and lovable, haunted yet determined to forge ahead. From the moment I slid out onto the ice with him, Winter Loon had me in its grip. A gorgeous novel from a masterful new voice." - Anna Solomon

"Winter Loon seethes with the energy of an adolescent boy trying to figure out how to become a man. Wes Ballot is sixteen, weighed down by loss and secrets, but also uplifted by the joys of falling in love. All the while, Susan Bernhard’s muscular writing propels the reader through this striking debut." - Alexi Zentner


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Used availability for Susan Bernhard's Winter Loon

Hardback Editions

November 2018 : USA Hardback
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Title: Winter Loon: A Novel
Author(s): Susan Bernhard
ISBN: 1-5039-0298-6 / 978-1-5039-0298-5 (USA edition)
Publisher: Little A
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Paperback Editions

December 2018 : USA Paperback
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Title: Winter Loon: A Novel
Author(s): Susan Bernhard
ISBN: 1-5039-0297-8 / 978-1-5039-0297-8 (USA edition)
Publisher: Little A
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Audio Editions

December 2018 : Audio CD
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Title: Winter Loon
Author(s): Susan Bernhard
ISBN: 1-978631-38-3 / 978-1-978631-38-0
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


December 2018 : MP3 CD
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Title: Winter Loon
Author(s): Susan Bernhard
ISBN: 1-978631-39-1 / 978-1-978631-39-7
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


December 2018 : USA Audio edition
thumb

Title: Winter Loon: A Novel
Author(s): Susan Bernhard
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon   


December 2018 : Australia Audio edition
thumb

Title: Winter Loon: A Novel
Author(s): Susan Bernhard
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon AU   


December 2018 : Canada Audio edition
thumb

Title: Winter Loon: A Novel
Author(s): Susan Bernhard
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon CA   


December 2018 : UK Audio edition
thumb

Title: Winter Loon: A Novel
Author(s): Susan Bernhard
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Availability: Amazon UK   


Kindle Editions

December 2018 : USA, Australia, Canada, UK Kindle edition
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Title: Winter Loon: A Novel
Author(s): Susan Bernhard
Publisher: Little A
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU