Sunday, May 23, 2010

Summer Reading

Meet Gavin Gresham, a self-styled cynic, who owns a sheep farm in the northern hills of Vermont. Gavin, the hero of R.L. Berenbaum’s very funny novel, Gresham’s Law: A Fable of Early 21st Century America, is also somewhat of a recluse. He’ll drop by the local diner for a chat and a snack, and he’s good friends with an older, neighbor couple. Other than that, Gavin’s happy to live and let live, and to be left alone. But when an exceedingly obnoxious letter appears in the local paper stating that anyone who doesn’t agree with the author’s religious position will “burn,” Gavin’s had enough. He writes a long rejoinder, beginning with the observation that “There is very little wrong in this world that couldn’t be made right by the absolute abolition of religion.” What follows, as all hell breaks loose in Gavin’s formerly peaceful little corner of the Green Mountain State, is an often-hilarious, very suspenseful, exceedingly intelligent and unsentimentally touching modern-day retelling of the Book of Job, with a redeeming love story included. R.L. Berenbaum, who “lives and writes in a turret in northern Vermont, assisted by a cat, Evil Donald,” is a first-rate storyteller with an engaging voice. Of Gresham’s Law, Reeve Lindbergh says, “In this intelligent, ironic, and thoughtfully crafted novel, Berenbaum offers a host of lively characters whose opinions are as stimulating as the northern climate.” I was rooting for Gavin from the start. As a matter of fact, in more ways than one, he reminded me quite a bit of myself. (Gresham’s Law is available in northern New England bookstores, and from Railroad Street Press in St. Johnsbury, VT -, or


Mike said...

Mr. Mosher -

Thanks for the recommendation. The book sounds like just the sort of thing I love to read and I've got a copy on order.

That character sounds a lot like ME, too!

Mike Disbrow

GodTalkVermont said...

Dear Howard,
Thanks so much for sharing the books you have been savoring and tidbits from them! You have whetted my appetite for several of them!

Thanks too for remembering our dear Friend and mentor, Jim Hayford. It does my heart good to think back to his quiet, gentle-powerful influence on our lives. Hope to see you soon on your book tour! Marsh