By Brian Kimberling
A birdwatcher's guide to the human heart - an unconventional coming of age story from an unforgettable new voice that will appeal to fans of David Vann and Annie Proulx.
With wry humour and real freshness, SNAPPER charts the disastrous love affair between career birdwatcher Nathan Lochmueller and the place that made him.
Set in a brilliantly observed rural Indiana, 'the bastard son of the Midwest', SNAPPER is a book about birdwatching, a woman who won't stay true, and a pick-up truck that won't start. Here turtles eat alligators for breakfast, Klansmen skulk in the undergrowth, and truckers drop into the diner of a town named Santa Claus to ensure that no child's Christmas letter goes unanswered, while Nathan grapples with the eternal question: should I stay, or should I go? Kimberling's vision of small-town life is as characterful as Garrison Keillor's Lake Wobegon, but bristling with the tensions of race, class, poverty and prejudice, it makes for a bracing read.
Brian Kimberling is a native of Indiana and a graduate of Indiana University. In the mid-nineties he was a research assistant for a major study of Indiana songbirds, an experience central to his first book, SNAPPER. Since then he has lived and worked in the Czech Republic, Mexico, Turkey and England. He began writing SNAPPER on the Bath Spa Creative Writing MA in 2009, and was awarded the first annual Janklow & Nesbit Prize for the best manuscript to emerge from the course. He lives in Bath with his wife and son.
- Other details
- Publication date:
23 Apr 2013
- Page count:
Superb... always engaging, sometimes beautiful and often funny' — Telegraph
'[The] coolest of cool...a quirky and memorable debut' — Guardian
Captivating... Snapper could do for birdwatchers what Annie Proulx did for small-town newspaper reporters and cowboys — Independent on Sunday
Funny and adroit fiction — Margaret Atwood, via Twitter
'Lyrical, comic and packed with piercing descriptions... at the same time as being down-to-earth and humorous, Snapper is suffused with a certain melancholy, and it is Kimberling's expert balancing of all these elements that allows the novel's insights - into who we are and where we come from - to hit home' — Observer
Delightfully entertaining — Esquire
Brilliant... an absolute joy of a book. I predict big things for it — Scott Pack, Me and My Big Mouth
Brimming with unusual characters and hilarious idisoyncracies... Kimberling shows much promise — Shortlist
Fascinating and captivating — Washington Post
Funny and absorbing' — Booklist