• Publisher: Harper Perennial; Original edition (May 28, 2013)
Celebrated retired professor Samuel Zelinsky reluctantly leaves New Hampshire after his wife’s death to visit a farm in the Kentucky hills where he lived as a child. The son of sharecroppers, Samuel has long since left that life behind—yet now he must reconnect with long-buried memories to fulfill a childhood promise to a friend.
In 1945, Sam and his best friend, Fred Mulligan, visit the Blue Hole, a legendary pool on the Kentucky River where the hill people believe an evil force lurks. Along with a couple of neighbor boys, they discover the body of a dog, surrounded by twisted human footprints—and a cave that offers further evidence that something terrible has transpired. Fearing they’ll be punished for their trespasses, the boys initiate a series of cover-ups and lies that eventually leads to a community disaster.
When the Zelinskys move, Fred and Samuel promise each other that if either calls, the other will come to his aid. But Samuel’s failure to keep his promise has lasting consequences he could never have predicted. Now, decades later, he confronts his failures and attempts to redeem himself, finally achieving peace through his late return to Canaan land.
Oh my goodness - what a jewel of a book this is! Author Sam Halpern takes his readers on a journey that follows his main character, Samuel Zelinsky, as he returns to his childhood home in the hills of Kentucky and as he remembers the good and bad times he experienced there.
For a debut novel, "A Far Piece To Canaan" is an absolute masterpiece. The characters are just that, characters that are full-dimensional and fascinating, the storyline is fast moving and smoothly moves from the past to the present and back again, and the mystery that is intertwined throughout the story is spine-tingling.
There is quite a bit of dialect spoken by the characters, which adds to the overall authenticity of the story. At first, it takes a bit to get used to it, but once you get involved in the story, it rolls of the reader's "tongue" with ease. Hun-ney - ya'll will love it!
This novel will take it's well-deserved place in my top books for 2013! I highly recommend it!
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Sam’s Tour StopsCheck out what other bloggers are saying about "A Far Piece to Canaan":
Tuesday, May 28th: Cerebral Girl in a Redneck World
Wednesday, May 29th: A Patchwork of Books
Thursday, May 30th: SusieBookworm
Monday, June 3rd: bookchickdi
Tuesday, June 4th: Sharon’s Garden of Book Reviews
Wednesday, June 5th: A Bookworm’s World
Thursday, June 6th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
Tuesday, June 11th: BookNAround
Monday, June 17th: Tiffany’s Bookshelf
Tuesday, June 18th: As I turn the pages
My thanks to TLC Book Tours for including me on this blog tour and to Harper Collins for providing the review copy of the book. I was not compensated for my opinion.