If you like… Sufjan Stevens

Take one small Arkansas town and add one unusual woodpecker and you have the Sufjan Stevens song “The Lord God Bird.”  You also have a quirky new novel by John Corey Whaley.  Where Things Come Back is about second chances and the search for meaning.  It’s part mystery, part coming-of-age novel that explores small town dynamics with astute sarcasm.  Publisher’s Weekly named John Corey Whaley a Spring 2011 Flying Start author.  PW had this to say about the book in their starred review:

“The portentous tone and flat affect of Whaley’s writing is well-suited to the story’s religious themes and symbolism (Gabriel, the Lazarus woodpecker, the apocryphal Book of Enoch), as Whaley gradually brings the story’s many threads together in a disturbing, heartbreaking finale that retains a touch of hope.”

In addition to being inspired by Sufjan, Whaley wrote with a motto in mind: “How does one grow up in an impossible world?”

A song and a question in the hands of a promising debut author have created a captivating novel.  I recommend the book and the song.

Author: Mindy R

I'm a librarian, writer, book reviewer, etc.

2 thoughts on “If you like… Sufjan Stevens”

  1. I was introduced to Sufjan Stevens with the Illinoise album and i have been hooked ever since. This is a beautiful song and i will be sure to pick up a copy of this book. Great post!

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