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4th November
written by Steph

Indiespensible # 22

With October being as busy as it was, my reading slipped off quite a bit, and I have to admit I haven't yet regained my reading mojo. I've only got one book waiting to be reviewed in my queue, and in the past week I've picked up and started several books only to put them down because they just weren't doing it for me right now. But maybe this new installment of Powell's Indiespensible will be the panacea to my reading slump? Included in Volume 22:
  • Signed, first edition copy of Benjamin Percy's The Wilding
  • Powell's interview with Percy on commemorative collector cards (which make me feel like I'm a newscaster getting ready to read for broadcast)
  • A Powell's insulated metal canteen, which is perfectly Steph-sized!
I admit that prior to Powell's announcing this month's pick, I had never heard of The Wilding; anyone out there already read it? Normally I don't offer up official synopses or press material, but I figure this book is sufficiently "beneath the radar" that a bit of background might be helpful. From Publisher's Weekly:
Percy's excellent debut novel (after the collection Refresh, Refresh) digs into the ambiguous American attitude toward nature as it oscillates between Thoreau's romantic appreciation and sheer gothic horror. The plot concerns a hunting trip taken by Justin Caves and his sixth-grade son, Graham, with Justin's bullying father, Paul, a passionate outdoorsman in failing health who's determined to spend one last weekend in the Echo Canyon before real estate developer Bobby Fremont turns the sublime pocket of wilderness into a golfing resort. Justin, a high school English teacher, has hit an almost terminally rough patch in his marriage to Karen, who, while the boys camp, contemplates an affair with Bobby, though she may have bigger problems with wounded Iraq war vet Brian, a case study in creepy stalker. The men, meanwhile, are being tracked by a beast and must contend with a vengeful roughneck roaming the woods. A taut plot and cast of deeply flawed characters--Justin is a masterwork of pitiable wretchedness--will keep readers rapt as peril descends and split-second decisions come to have lifelong repercussions. It's as close as you can get to a contemporary Deliverance.
Intriguing, non? It certainly seems seasonally appropriate, so I'll probably be digging into it soon! I will let all of you know how it goes!


  1. 11/04/2010

    Lovely photo Madame! I read this all in one go, last night. And then I woke up at 2 am sure that the noise I heard was a bear outside my window. 🙂 I too find the cards a bit weird but the interviews always make me want to read the book.

  2. 11/04/2010

    I love seeing what you get inside these packages, and every time you post these updates, I get closer and closer to joining the club myself! It sounds like The Wilding is a very unusual read, and I really like those, so I will be looking forward to hearing what you think of it. I also really like your canteen, and can think of a lot of great uses for it. I hope you enjoy all your new goodies!

  3. 11/04/2010

    I hadn’t heard of The Wilding before, but yes, definitely intriguing!

  4. 11/04/2010

    I’ll be interested to see what you think of The Wilding – I thought Deliverance was the most scary movie EVER!!!

  5. 11/05/2010

    @ Trisha: Sounds like just the thing to pull me out of my reading slump… Since we live on the second floor, hopefully all bear fears will be mitigated! 😀
    @ zibilee: I’m really looking forward to reading The Wilding soon, so I’ll let you know if Powell’s made a good pick! And I’m glad you’re enjoying the loot pictures!
    @ Nymeth: It sounds so spooky! Perfect for this time of year!
    @ rhapsody: I haven’t seen Deliverance so that allusion didn’t mean much to me, but all signs point to a scary read… I hope it is!

  6. 11/07/2010

    That synopsis sounds intriguing. It’s been getting a lot of attention in the UK press. Love that beautiful red and black packaging, too. Colours after my own heart!

  7. 11/10/2010

    @ Nicola: Yes, the colours are wonderful… definitely very evocative! I’m so surprised this book has been making the news rounds because until Powell’s announced it, I’d never heard of it at all, which is pretty rare for me!

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