Wednesday, March 6, 2013
Who Is Josh Ritter?
At our April 2nd morning book discussion we are talking about Josh Ritter's book, Bright's Passage.
It's Ritter's first novel and I picked it prior to having read it. Josh Ritter is a wonderful folk singer and songwriter from Moscow, Idaho. I have been a fan of his songs for a long time. Like a lot of great folk singers, Ritter's songs tell stories that connect with the human heart. When the book came out and I saw who wrote it, I was intrigued. When I read the plot description, I was sold.
Bright's Passage is the story of Henry Bright, a young man from West Virginia who has just returned from the battlefields of WWI. During the war he discovers an angel who has been watching over him. Now home, the angel resides in his horse giving him advice. He marries his sweetheart and they conceive a child. His wife dies in childbirth and he must raise his boy on his own, with only the help of his horse/angel. Unfortunately the angel's advice is not great. They burn down their house and flee with just the baby, horse/angel and a goat to provide milk.
Whether this is a story of a man who encountered an angel or a man who left his wits on the battlefield, the story weaves back and forth from touching to darkly humorous in a way that only a folk song might.
If you'd like to read the book and partake in out discussion, we have copies at the Readers' Service Desk at the library.