Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Baker Towers by Jennifer Haigh

Bakerton is a community of company houses and church festivals, of union squabbles and firemen's parades. Its neighborhoods include Little Italy, Swedetown, and Polish Hill. For its tight-knit citizens -- and the five children of the Novak family -- the 1940s will be a decade of excitement, tragedy, and stunning change. Baker Towers is a family saga and a love story, a hymn to a time and place long gone, to America's industrial past, and to the men and women we now call the Greatest Generation. It is a feat of imagination from an extraordinary voice in American fiction, a writer of enormous power and skill. ~~ synopsis from Goodreads

My thoughts about Baker Towers ~~

Jennifer Haigh is such a wonderful story teller. She is able to weave the lives of all these people who live in the small community of Bakerton, set in the 1940s. It was amazing to be taken back to that time period and live life along with all of them. Times were hard, living in a mining town but the people persevered and got through it.

I read one person's comment about Baker Towers who said she really didn't care for the book because there wasn't much of a plot. Life is the plot in this book. This is a story centered around the characters and Jennifer does an amazing job of character development. There are so many people in this story and the reader gets to know all of them and gets to understand how their lives are all connected.

This would be a wonderful book for a book group to read and discuss. There would be so much to talk about. I loved Baker Towers and I love Jennifer's stories. I will definitely be reading more of her books!

On Thursday, I will be posting my thoughts about Jennifer's newest book, News from Heaven, so you will want to come back for that.

And .... I am going to be holding a giveaway for one lucky person to win both Baker Towers and News from Heaven from me. Since the two books are both about Bakerton, I want them to go together to the same person. My thoughts about News from Heaven will be posted on the 14th, so come back then to see what I have to say about it and to enter the giveaway.

About the author

Jennifer Haigh is an American novelist and short story writer. Her most recent novel, FAITH (HarperCollins, 2010), tells the story of a beloved Boston priest accused of a molesting a child. Her previous novels include the New York Times bestsellers THE CONDITION and BAKER TOWERS, winner of the 2006 PEN/L. L. Winship Award for outstanding book by a New England author. Her critically acclaimed debut novel MRS. KIMBLE won the 2004 PEN/Hemingway Award for first fiction.

Jennifer Haigh's next book, a collection of short stories entitled NEWS FROM HEAVEN, will be published in February 2013. In it she returns to the landscape of Bakerton, the western Pennsylvania coal town that is the setting for BAKER TOWERS. Characters from that novel -- indomitable Joyce Novak, her eccentric sister Dorothy and mysterious younger brother Sandy -- will return for encore performances.

Haigh was raised in Pennsylvania and earned a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Iowa Writers' Workshop in 2002. Her short stories have been published widely, in The Atlantic, Granta, Ploughshares and many other places, including the forthcoming Best American Short Stories 2012. She lives in the Boston area.

Connect with Jennifer

1 comment:

  1. "Life is the plot in this book." I think that's beautiful.


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