In his private, contemplative novel, Enon
, author Paul Harding describes a year in the life of Charlie Crosby - grandson of George Washington Crosby, the protagonist of Harding's 2010 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Tinkers
. Set in Enon, the same fictional town as Tinkers
, Charlie is devastated after his thirteen-year-old daughter Kate is hit by a car and killed, and he's not altogether surprised when his wife leaves him shortly thereafter. (Don't worry, there are no plot spoilers here this information is given in the first paragraph of the novel.) He narrates the story reflecting back on that year, flowing in and out of the present moment, reminiscing about when Kate was alive, recalling memories of his grandparents and his childhood, imagining what life might be like if the rules of time and space could be bent:
Beyond the Book
(as in his 2010 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Tinkers
), Paul Harding constructs and describes the fictional New England town of Enon, complete with a chronicling of its multi-generational history, descriptions of its homes, woods and native plants, and stories of those buried in its cemetery.
Generally speaking, the setting of a story helps locate the culture, mindset, and mood of a book; it guides readers' emotions, allows them to form expectations for characters' behaviors, identifies whether they fit in, and places them in time and space. When writers create fictional settings whether made-up towns in familiar places, or fantastical worlds we never dreamed possible they have the ability to manipulate everything around them and...