Tom Harry has a streak of frost in his black pompadour and a venerable bar called The Medicine Lodge, the chief watering hole and last refuge of the town of Gros Ventre, in northern Montana. Tom also has a son named Rusty, an "accident between the sheets" whose mother deserted them both years ago.The pair make an odd kind of family, with the bar their true home, but they manage just fine.
Until the summer of 1960, that is, when Rusty turns twelve. Change arrives with gale force, in the person of Proxy, a taxi dancer Tom knew back when, and her beatnik daughter, Francine. Is Francine, as Proxy claims, the unsuspected legacy of her and Tom's past? Without a doubt she is an unsettling gust of the future, upending every certainty in Rusty's life and generating a mist of passion and pretense that seems to obscure everyone's vision but his own. As Rusty struggles to decipher the oddities of adult behavior and the mysteries build toward a reckoning, Ivan Doig wonderfully captures how the world becomes bigger and the past becomes more complex in the last moments of childhood.
Click to the right or left of the sample to turn the page.
(If no book jacket appears in a few seconds, then we don't have an excerpt of this book or your browser is unable to display it)
"Starred Review. Doig gives us a poignant saga of a boy becoming a man alongside a town and a bygone way of life inching into the modern era." - Publishers Weekly
"Starred Review. Essential reading for anyone who cares about western literature." - Booklist
"Starred Review. Doig expertly spins out these various narrative threads with his usual gift for bringing history alive in the odysseys of marvelously thorny characters. Possibly the best novel yet by one of America's premier storytellers." - Kirkus Reviews
The information about The Bartender's Tale shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.
Ivan Doig was born in Montana and grew up along the Rocky Mountain Front, the dramatic landscape that inspired much of his writing. A former ranch hand, newspaperman, and magazine editor, Doig was the author of 13 novels, most recently The Bartender's Tale, Sweet Thunder and Last Bus to Wisdom (Aug 2015), and four works of nonfiction, including his classic first book, the memoir This House of Sky. He was a National Book Award finalist and received the Wallace Stegner Award and a Distinguished Achievement Award from the Western Literature Association, among numerous other honors.
His major theme is family life in the past, mixing personal memory and regional history. The first three Montana novelsEnglish Creek, Dancing at the Rascal Fair, and Ride with Me, Mariah Montanaform the...
Ivan Doig: iven doig (first syllable of last name rhymes with toy)
Members review books pre-publication. Read their opinions in First Impressions
Win 5 books, each week in July!
Solve this clue:
and be entered to win..
Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.
Your guide toexceptional books
BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.