BookBrowse Reviews The Green Age of Asher Witherow by M. Allen Cunningham

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Green Age of Asher Witherow

by M. Allen Cunningham

The Green Age of Asher Witherow by M. Allen Cunningham
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Oct 2004, 288 pages
    Paperback:
    Oct 2005, 288 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
BookBrowse Review Team

Buy This Book

About this Book

Reviews

BookBrowse:


'Too compelling to put down.' Historical Fiction/1st Novel

Comment: Rich in historical detail, this gorgeously written debut novel tells the story of a little scrap of humanity coming of age in the boom and bust years of a California Welsh coal mining in the 1860-70s (close to Mount Diablo in the San Francisco Bay Area). He's only seven years old but Asher Witherow, the only child of Welsh parents, is already putting in a 12-hour days at the pit head alongside his father and the majority of the town, then at night he attends a few hours of school with the other pit-boys.  Life is harsh but there are a few glimmers of hope, for Asher at least, if not the mining community as a whole. 

This is one of those books where the whole is so much greater than the sum of the parts that I fear to give you details from the plot, so all I can do is encourage you to read the excerpt for yourself and decide if this might be a good choice for you.  

The reviews for The Green Age of Asher Witherow have been generally very positive, and it was also the #1 Booksense recommendation for October (Booksense is the e-commerce element of the American Booksellers Association).  For example Booklist says it is an 'accomplished first novel', The San Jose Mercury News describes it as 'dark and foreboding, vivid in character, grounded in the geography of Northern California ... an impressive and satisfying debut novel', and Publishers Weekly says 'Cunningham does a superb job of capturing the grim rhythm of life in the mines...[his] naturalistic prose and the strong characterization of young Asher Witherow make this a worthwhile debut from a noteworthy new author'.  The one negative voice comes from Kirkus Reviews who feels that the 'disjointed material and unmatured style make for some rough sledding'.

This review is from the October 19, 2005 issue of BookBrowse Recommends. Click here to go to this issue.



This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: New People
    New People
    by Danzy Senna
    Danzy Senna has spent virtually her entire writing career exploring the complicated intersections of...
  • Book Jacket: Hunger
    Hunger
    by Roxane Gay
    In this penetrating and fearless memoir, author Roxane Gay discusses her battle with body acceptance...
  • Book Jacket: The Black Witch
    The Black Witch
    by Laurie Forest
    In The Black Witch, Laurie Forest introduces her readers to an immersive fantasy world where ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
News of the World by Paulette Jiles

A brilliant work of historical fiction that explores the boundaries of family, responsibility, honor, and trust.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Young Jane Young
    by Gabrielle Zevin

    From the author of The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry comes a novel that will have everyone talking.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Hame

Hame by Annalena McAfee

A rich, sultry novel about a young American fleeing a crumbling marriage for a remote Scottish island.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

A F Out O W

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

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.