Publisher: Harper Perennial
Source: Goodreads Giveaway
From the cover:
Living in a ramshackle Wisconsin farmhouse—faced with thirty-seven acres of fallen fences and overgrown fields, and informed by his pregnant wife that she intends to deliver their baby at home—Michael Perry plumbs his unorthodox childhood for clues to how to proceed as a farmer, a husband, and a father. Whether he’s remembering his younger days—when his city-bred parents took in sixty or so foster children while running a sheep and dairy farm—or describing what it’s like to be bitten in the butt while wrestling a pig, Perry flourishes in his trademark humor. But he also writes from the quieter corners of his heart, chronicling experiences as joyful as the birth of his child and as devastating as the death of a dear friend.
Have you ever read a book and thought there’s no way you could write a review that would do it justice? That’s how I’m feeling about this book. It was moving, touching, entertaining, witty, and everything else you could ever ask for from a book, and yet I’m having so much trouble expressing that into words. Maybe it’s because Perry’s writing is so beautiful and wonderful that my writing just can’t convey how amazing his book was. His writing had a strange effect on me. I felt like I was going through the chapters really fast and yet at the same time I felt like the stories being told me were slow with a rural feel to it. It felt like I was sitting there on his porch and he was slowly telling me the story of life.
His memoir is different from the other memoirs I’ve read in that it doesn’t surround one significant or tragic event. Instead, the book is a slice of life on the farm and everything else that life entails. The book describes his struggle to create a self sufficient farm with his family with trying to balance that with being a husband, a father, and a writer. The stories of the present are interlaced with stories from his past of when he was growing up on a farm with his parents and numerous siblings.
There was so much life in his book and it really came through in his words. Surprisingly enough even though he was writing about his life, he made me think a lot about my life and just life in general and what we all want out of it.
He had complete control of my emotions throughout the book. There were some stories that he shared that had me bursting out in laughter and then in the very next passage he had me in tears. He’s a truly gifted author and he definitely has a way with words. I’m looking forward to hunting down his other books and reading them.
I would highly recommend this book to memoir lovers as well as readers who are seeking a good book that will give them a laugh or two.