Thursday, Aug. 12, 2010

The Greenlanders by Jane Smiley

There's nothing fancy about the writing in Smiley's masterpiece, and yet every sentence of its 800 pages is clean and necessary. For the two weeks it took me to read it, I didn't want to be anywhere else but in late-medieval Greenland, following the passions and feuds and farming crises of European settlers trying to survive in the face of ecological doom. It all felt weirdly and plausibly contemporary.