Author: Michael Parker
Genre: Literary Fiction
Publication Date: May 21, 2019 ( Paperback Release-June 23, 2020)
Book Description: Set in the hardscrabble landscape of early 1900s Oklahoma, but timeless in its sensibility, Prairie Fever traces the intense dynamic between the Stewart sisters: the pragmatic Lorena and the chimerical Elise. The two are bound together not only by their isolation on the prairie but also by their deep emotional reliance on each other. That connection supersedes all else until the arrival of Gus McQueen.
When Gus arrives in Lone Wolf, Oklahoma, as a first time teacher, his inexperience is challenged by the wit and ingenuity of the Stewart sisters. Then one impulsive decision and a cataclysmic blizzard trap Elise and her horse on the prairie and forever change the balance of everything between the sisters, and with Gus McQueen. With honesty and poetic intensity and the deadpan humor of Paulette Jiles and Charles Portis, Parker reminds us of the consequences of our choices. Expansive and intimate, this novel tells the story of characters tested as much by life on the prairie as they are by their own churning hearts.
Rating: 3 Stars
Review: This is literary fiction to it’s core. A very quiet novel, where the landscape is as much a main character as the people Parker writes about. Set in Oklahoma, this story centers around sisters Lorena and Elise and their teacher Gus McQueen.
Lorena and Elise grew up in Lone Wolf, OK. Their parents still reeling from the death of their brothers due to “prairie fever”. The sisters are as tight you can be. Gus McQueen move there and what ensues is a love triangle that causes a rift in this family so deep.
Told in multiple point of views, you will feel for each of these characters. Told through narrative and letters, you will get a perspective that seems unique at times.
This is definitely a book for fans of Literary Fiction. There is little to no plot, but I found myself so curious what would become of these characters at the end.
Thank you NetGalley and Algonquin for an Advanced Reader’s Copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.