By Alan Heathcock, Graywolf Press, $15.00, 208 pages
Find Out the Truth about the Electrifying Town of Krafton
You won’t find the town of Krafton on any map. That’s because it is the product of writer Alan Heathcock’s imagination. If you enjoy reading about Lake Wobegon, Garrison Keillor’s fictitious home, you will delight in reading about Krafton.
Volt is a compilation of short stories that tell of the farms, land, families and experiences that exist within the boundaries of this small town. Heathcock never pinpoints where Krafton is located in an attempt to share universal and real stories without commenting on political or geographical issues. Many of the tales contain characters that make several appearances. Heathcock explores humanity down to the mundane details of everyday life. Violence, death and regret are common themes. Characters find themselves in dire circumstances and suffer as a result of bad choices. At the same time, the community remains strong. Compassion, kindness and friendship play as large a role as heartbreak. “Peacekeeper” is one of the stories that explores the themes of good and evil. The town sheriff must cover up a murder. But how can she do that and stand for justice? Readers will enjoy the twists and turns of this collection.
Reviewed by Elizabeth Franklin