Our Souls at Night is a touching final book by the late novelist Kent Haruf. An elderly couple find new life in forging a relationship that overcomes the small town prejudices of assorted gossips and naysayers. As the book develops, we discover what their lives were like in their previous marriages.
In spending nights together, the two defy the small town moralists of Eastern Colorado, and find new joys in living and communicating with one another. They find the courage for this relationship in each other’s enjoyment of a new and honest way of living. Gradually they begin to understand what their lives might have been like, had they met at an earlier moment in time. Unfortunately, if somewhat inevitably, their relationship is something that their own children regard as being illicit and unconventional.
Most of the author’s previous books introduce a greater number of important protagonists. Because this book was written while the author was facing death, he most likely elected not to paint as complex a picture as his other books portray. However, the book is beautifully written, engrossing, and well worth reading for anyone with a taste for adult sujets. Regrettably, this is probably the last literary work we will see from an under-appreciated and critically acclaimed author.
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