Definitely a book that will keep you out of the woods.

Wisp of a Thing: A Novel of the TufaWisp of a Thing: A Novel of the Tufa by Alex Bledsoe

I enjoyed this outing into the present-day world of the Appalachian Fae. Singer-songwriter Rob travels to Needsville (love the name), Tennessee, looking for a song that will sing away his grief at the loss of his girlfriend. Guy that told him about the song was wearing sequins but they were backstage at the Opry at the time, so never mind. In Needsville he finds what he needs and then some, at considerable personal risk.

Strong sense of place and some solid characters, starting with Rob, who has unexpected depths, and the part-Fae, part not population of Cloud County. There is Doyle the mechanic and his Fae-lovestruck wife, Berklee. There is the truly icky Rockhouse Hicks and his wounded daughter/slash/lover Curnen (more ick, Bledsoe’s really pulling out all the stops on putting a new twist on that old marrying-their-sister back country trope). Especially there is Bliss Overbay, the I have to say pretty laissez-faire guardian of this motley crew, as in she’s ready to kill Rob before the night winds tell her not to (just roll with it). Some good lines, too, like

The building’s interior seemed bigger inside than it had appeared outside, like a hillbilly TARDIS.

and

“Germs and Jesus, that’s all I ever hear about,” the boy said in a voice too weary for his age. “Germs and Jesus. And you know something? You can’t see neither one of them.”

Definitely a book that will keep you out of the woods. At least these woods. Worth reading.

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