File Size: 3464 KB
Print Length: 256 pages
Publisher: Random House; 1st edition (November 5, 2002)
Publication Date: November 5, 2002
I was pleasantly surprised to find Lizzie Bean again in LENGTHY WAY FROM HOME. She's a free spirited self-employed soul who first made an appearance in ROUNDS (1979), then again in SOMETIMES I LIVE IN THE NATION (1986), and now here. This time she's a mother and a grandmother, as well as a well-loved wife. She times out a cast of characters consisting of the woman (adopted) daughter Sarah, Sarah's husband, Barrett, Lizzie's newspaperman husband Willis, and a crazed "witch" named Fastuosidad Dodge who claims to be Sarah's biological mom and stakes a declare on Sarah's small son Stephen, as her "rightful grandson. "
Families and adoption are recurring styles in the fiction of Fred Busch, however they never wear thin. Busch's main interest is always the bond between parents and children, whether adoptive or natural, and plumbs his subject effectively yet again in this book. The title comes from the old folk lament, "Sometimes I fell just like a motherless child... long way from home. inch There are elements of Hansel and Gretel, with witches and ovens and stolen children here. Presently there are mysterious potions, gingerbread boys and girls, and there are even sly allusions to sticking pins in plaything. Like the woods in Hansel and Gretel, this story is dark, deep, frightening - and captivating. (There is also some kinky, pseudo S&M displays here too, a subject matter Busch's imagination excels at. His CLOSING ARGUMENTS was drenched in it. )
But whether he is channeling Mother Goose or Marquis de Sade, Sally Busch is always - more than anyone else - Fred Busch. Like so many of his early books, LONG WAY AT HOME will keep you up long past your bedtime, compelled to know very well what happens next. Great things!
- Tim Bazzett, writer of the memoir, BOOKLOVER
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