Without question, A Land More Kind Than Home is the best book I’ve read so far this year. It follows the story of a small, North Carolina church and a series of tragedies that befall the parishioners. The writing is breathtaking and impressive in its own right, but I was shocked to see this is Mr. Cash’s first novel. This does not read as the first novel of a man who’s still learning his way around the narrative process. He’s taken off running and his work far exceeds other contemporary ‘greats’ with dozens of novels under their belts.
The story is told from the first person perspective of a variety of narrators. I sometimes find this type of writing to be clumsy, or to feel gimmicky and unnecessary. That was certainly not the case here. There wasn’t a word or phrase out of place, and the variety of voices gave the story a much more interesting and authentic feel.
This is the kind of book that makes you cancel your dinner plans so you can perch uncomfortably on whatever seat is available while you race through the words to try and make sense of it all. Highly recommended.