Book Review: Zorrie, by Laird Hunt

 Book review of Zorrie, by Laird Hunt


Character studies must be very difficult to write, especially if almost nothing happens by way of plot—so it’s testimony to author Laird Hunt that ‘Zorrie' is such an excellent read.

Zorrie’s an upper Midwest farm girl, orphaned, growing up in the 1930’s. She becomes a ‘ghost girl,’ painting luminous material on to clock faces––a blithe, historical use of radium that casts a shadow of tragedy over the story. Zorrie has no superpowers—she’s average in most every way—but we get taken deep into her thoughtfulness, demonstrating that a ‘simple’ life is never that simple. Life mostly happens to Zorrie, and even her few attempts at striking out in later life lead her right back to where she started. It’s beautiful, touching, and sad.

The prose, in tone, strikes me like a summer morning on a Midwest farm: too ordinary to comment on, too stunning for words. The language is spot on, not only the Indiana dialogue, but the internal voice, a matter-of-fact stream of consciousness. It’s refreshing that Mr. Hunt doesn’t try to make too much of his character, just crafting sentences that show the vast depth of thoughts and feelings, mostly left unsaid. 

Eliot Jordan


Book review:

Title: Zorrie

Author: Laird Hunt

Copyright: 2021

Pages: 161

ISBN: 978-1-63557-536-1


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