• Paperback: 336 pages
• Publisher: Harper Perennial (August 12, 2013)
From the acclaimed author of Coop and Population: 485 comes a portrait of a unique individual and a dedicated way of life.
What can we learn about life, love, and artillery from an eighty-two-year-old man whose favorite hobby is firing his homemade cannons? Visit by visit—often with his young daughters in tow—author Michael Perry finds out.
Toiling in his shop, Tom Hartwig makes gag shovel handles, parts for quarter-million-dollar farm equipment, and—now and then—batches of potentially “extralegal” explosives. Tom, who is approaching his sixtieth wedding anniversary with his wife, Arlene, and is famous for driving a team of oxen in local parades, has stories dating back to the days of his prize Model A and an antiauthoritarian streak refreshed daily by the interstate that was shoved through his front yard in 1965 and now dumps more than eight million vehicles past his kitchen window every year. And yet Visiting Tom is dominated by the elderly man’s equanimity and ultimately—when he and Perry converse as husbands and the fathers of daughters—unvarnished tenderness.
Michael Perry is an amateur pig farmer, an active member of the local rescue service, and a contributing editor to Men’s Health. He lives in rural Wisconsin with his wife and two daughters, and can be found online at www.sneezingcow.com.
Michael’s Tour Stops
Wednesday, August 14th: Bibliotica
Thursday, August 15th: BookNAround
Monday, August 19th: The Road to Here
Tuesday, August 20th: Book Club Classics!
Thursday, August 22nd: Capricious Reader
Wednesday, September 4th: Sophisticated Dorkiness
Thursday, September 5th: Apples and Arteries
Monday, September 9th: It’s All About Books
Tuesday, September 10th: Read. Write. Repeat.
Thursday, September 12th: The Library of Alexandra
TBD: Bloggin’ ‘Bout Books