bookrev: Wanderer Springs by Robert Flynn
Most people think of Texas and think of Houston, Dallas, Austin, San Antonio. But the stories of Texas are really the tales of its small towns, how they started, how they grew, how they survived or died.
Robert Flynn’s Wanderer Springs is a masterfully written novel of one such town, told through the eyes of one of its products, one of its survivors, one of its storytellers.
The novel weaves together a vast cast of characters and generations of families, and its easy to get lost or confused between the Spruill family or the Slocum family or the Shipman family (a ten page who’s who is included for your reference pleasure). But these intertwining stories and familes are what makes a small Texas town what it is, and their tales are its history.
Mixed in with the history of the town and its families is the story of Will Callaghan, heading back to Wanderer Springs for the funeral connected to a tragic event from his long ago high school life. As he gets physically and mentally closer to Wanderer Springs, the stories of the town show their influence on his life, on his friends and on the decisions he made. A history teacher and writer by trade, Will Callaghan revists several “ghosts” from Wanderer Springs: townspeople, his loving wife, his father, past loves and friends.
Bob Flynn has won several awards for his writing, and, while I have been a long time reader and fan of his shory story work, this novel is one of the most authentic Texas works to ever grace my shelves. Highly reccommended.