Publisher: Penguin Audio
Date: June 2004
Duration: 11 hours 48 minutes
At once riveting and heartbreaking, Back Roads, with its pitch-perfect characters, captured the maddening confusion of adolescence and announced the arrival of a formidable talent in Tawni O'Dell, a writer who finds the humor and humanity in the bleakest states.
With her eagerly awaited second novel, Coal Run, O'Dell takes us back to the coal mining country of western Pennsylvania, the territory she renders with such striking authenticity. Ivan Zoschenko, the local deputy and erstwhile football legend, "The Great Ivan Z," sidelined years ago by a knee injury, spends a week seemingly preparing for an old teammate's imminent release from prison. In doing so, Ivan introduces a rich cast of characters—his unexpectedly wise and comic former beauty queen sister, his former idol Val Claypool, and the young woman whose life he changed forever. And during the events of this week, Ivan confronts his demons and reveals himself to be a man whose conscience is burdened by a long-held and shocking secret that must be reckoned with.
Driven by the same raw energy, humor, suspense, and compassion for a place and a way of life that made O'Dell's first novel so unforgettable, Coal Run is an uncompromising and absorbing novel that advances on, even transcends, the incredible promise of Back Roads.