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Series No.: 092
ISBN: 1-892295-35-0, Pages: 493
American Literature, Fiction
Utah, Toby Olson's fourth novel, is a haunting tale that serves as a both a continuation and a tantalizing expansion of the times that have possessed his work. Told in the first person and set against the backdrop of contemporary America, the book beautifully captures the intertwining lives of an unforgettable group of men and women, each displaced by old loves and modern life.
At the center of the novel is David, a masseur whose hands reveal secrets and ease pain. But now his own pain-from the death of his friend Anson-is complicated by the arrival of a box of mementos recalling his life with Lorca, the wife who abandoned him years before without a trace. These memories of his lost wife and friend send him back in search of his past-to his Navy buddy Melchior; to his friends Carl and Anne, whose once thriving marriage, he finds, has come undone; and ultimately to the eerie, sunbaked desert landscape of Utah, where the past is claimed, where Lorca is found, and the power of old ties si felt once more.
Part parable, part novel of quest, Utah poetically renders the dilemma of sexual preference, the sensuality of physical love, the unspoken intimicies of friendship, and the mysterious bonds that link human lives. Reviewing this book upon its original publication, the Los Angeles Times noted that " Utah is, above all, a novel of immense beauty."
Toby Olson is the author of six novels and several collections of poetry. He divides his time between Philadelphia and Cape Cod.