All Shall Be Well; and All Shall Be Well; and All Manner of Things Shall Be Well

Tod Wodicka, Author . Pantheon $24 (266p) ISBN 978-0-375-42473-1

A man displaced anchors Wodicka's funny, poignant and historically canny debut, previously published in Britain. With the death of his beloved wife, Kitty, 63-year-old Burt Hecker sells the Queens Falls, N.Y., B&B he and his wife ran and heads to Germany to reinvent himself as a medieval re-enactor with a troupe of chanters for the 900th anniversary of the birthday of Hildegard von Bingen. Burt, a dedicated member of the Confraternity of Times Lost Regained, never strays “Out of Period” (OOP), wearing a tunic and drinking homemade mead; derailed emotionally, he is estranged from his two grown children—June, who is on the verge of single motherhood and wants to return home but doesn't know her father has sold the inn, and Tristan, a brilliant Juilliard dropout who moved to Poland to reattach himself to the Lemko roots of his emigrant grandmother and now headlines at a Prague jazz club with a group of folk musicians. With the help of family lawyer Lonna Katsav, Burt attempts a détente with his resentful children. Burt's cutting wit and intelligence comprise the novel's intellectual center, while his unfettered love for Kitty gives it its massive heart. (Jan.)

Reviewed on: 11/19/2007
Release date: 01/01/2008
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 272 pages - 978-0-307-27887-6
Open Ebook - 154 pages - 978-0-307-37717-3
Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-1-4070-1440-1
Paperback - 266 pages - 978-0-224-08047-7
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio
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