Truck: A Love Story

Michael Perry, Author . HarperCollins $24.95 (281p) ISBN 978-0-06-057117-7

A part-time emergency medical technician, Perry delivers the latest account of his somewhat idiosyncratic life and times in a small Wisconsin town ("I am happy to live in a place where I can chuck a washing machine out my back door and no one judges my behavior unusual"). Here, he focuses on two main events over the course of a year: fixing up a 1951 International Harvester pickup truck and developing a romance with a local woman after a long stretch of failed relationships. Never cloying, Perry is a wry observer of how success in both areas "is the result of a modest accumulation of lucky breaks and the kindness of others," and displays the storytelling and observational skills that made his first book, Population: 485 , such a success. One of his most memorable descriptions is of an ex-patient, Ozzie, a motorcycle-loving ventilator-dependent quadriplegic, who gets to ride again after his wheelchair is hooked up to the cycle of his paraplegic friend Pat—"You haven't really explored the outer limits of health care until you've watched a Hell's Angel suction a tracheotomy tube." (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 08/14/2006
Release date: 11/01/2006
Paperback - 281 pages - 978-0-06-057118-4
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