cover image Winter


Rick Bass. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH), $18.95 (162pp) ISBN 978-0-395-51741-3

They were seeking a place to winter in the West, a secluded retreat where he could write and she could paint. Bass ( Oil Notes ) and his friend Elizabeth discovered the Yaak valley in northwest Montana. It was remote--with no electricity or phone service, only erratic radio reception, and reachable by a gravel-and-dirt road that required four-wheel drive. There was one saloon, a general store and a handful of year-round residents. The nearest town, Libby, was 40 miles away. As caretakers of a defunct hunting lodge, the couple settled into their winter idyll. Bass writes exuberantly about their season in the wilderness: blizzards, woodchopping, wildlife, the occasional social gatherings at the Dirty Shame Saloon. This charming celebration will give readers a fresh perception of winter. (Feb.)