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The Northwoods Hymnal is full of stories about connecting and coping, hoping that a little community will keep out the cold of winter. Hawley's characters, from young punk rockers to tight-permed, white-haired women, accomplish that in a myriad of ways: drizzling the world in almond bark, a sauna, and a jump in the snow, disinterring loved ones only to bury them closer to home. The stories are wholly Midwestern, unassuming and funny, and you'll find they stay with you through the bleak, help with the coping, without asking much in return. And that's just the stories. The songs, also quiet, also sneaky in the way they win you over, will keep you warm all the winter long.
River Otter Press
St. Paul, Minnesota
Hawley, Luke, "Northwoods Hymnal" (2013). Books by Dordt Authors. 3.