Dreams of Arcadia by Brian Porter (Literary Fiction)

Writing: 4/4 Characters: 5/5 Plot: 4/4

A gentle book about an East Texas veterinarian who leaves Houston (and the end of a disappointing marriage) for the rural lands of his father’s youth. The main character is very human and very relatable — he is supported by a whole array of well depicted and quite real people from the individuals in the small town to his many relatives, most of whom he hasn’t seen in years (or has never actually met). There is quite a bit of description of the landscape, the real (and brand new to me) day to day big (and small) animal vet cases and procedures, and his own internal thought processes. As he works to solve the little (but critical) every day mysteries that populate his profession and interpersonal engagements, he is able to find a place for himself that feels (finally) like home. I particularly liked the solution to the issue of one family’s ailing cows when no diagnostic test could turn up any problems. I won’t give it away here!

Thank you to Legacy Book Press LLC and NetGalley for providing an advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. The book will be published on June 27th, 2023

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