"Quietly entertaining, thought-filled. . . . The narrative voice is particularly congenial–cool and unflappable, often humorous." –Washington Post Book World
Not since The Moviegoer has a first novel limned the human condition with such originality and subtle insight. A small-town iconoclast who is at once deeply principled and occasionally as absurd as the world he rebels against, Quintus Horatius Flaccus (or Horace) has assumed the name of a Roman poet and has forsworn automobiles, and entertains himself by telephoning strangers to ask them what love is or what they think of St. Bernards. His neighbors in the Midwestern town of Oblivion consider him wacko. This suits Horace just fine, since all he wants in life is "the serenity of not caring."
But people are conspiring to make Horace care about them. There’s the dying librarian who finds Horace’s morbid curiosity oddly bracing. There’s the mysterious woman whom Horace rescues, only to become obsessed with her identity. And as Horace finds himself drawn into their affairs, Horace Afoot depicts the unruly dialogue of his mind and heart with sly wit and splendid generosity of feeling.
"Delights continuously with its humor, originality and . . . unfolding personalities." –Rocky Mountain News
Published by Vintage Dec 29, 1998| 288 Pages| 5-3/16 x 8| ISBN 9780375703782