Friday, September 10, 2010

Jim Minick

Jim Minick grew up eating blueberries, and for eight years he and his wife owned and operated Minick Berry Farm, a certified-organic, pick-your-own blueberry farm in Floyd County, VA. He writes a monthly column for The Roanoke Times New River Current.

Minick's new book is The Blueberry Years: A Memoir of Farm and Family.
Two books just traveled from shelf to bedside back to shelf. And in that journey they also, thankfully, traveled through me. One, Rob Amberg’s The New Road captures the story of the building of the last section of Interstate 26 through the North Carolina mountains. Rob weaves together his own insights and reactions to this highway along with oral histories of many people affected by it. And then Amberg’s stunning photographs illustrate this place’s beauty and destruction. No easy conclusions here—the road definitely brought desecration and development, but also safety and convenience. Rob captures this dilemma of our modern lives extremely well.

The second book I recently finished is Bernd Heinrich’s Mind of the Raven. I’m working on a novel about fire and healing that also includes a pet raven. So I wanted to learn about this fascinating creature, and Heinrich, the scientist/writer, offers plenty of insights and good stories—like the raven’s complex vocalizations, or the bird’s love of sliding on snow.

Ahead: A book on Pennsylvania Dutch folk healing titled Powwowing, again for a novel-in-progress; Ron Rash’s novel The World Made Straight; poetry by Lisa Parker and Fred Chappell. And for fun on my commute, any James Lee Burke novel I haven’t yet had travel through me as I travel down the road.
Visit Jim Minick's website.

--Marshal Zeringue