Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Way Station, by Clifford D. Simak (author), Eric Michael Summerer (narrator)

Audible Frontiers, July 2008 (original publication November 1963)

Enoch Wallace returned to his family's farm after the Civil War,  and farmed it with his father until a freak accident left him alone on it. Then, after some grieving and meditation on what the future might hold, he receives a most unusual visitor--a traveler from further away than he could have imagined.

Ulysses--the name Enoch gives him, suitable to the human tongue--is an emissary from Galactic Central, here to recruit Enoch to operate a way station for galactic travelers. A century later, he's still running it, and hasn't aged a day.

People are starting to notice.

And stresses are appearing in galactic civilization, even as Earth appears to be sliding toward a third and more terrible world war.

That description may make it seem strange that this is a very gentle book, quietly moving rather than brimming with action and excitement. Enoch, Ulysses, and Enoch's few human friends, the mailman Winslowe, the deaf-mute neighbor girl Lucy Fisher, and a new arrival in his life, CIA agent Claude Lewis, have some very knotty problems to work through in very little time.

This is a story about good people taking on literally world-changing problems, in a quiet, pastoral setting.

And it works.

Get to know these people. You won't regret it.

Highly recommended.

I bought this audiobook.