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The Fall of the Year

3.91  ·  Rating Details ·  204 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
Set in the beautiful mountains of Kingdom County, THE FALL OF THE YEAR is Howard Frank Mosher's brilliant autobiographical novel about love in all its forms, from friendship to the most passionate romance, in a place where family, community, vocation, and the natural world still matter profoundly. Here are the lively stories of the eccentric inhabitants of Kingdom County, ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published October 11th 2000 by Mariner Books (first published 1999)
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Nov 05, 2015 Melki rated it it was amazing
"How many times do I have to tell you? No one can predict the future. It's the second greatest mystery there is."

"What's the first?"

"Love," said the fortuneteller. "Love is the greatest mystery and most powerful force in the universe."

Mosher's beautiful novel is presented as a series of short stories, though you would not want to read one without the others. Here you will meet our hero Frank Bennett. A young man just out of college and contemplating the seminary, his interactions with the town
Susan Ritz
Sep 22, 2013 Susan Ritz rated it it was amazing
I don't know why it has taken me so long to read Howard Frank Mosher. This novel of stories has made me an absolute fan. The Fall of the Year was the perfect book to read while on my retreat in Craftsbury, in the Kingdom Mosher so achingly describes in this book that is nostalgic, humorous, magical and filled with description of a world that I can still see up here, or at least the last hints of it. Fortunetellers, Chinese storekeepers, baseball, trout fishing, and small town conflict all come t ...more
Garth Mailman
Aug 06, 2014 Garth Mailman rated it it was amazing
Howard Frank Mosher’s The Fall of the Year is more a series of vignettes than a conventional novel but it captures a snapshot of tiny Kingdom Common amid the Green Mountains of Northern Vermont near the Quebec Border of Canada. The narrator Frank has come home to spend the summer with his uncle and adopted Father, George the parish priest who coaches the local baseball team, hunts and fishes. Little Quebec and Irishtown in cruder hands would seem caricatures. Filled with the odd characters that ...more
Feb 11, 2008 Lynn rated it liked it
I thought this was a really nice little read. It's more of a series of linked short stories than a novel. The characters were vibrant and funny. A very nice, relaxing read.
Oct 18, 2016 Harry rated it really liked it
This was an enjoyable read, peaceful and heart-warming. Characters with good values trying to help each other and their community in a well written narrative. There was one chapter when a mentalist comes to town that seemed to depart from the overall feel and turns magical/unbelievable. I thought this detracted from the strong message the book imparted. It's fine to point out that not everything is under our control and our beliefs and views may be narrower than we would hope but this doesn't re ...more
Sep 26, 2010 Dave rated it really liked it
Mosher's stories just resonate with me. Why? I have no idea, but perhaps the nostalgic feel he weaves into his tales carries weight with me. This book is written as a fictional? autobiographical piece by a man named Frank Bennett. Once again the setting is the Kingdom Common, an out-of-the-way patch in the mountains of Northern Vermont just across the way from Canada. The chapters are told in a virtual series of short stories concerning eclectic characters of the Common or ones passing breifly t ...more
Oct 18, 2013 Dave rated it really liked it
This was, somehow, the first Mosher I'd read. This one definitely fits into my wheelhouse being composed of inter-weaving stories of a single small town.

Mosher's voice here was a unique mix of straight-forward, almost terse, New England, lightened by a good deal of humor, and grounded in a faith inspired by the natural beauty of the land in which the stories took place. His writing certainly reminded me of other authors I really enjoy - Wendell Berry, Richard Russo (especially his novels about
Carl Williams
May 12, 2014 Carl Williams rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
I‘ve enjoyed the novels of Howard Frank Mosher for some time. While he’s certainly a regional kind of writer, he has the knack of catching rural life at the cusp of a new, shrunken, global world—a life that may be nostalgic and loving but also sometimes petty and vengeful and xenophobic. This novel, with its folky style and clear gaze is, along with Northern Borders, one of my favorites. A good read.
Jul 11, 2012 Tom rated it really liked it
A small town in northern Vermont, hidden in the mountains next to Quebec. An old priest, a young man just out of college, a fortuneteller, and some other great characters planet this town. Outsiders - a circus, a mind reader, a young girl from Montreal, come in and enrich the lives, even change the lives, of the villagers. This book makes you smile, makes you feel good. It's the kind of book you read on a snowy day with a fire going strong in the fireplace.
Feb 27, 2011 Liz rated it really liked it
What a delightful read if you are in the mood for something fun and nostalgic. An orphan is adopted by an unorthodox Catholic Priest and grows up in small town Kingdom Common near the Canadian Border. Each chapter explores a character who lives in the town. The characters are loveable and mysterious. The twist at the end of the book is a bit contrived, but when I finished it, I was left with a smile for the rest of the day.
Susan Ovans
Jan 03, 2016 Susan Ovans rated it liked it
Lovely story with engaging characters, but the end was unsatisfying. This is a problem with a lot of contemporary literature and I'm not sure it's a writer's problem or an editor's one. Either way it makes this reader feel a sense of acquaintanceship with this author (and the people he creates), but not friendship.
Steven Robinson
Aug 14, 2016 Steven Robinson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can hear my grandfather telling me these stories.

My grandfather was a great story teller, and delighted in the theatrics of the story. Howard Frank brings the theatrics to life in his story telling. This is the second time I have read this book and can't wait to read it again someday.
Jul 19, 2016 Peter rated it it was amazing
Shelves: meaningful, beautiful
It read more like a series of short stories, but the stories were awesome! We do follow a single character and his various relationship, so the book has a great deal of unity. With Mosher, I become enmeshed in the territory, both in setting and the emotional territory of the characters. Mosher is one of my favorites.
Jun 23, 2012 Abbey rated it really liked it
Howard Frank Mosher writes beautifully about a normal, small town filled with it's fair share of oddities. It is my latest favorite novel, and I recommend to anyone who enjoys whimsy and story telling.
This book made me want to live in Vermont. It wasn't super exciting, and at times it was just plain weird, but it was fun, and it didn't seem as fluffy as a random romance novel. It was an easy read that didn't feel like a waste of my time I guess. Man I am bad at describing books.
Nov 11, 2013 Tara rated it it was amazing
A really good read. I was pleasantly surprised how easily I was drawn into the story. Actually, it feels more like a lot of little stories that culminate in the end. I definitely recommend this book.
May 31, 2010 Lori rated it it was amazing
This is my 2nd reading of "The Fall of the Year". Mosher's novels are some of my all time favorites. Living in Vermont only makes me appreciate this book more, but there are universal truths of small town life that don't require residence to appreciate.
Feb 07, 2008 Rhonda rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Richard Russo
Beautiful small town stories full of lovable, sometimes eccentric, characters and gorgeous landscapes.
Apr 19, 2014 Sophie rated it it was ok
2.5 stars. It was predictable. Somewhat charming, but I wouldn't read it again. I didn't love the writing style and tone.
Jun 29, 2008 Kelly rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, love-story, humor
I enjoyed this book. It's quirky, humorous, funny. Once you look past the humor, there are many life lessons in this little book.
Lucinda Mccloud
Nov 02, 2013 Lucinda Mccloud rated it liked it

Wonderful, unique, and memorable characters. Always fun to visit this Northeast Kingdom of Vermont!
Jeannie rated it it was amazing
Dec 06, 2007
Si rated it it was amazing
May 09, 2007
Leips rated it it was amazing
Apr 11, 2013
Sarah Chamberlain
Sarah Chamberlain rated it really liked it
May 16, 2012
Janet rated it really liked it
Dec 29, 2007
Bill rated it really liked it
Jul 15, 2012
Steve rated it liked it
May 19, 2014
Cyndy Hakansson
Cyndy Hakansson rated it really liked it
Mar 25, 2016
Steve rated it liked it
Sep 24, 2013
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Howard Frank Mosher is the author of ten novels and two memoirs. Four of his novels have been made into feature films including, most recently, Northern Borders, starring Bruce Dern. Howard and his wife of 50 years, Phillis, have lived in Vermont’s fabled Northeast Kingdom since 1964. His fiction, set in the world of “Kingdom County,” chronicles the intertwining family histories of the natives, w ...more
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