Carrie's Reviews > Coop: A Family, a Farm, and the Pursuit of One Good Egg

Coop by Michael  Perry
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's review
Jan 19, 12

Read from January 02 to 17, 2012

Coop was alternately hilarious, poignant, thought-provoking...and occasionally really, really boring. The first few chapters were entirely charming, and the last few as well, but there's a long time in the middle when it seems like nothing happens. Some parts were so good that I wanted to read them aloud to someone, and then a few pages later I'd find myself skimming ahead, looking for some action. So I definitely recommend it, with the exception of chapters four through eight.

I thought the opening paragraph was beautiful:

"At the earliest edges of my memory, my father is plowing, and I am running behind him. I see my feet, going pat-pat-pat over the soil. I see my father, left hand on the wheel, right forearm braced against the fender, head turning back to check the depth of the plow, then forward to gauge his progress. The soil is red and sandy in the high spots and dark and loamy in the low spots, where it curls from the plowshares like strips of licorice, leaving me this square, shin-deep trough in which to travel. I trail the sound of the little tractor, so close to ground I can hear the soft plop of the overturned clods...There is my father on his underpowered Ford Ferguson, and there is me trotting right behind him, and there is God above, looking down as I run the straight groove of the furrow, my life laid out on a line drawn in the earth."

I also liked his thoughts about why he's taking his daughter to church, although he himself has his doubts:
"As eternally dangerous as it might be to end up a bumbling agnostic, it may be even more dangerous to BEGIN there."
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