As a songwriter, Josh Ritter is a notable storyteller. All of his previous albums are filled with songs that are parables and yarns. Now he has finally written his first novel. Bright's Passage is the story of Henry Bright who returns home to West Virginia from the World War I traumatized. The novel moves from between past and present as it unfolds Bright's tale as he struggles to stay alive in both. In the trenches of Europe he has the Germans trying to kill him, while in the Appalachian mountains of home, he is chased by the Colonel in a hell-like surrounding as forest fires rage closer and closer. While much of the story works and is written in a way that matches Ritter's poetic songwriting, I wish he had developed the characters (especially those of the angel and the Colonel) more fully. Still, Josh Ritter is a good storyteller and I hope that he does continue to write more novels as well as songs.