August by Callan Wink review – coming of age in rural America

The shadow of the Southern Gothic imbues this debut novel with a subtle sense of foreboding

August, the eponymous hero of Callan Wink’s debut novel, receives his fair share of unwanted advice. Mostly from other men, mostly about women. He does his level best to forget it all and strike out on his own.

Like Wink’s previous stories, August is set in the open expanse of the American midwest. It begins on the family dairy farm and follows characters from his short story “Breatharians” – teenage August, father Darwin, and mother Bonnie. His father wants him to carry on at the farm; his mother wants him to go to college. Young Augie is happy with his job killing stray cats, a dollar a tail.

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