The first novel in Arno Camenisch’s celebrated “alpine” trilogy unfolds over a single summer. The four main (unnamed) characters are a dairyman, his farmhand, a cowherd, and a swineherd, who all live and work in close proximity–but this is no Heidi. Theirs is an existence marked by dangerous work, solitude, cruelty, alcoholism, and sheer stubbornness; yet Camenisch’s handling of these lives is full of affection, surreal humor, and a brilliant ear for the sounds of the setting.
“The sound of the words and of the sentences is highly musical. Camenisch shows himself to be an accomplished rhythmist, a poet in his prose” – Bündner Tagblatt
“Camenisch writes unique and wonderful prose that finds its own rhythm and its own poetry” – Die Berliner Literaturkritik
“The magic of Camenisch’s prose, so delightfully translated by McLaughlin, comes in…symphonic bursts. The author’s utter sensitivity insures against cliché, even as he advances on to such well-trod literary territory: man against nature, man against animal, man against machine, man against himself.” – Nathaniel Popkin, Fanzine