The Sweet Second Summer of Kitty Malone is the newest—one hopes not the final—instalment of the Salem saga.
A known terrain, familiar to readers, is … always an advantage to a novelist who sets out, as Matt Cohen has obviously done, on a career of substantial writing. And Salem, with its countryside of decaying Upper Canadian farms and its raffish inhabitants, began to make its appearance quite early in Cohen's career….
Like all figures in the Sancho Panza tradition, the typical inhabitants of Salem are survivors, and they tend also in their own strange ways to triumph over existence, so that The Sweet Second Summer of Kitty Malone goes beyond the despair of...
(The entire section is 450 words.)