Sense of place defines family relationships
Carrie La Seur’s finely crafted debut chronicles a woman’s complicated relationship with her hometown of Billings, Montana, her relatives who stayed behind and her ancestral history. La Seur’s graceful prose in The Home Place complements her incisive character studies of a family that has managed to keep most of its problems behind closed doors.
Alma Terrebonne left Billings and the family’s “home place” more than 15 years ago to attend college on a full scholarship, shortly after her parents were killed in a car accident that maimed her younger sister, Vicky. Now an attorney in Seattle, Alma only returns to Billings to attend family events.
Alma returns home when Vicky is found frozen to death. The single mother of 11-year-old Brittany, Vicky led a troubled life of drugs, bad boyfriends and debt. The Home Place Carrie La Seur William Moore
La Seur poignantly shows how characters are influenced by a sense of place, affecting their choices in life.
The Home Place is one of the year’s strongest debuts.