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Poet and essayist Holm (English, Southwest St. Univ., MN; Eccentric Islands: Travels Real and Imaginary) has written an insightful, often humorous, and occasionally melancholy follow-up to The Heart Can Be Filled Anywhere on Earth, his book on growing up in an Icelandic community in Minneota, MN. Here he explores the country of his ancestors, its rich literary heritage, and the hardscrabble history that drove many Icelanders to the New World. At the same time, he casts a critical eye on life, politics, and religion in the United States. Brimnes, his tiny, isolated cottage only yards from the sea, with no phone or computer, provides a haven in the tradition of Thoreau's Walden Pond and a vantage point from which to view the modern world, which has begun to encroach on his beloved Iceland. Holm's wonderfully clear prose brings to life the dramatic landscape of Iceland and its friendly and independent people. Poems by him and others, including translations of works by Icelandic poets, are sprinkled throughout the text. Holm has produced an enjoyable book that belongs in all public and academic library collections.
—Linda M. Kaufmann