How can a religious man with four wives, 28 children and an incontinent dog be utterly alone? Boise-based novelist and Boise State professor of creative writing Brady Udall explores the answer to that question in his latest novel, The Lonely Polygamist, due out on Monday, May 3 (W. W. Norton & Company). Boiseans will get a peek at Golden Richards--a man surrounded by those he loves most, yet completely isolated--at a book-release party at Rediscovered Bookshop on Monday, May 3, at 7 p.m., where Udall will read from and sign copies of his new 600-page book.
Golden Richards is a large man who is under constant threat of being crushed by the weight of his responsibilities. His construction business is suffering, forcing him to find work farther from home, thereby keeping him away for days at a time. That, in turn, is causing a great deal of frustration among his wives, for whom time with their husband is already parceled out and spare. It also means that Golden Richards' 28 children have little contact with, input from him, or respect for him. Golden is a man who is, at best, distracted and happy to leave the child rearing to his wives as he suffers his few triumphs and many tribulations in a self-imposed solitude. In large part through Golden and his misunderstood, misguided and sometimes misanthropic 11-year-old son Rusty and Golden's fourth wife Trish, Udall gives us a rich, poignant look at a family whose lifestyle may seem absolutely aberrant, but for whom life's issues are wholeheartedly normal.
Monday, May 3, 7 p.m., FREE. Rediscovered Bookshop, 7079 Overland Road, 208-376-4229, rdbooks.org.