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Local People

Caldwell’s Latest Novel is a Rewrite


South Park resident and author, Jim Caldwell, explains upfront in his new novel that this is a rewrite of a draft that has sat on his bookshelf since 2005. “At the time, I did not realize that the second major thrust of this book,” he writes, “that of a society declaring gay relationships to be legal and legitimate, a reality to be recognized, would have come as far as it has since the initial manuscript. Developments in these seventeen years, as well as now knowing couples within my wider circle of friends and acquaintances, have helped to expand this tale into a richer, more complex narrative than the original words.”

Stach is the story of Stanley Krannovich, an old man dying from Black Lung disease from long laborious years in the mine. The only joy left in his remaining time on this earth is sitting on the backyard bench near the Montour trail with his life long, friend and fellow retired miner and confidant, Harry Farmur. Together they amused themselves by creating tales of the individuals who passed by on foot or bicycles.

Stach, as was his nickname, wrestled with a twofold conflict in his heart. Pending death wasn’t the problem. He had faith; had lived a full life, proud of his achievements in raising a family with traditional, ethic values. What troubled him was how could his wife of more than fifty years ever survive on his meager social security after he passed. The National Mining Association stood in the breach, disputing, delaying and denying the benefits he so deserved.

Yet a second, more personal, more crushing, bitter battle raged within his soul in these last years; a moral dilemma that he could not come to reconcile inside himself. Forced to choose, he sided with his repeated, long-standing beliefs.  In doing so, he disowned his younger son.

Stach is now available on Amazon. Here is a direct link:


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