The Trackers: A Novel
From the New York Times bestselling author of Cold Mountain and Varina, a stunning new novel that paints a vivid portrait of life in the Great Depression
Hurtling past the downtrodden communities of Depression-era America, painter Val Welch travels westward to the rural town of Dawes, Wyoming. Through a stroke of luck, he’s landed a New Deal assignment to create a mural representing the region for their new Post Office.
A wealthy art lover named John Long and his wife Eve have agreed to host Val at their sprawling ranch. Rumors and intrigue surround the couple: Eve left behind an itinerant life riding the rails and singing in a western swing band. Long holds shady political aspirations, but was once a WWI sniper—and his right hand is a mysterious elder cowboy, a vestige of the violent old west. Val quickly finds himself entranced by their lives.
One day, Eve flees home with a valuable painting in tow, and Long recruits Val to hit the road with a mission of tracking her down. Journeying from ramshackle Hoovervilles to San Francisco nightclubs to the swamps of Florida, Val's search for Eve narrows, and he soon turns up secrets that could spark formidable changes for all of them.
In The Trackers, singular American writer Charles Frazier conjures up the lives of everyday people during an extraordinary period of history that bears uncanny resemblance to our own. With the keen perceptions of humanity and transcendent storytelling that have made him beloved for decades, Frazier has created a powerful and timeless new classic.
Praise for The Trackers: A Novel
“Frazier is in top form…. Period-authentic, and the writing hums with spectacular word-images…. [A] propulsive tale of individualistic characters striving to beat the odds.” — Booklist (starred review)
"The book’s continental scope proves that the lavishly talented Charles Frazier is not just a regional novelist. “The Trackers” is a novel of suspense with an all-American sting."
— Washington Post
“Frazier deftly blends an historical perspective throughout his fictional tale…Even though it’s set 86 years ago, there are moments that are eerie in their echoes of the present…There’s a lot more worth savoring in “The Trackers,” including reflections on the meaning of art, the mythos of the American West, and what it really takes to start again. But Val is our narrator and after a transcontinental adventure, the book satisfyingly ends where it began, with Val working on his mural in Dawes, Wyoming, adding a couple final details to complete the painting.”
— Associated Press