A fierce, gentle beauty permeates Jim Harrison's latest novel, Returning to Earth
(Grove), set in the cold, clear north of Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Donald, an earthy man of Chippewa-Finnish descent who is dying of Lou Gehrig's disease, dictates his family history to his wife, Cynthia, who inserts her grief-laced commentary into the transcript. As Donald, observing nature and humanity, marvels at how there is "no inside or outside to the world if you get what I mean," just spirit everywhere, those who care for him mark the intersections of anguish and love.
— Cathleen Medwick