Cormac McCarthy's Life in Books
The Stonemason is a taut, expansively imagined drama about four generations of an African-American family.
Set in Louisville, Kentucky, in the 1970s, the Telfairs are stonemasons and have been for generations. Ben Telfair has given up his education to apprentice himself to his grandfather, Papaw, a man who knows that "true masonry is not held together by cement but...by the warp of the world." Out of the love that binds these two men and the gulf that separates them from the Telfairs who have forsaken—or dishonored—the family trade, the drama features precise observation of the physical world; language that has the bite of common speech and the force of Biblical prose.