Autumn Rounds by Jacques Poulin
From Archipelago Books:
A heartfelt masterpiece about the joys of travel, reading, and companionship.
In rural Canada, dotted along the coast of a vast mauve river, live villagers of different stripes: a recently divorced hydroplane pilot, a factory-worker who closely resembles her fisherman husband, a probing motorcyclist with a pet St. Bernard, a pair of beautiful blonde joggers, and other curious characters.
For all their differences, each is brought together by a soft-spoken man, referred to only as “the Driver,” who travels up and down the coast each season, delivering books to areas not served by libraries and listening closely to the villager’s tales and to their woes.
This summer tour is bound to be different than all the rest. The Driver has made friends with a traveling band of musicians, jugglers, artists, and acrobats who decide to come along for a ride that the Driver has privately decided will be his last.
Jacques Poulin’s compassionate prose delves into the hidden pains of aging and loss without losing sight of the tremendous joy that can be found in making the world a little more livable for other people.