Temple Stream by Bill Roorbach
A Rural Odyssey

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I call the stream ours because our house is in its valley and a corner of our land touches the stream at a dramatic bend, and because my wife and our daughter (always in the company of our dogs) walk down to that bend every morning, every season. The stream is our point of contact with all the waters of the world.

Great blue herons, yellow birches, damselflies, and beavers are among the many runes by which Bill Roorbach discovers a universe of nature along the stream that runs by his home in Farmington, Maine. Populated by an oddball cast of characters to whom the generous-spirited Roorbach (aka “The Professor”) and his family might always be outsiders, these pages chronicle one man’s determination – sometimes with hilarious results – to follow his stream directly to its elusive source. Acclaimed essayist as well as award-winning author of fiction, Bill Roorbach brings his singular literary gifts to a book that is inspirational, funny, loving, and filled with the wonder of living side by side with the natural world.

Praise for Bill Roorbach “Roorbach falls, for me, into that small category of writers whose every book I must read, then reread.” —Jay Parini, author of The Apprentice Lover “Here is a narrator who makes you glad to be alive, giddy to be in his presence, grateful to love friends and family and dogs with generosity and abandon, to show tenderness and thus be saved by strangers.” —Melanie Rae Thon, author of First, Body

“Roorbach is a master at capturing and expressing joy.” —Hartford Courant

“Roorbach has a knack for tapping into deep undercurrents and bringing them to the surface with the least amount of fanfare or fuss.” —L.A. Weekly

About Bill Roorbach

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Bill Roorbach, recent winner of an O. Henry Award, is the author of Big Bend, winner of the Flannery O'Connor Award; a novel, The Smallest Color; and a memoir, Summers with Juliet, among other books of nonfiction. His short work has appeared in numerous publications, including the Atlantic, Granta, and the New York Times Magazine, and been widely anthologized. Currently, he holds the Jenks Chair in Contemporary American Letters at the College of the Holy Cross. Temple Stream flows from an article that first appeared in Harper's Magazine.
Published July 26, 2005 by The Dial Press. 304 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Nature & Wildlife, Travel, Science & Math. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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His initial confrontation with Pomeroy crystallizes the Down Maine antipathy that anyone from “away” will immediately recognize—a friend will later explain that even after 30 years’ residency, he and his wife are still regarded as “full-time summer people.” Sourcing Temple Stream goes on, however...

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Publishers Weekly

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Roorbach (Big Bend ) takes readers on a journey in and around Temple Stream, which flows by his 1874 home near Farmington, Maine, about 40 miles northwest of Augusta.

May 30 2005 | Read Full Review of Temple Stream: A Rural Odyssey

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