The Evening Hour by Carter Sickels
A Novel

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 4 Critic Reviews



Most of the wealth in Dove Creek, West Virginia, is in the earth-in the coal seams that have provided generations with a way of life. Born and raised here, twenty-seven-year-old Cole Freeman has sidestepped work as a miner to become an aide in a nursing home. He's got a shock of bleached blond hair and a gentle touch well suited to the job. He's also a drug dealer, reselling the prescription drugs his older patients give him to a younger crowd looking for different kinds of escape. In this economically depressed, shifting landscape, Cole is floundering. The mining corporation is angling to buy the Freeman family's property, and Cole's protests only feel like stalling. Although he has often dreamed of leaving, he has a sense of duty to this land, especially after the death of his grandfather. His grandfather is not the only loss: Cole's one close friend, Terry Rose, has also slipped away from him, first to marriage, then to drugs. While Cole alternately attempts romance with two troubled women, he spends most of his time with the elderly patients at the home, desperately trying to ignore the decay of everything and everyone around him. Only when a disaster befalls these mountains is Cole forced to confront his fears and, finally, take decisive action-if not to save his world, to at least save himself. The Evening Hour marks the powerful debut of a writer who brings originality, nuance, and an incredible talent for character to an iconic American landscape in the throes of change.

About Carter Sickels

See more books from this Author
Carter Sickels, a graduate of the MFA program at Pennsylvania State University, was awarded fellowships to Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, the Sewanee Writers' Conference, and the MacDowell Colony. After living for a decade in New York City, Sickels left to earn a master's degree in folklore at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He now lives in Portland, Oregon.
Published January 23, 2012 by Bloomsbury USA. 336 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Evening Hour

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

Cole has had an off-again/on-again relationship with the wild and tattooed Charlotte, but he’s more interested in Lacy, a waitress at the Wigwam restaurant who lives an upright life and is morally committed to fight the depredations of the Heritage Coal Company, whose construction of a sludge dam...

Nov 01 2011 | Read Full Review of The Evening Hour: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

See more reviews from this publication

In the words of Cole’s dying grandfather, a fire and brimstone preacher and snake handler: “Why would I want to live on land that my people never walked on?” Cole meanders through life, making on-again, off-again friendships, but he vows to change direction as the drug trade turns violent a...

Oct 10 2011 | Read Full Review of The Evening Hour: A Novel

Oregon Live

Winning fellowships and residencies kept Sickels on the writing path.

Jan 21 2012 | Read Full Review of The Evening Hour: A Novel

Review (Barnes & Noble)

In this extraordinary debut, Carter Sickels mines the beautiful, damaged landscape of West Virginia for fictional treasure.

Jan 18 2012 | Read Full Review of The Evening Hour: A Novel

Reader Rating for The Evening Hour

An aggregated and normalized score based on 16 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review