I had read a book of short stories by Tim Gautreaux, Welding with Children, and enjoyed it, and The Clearing was no disappointment, either. It centered on two brothers, one estranged, the other trying to bring his brother back to the fold, in a 1920s small Louisiana lumber town back in the swamps. Gautreaux really brings the backwaters of Louisiana into focus.
The Clearing offers a fascinating perspective of timber practices of the time and of WWI veterans trying to assimilate back into society. The novel draws a connection between them and the violence of the period. All the violent killers in the book are WWI vets. Makes me wonder how much inclination for violence come back from wars. Grade: B.