Saturday, January 17, 2009

The Oxford Project: Photographs by Peter Feldstein, Text by Stephen G. Bloom

2009 Alex Award Winner!

I can't believe how much I loved this book. At first, I just flipped through and looked to see how the people had changed from the photos in 1984 to the photos in 2005-2007. But then I went back to the beginning and started to read. And wow. I cried on page 30. And in several other places. Oxford, Iowa, is a lot like my hometown of Blue Mound, Illinois. It's a small town where everyone knows everyone, and that has its perks and downfalls. When tragedy hits, the town rallies around you. But when you mess up, the town knows and gossip runs rampant. These photographs and amazing write-ups tell a great story of an average town in the Midwest. I found myself flipping back and forth to keep the different families straight. And I guessed at the labels of town drunk, town loser, town big shots, etc. It's amazing how fascinated I was by this book. Go to your library and read it! (It's awfully pricey to buy!)

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