Kevin Canty, who has visited Square Books on several occasions and is one of the writers Larry Brown most admired, has published his first novel in many years. The Underworld takes its name literally, from the true story of a fire in a silver mining town whose survivors all were connected in some way to those who perished, a story of the necessity for love in a devastated community, the sort of story that few writers can penetrate and bring to life the way that Canty can.— From Richard's 2017 Picks
In The Underworld, Kevin Canty tells a story that begins with a disastrous fire inspired by a true incident in an isolated silver mining town in Idaho in the 1970s. Everyone in town had a friend, a lover, a brother, a husband killed in the mine. The Underworld imagines the lives of a handful of survivors and their loved ones Jordan, a young widow with twin children; David, a college student trying to make a life for himself in another town; Lionel, a lifelong hard-rock miner as they struggle to come to terms with the loss. It's a tough, hard-working, hard-drinking town, a town of whores and priests and bar fights, but nobody's tough enough to get through this undamaged. A powerful and unforgettable tale about small-town lives and the healing power of love in the midst of suffering.