The Long Light of Those Days: Recollections of a Vermont Village at Mid-Century

Bruce Coffin has an eye for exalted moments and an ear for the language in which those moments live again. He's created a splendid remembrance of his boyhood days in Woodstock, growing up in a simpler and sweeter time.

"You can go home again, if only in memory," Bruce assures us in this illuminating record of growing up in a small Vermont village fifty years ago....

With the remarkable clarity of Norman Rockwell paintings, the author reveals the people, sights, sounds, and atmosphere of Woodstock, whose natural and manmade beauty has made it a memorable landmark.

"I wanted," he writes, "to restore the Woodstock I had first known, where houses were largely homes and not real estate investments, and where the commercial buildings were places for stores serving the basic needs of the community and its outlying farming districts rather than so many feet of retail space for profiting from the consumer demands of transients and tourists. I wanted to put it back just the way it had been before I grew up and went away, before it all changed."

Anyone who has spent time here will recognize the places and names in the book, but everyone will appreciate his recreation of the delight and wonder with which youth view the world and the kind of memories we all cherish.

This book brings a village to life in such a way that we feel our own histories in his stories and descriptions of the people, bicycles, stores, ball games, homes, and mountains and woods of Woodstock.