Novelist David Rhodes

Writer David Rhodes published three novels still in his twenties, was hailed as one of the best of his generation, was paralyzed in a flash, in a motorcycle accident, and dropped off the map for thirty years — living simply, quietly, almost invisibly in the rolling countryside of rural Wisconsin.

Three years ago, a young fan tracked him down. Discovered he was still writing. And brought him back.

His extraordinary new novel, “Driftless,” takes us deep into the lives and hollows of the world he has quietly observed, off the map, for decades. This hour, On Point: novelist David Rhodes and “Driftless.”

You can join the conversation. Can you imagine coming back after more than three decades of silence, and hard times, with a masterpiece? Share your thoughts.


David Rhodes joins us from Madison, Wisconsin. His books include “The Last Fair Deal Going Down” (1972), “The Easter Home” (1974), and “Rock Island Line” (1975). In 1977, he was paralyzed from the waist down as the result of a motorcycle accident. His critically acclaimed new novel is “Driftless.”

Read an excerpt from “Driftless.”

More links:

Poets & Writers magazine profiles Rhodes in its September/October issue, and offers capsule summaries of his novels and photos from the rural backroads near Wonewoc, Wisconsin, where Rhodes lives.

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