This is like a coda written forty years after the symphony. If you haven't read The Big Rock Candy Mountain, I suggest you do so. Then, while it is still fresh in your mind, read Recapitulation. It fills in details left out of the first book and lets you get to know "Brucie" a lot better as he struggles through puberty and beyond in Salt Lake City. If you've grown attached to the Mason family through The Big Rock Candy Mountain, you'll find yourself wanting even more, as I did. Bruce Mason returns to Salt Lake City forty-five years after fleeing in anger and pain. As he passes by the old landmarks, the memories of his formative years begin to coil around him and eventually crowd his mind and haunt his dreams. The novel is floaty and dreamy and sepia-toned, taking Bruce back to events and feelings from the 1920s-30s in no particular order. Stegner's approach is very true to the nature of memory and nostalgia, including the need to whitewash experiences or downplay our culpability for things that went sour. I thought this was going to be the one Stegner novel I'd get through without crying, but he got me on the next to last page. I'm not sorry about that. I probably would have been disappointed if I'd finished it dry-eyed.