The dunes of Jerry Engels’s childhood are those of Indiana Shores, a small slice of paradise resting between Gary and the industrial furnaces of Chicago. Jerry loves Lake Michigan and swimming its waters; he loves the beach and the live dune where he plays. But mostly, Jerry loves women.
This isn’t the awkward lust of an adolescent; Jerry is a boy who loves women and everything about them: a flower tucked into the hair, or the length of a leg. Teenage Jerry is a charmer, a flirt, “an erotic pantheist or a pantheistic eroticist.” Always, in his honesty and quirkiness, he is an irresistible and lovable character, himself. When he falls for Rosalind, his love takes on new, humorous, and wondrous dimensions.
At the Shores celebrates love in all of its forms; it is a coming-of-age novel for all generations.
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“A quiet, modest novel, and it is nearly perfect.”—The New York Review of Books
“If I had a class in American Adolescence, I’d teach At the Shoes in tandem with The Catcher in the Rye and Growing Up Absurd. This meticulously perceived and modest novel about growing up in America anything but absurd is probably closer to more lives than we might suspect. It does wonders for one’s sense of reality.”—Philip Roth
“It reminds us how wonderful love is before we learn to pride ourselves on outgrowing it.” —The New York Times
“The light music of Rogers’s style, the wry modesty of his language and the pouncing accuracy of his observations are easily enjoyed. ‘Her dress came slithering off like a tarpaulin from some public monument.’ Any book containing that line is worth reading.” —The New York Times Book Review