Richard Ford’s sentences are as seductive as they are simply constructed; his stories as emotionally affecting as they are well executed. The 69-year-old Mississippi native has tackled a number of quintessentially American topics over his 37-year writing career. Ford’s latest novel, Canada, might be set largely in the country north of the border, but its main concern is 15-year-old Dell Parsons, a Montana native whose world is turned upside down when his parents are arrested for robbing a bank.
Left to fend for himself with a friend of the family in Saskatchewan, Dell spends the rest of the narrative attempting to move past his parents’ transgressions and find his own identity amid trying circumstances. Canada is a coming-of-age novel of rare power and grace — rare if it had come from just about anyone other than Ford. Instead it’s just another indelible entry in its author’s ongoing fascination with the written word. Ford discusses Canada 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 6. Joseph-Beth Booksellers, 2692 Madison Road, Norwood. 513-396-8960, josephbeth.com.