Forthright, sexy, irreverent, Randi blasts coal as well as any man. Her exuberance makes her irresistible; her straightforward intelligence gets her in trouble and starts her thinking that maybe Karen Silkwood really was onto something, that the men in charge try to do to women what they've always done to the land: harness, control, rape, exploit, manage.
In the diary Randi keeps during her shifts at the mine--Days, Swing, Graves--and later, at home, she tells us the story of her life on the new frontier: of dancing and drugging, of the Tough Guy Contest and Bedrock City, and of her own parents' ruptured marriage. Mostly she tells of her own longing for some kind of shelter, some kind of home amid endless wind and coal companies, amid bars and boomers of the modern American West.
David Breskin's novel is a triumph of voice. His Randi Bruce both celebrates and challenges her times, and delivers to fiction an American we rarely see.