Eclectic Book Club: Holding On

Holding On by David Isay & Harvey Wang
The 50 individuals profiled in this delightful collection all were interviewed by Isay on his National Public Radio series The American Folklife Radio Project. Most of his subjects are older people who are dreamers, devoting themselves to such pursuits as creating religious grottoes, castles, bells and centers for dinosaur sculptures; conducting businesses, such as opera houses or bars, in ghost towns; or following unusual careers, for example, marriage brokering and restoring mannequins. There are those whose lifework has not been exotic, such as a country doctor who still charges a dollar for an office visit, a hat blocker and a sheepherder. But Isay approaches them all open-mindedly and sympathetically, and his warm commentary is supplemented by Wang's superb photos.