News and Citizen Review

The Lamoille Stories

Uncle Benoit’s Wake and Other Tales from Vermont

By Bill Schubart

If you didn’t get a copy of the new book, The Lamoille Stories, for Christmas, quick! go out and buy one today when you are returning gifts. This is a must read for readers of the News & Citizen because if you are an old timer, you are going to laugh like heck and if you just moved here – well, you are going to laugh like heck and perhaps understand your neighbor better.

Author Bill Schubart grew up in Lamoille County amidst the independent and creative types he tattles on in his new book, The Lamoille Stories. Though Bill moved away to the Peoples Republic of Chittenden County and made good, it’s clear his heart remains true! Bill remembers his Vermont upbringing well and truly. The not-so-tongue-in-cheek amusement he gets out of the carrying on and making do of the folks in his stories reeks with nostalgia and affection.

The Lamoille Stories are littered with names familiar to locals – many of us are probably still sitting down to table with them. Their exploits in the case of some of Schubart’s tales are already the stuff of legend we’ve heard when gram and gramp get to settin’ around the stove with friends. Like the stories we’ve heard, Bill’s tales are a mite embroidered. Folks are even larger than their models may have been in life, but by golly, local readers will be certain to know exactly who Bill is talking about.

Maybe the story in which a junkyard fence goes up in response to a new state law mixes a famous Route 66 postcard with the likely response of a harassed Vermont shade tree mechanic, but a kernel of pure truth is revealed. Despite the delightful hyperbole and tall tale taste of The Lamoille Stories, author Bill Schubart ain’t makin’ much up!

The stories peal out with an authentic ring, laced with the updated Habitant-style, French-English patois of Lamoille County in the ‘50s. If you grew up in the County and are now attending your 10th, 20th or 30th high school reunion, you probably married either the daughter or the son of one of these characters. And – you probably never thought you’d see their stories in print. Up till now they’ve been good for a guffaw a deer camp, or enlightening the kids after Thanksgiving supper. Imagine being able to pick up a copy of, near as dammit, family history for a gift!

If you want a potful of genuine belly laughs buy The Lamoille Stories and try to limit yourself to one story before shutting off the light. You can laugh till the full moon and then give the book to your sister. Shake out the crumbs first, will you?

The Lamoille Stories, is available at most every bookstore around. You can find it, easy. Also, keep your eyes open and on this paper, you can meet the author as he appears here and there locally promoting the book, maybe get your copy signed, too.

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