About Lila and Theron
Lila and Theron is set in rural America and relates a personal story of love and sacrifice. Lila and Theron do not imagine themselves poor, nor do they covet what they don’t have. They are whole in themselves and on their land – in marked contrast to today’s victim culture of safe spaces and narcissism.
Bill Schubart grew up among farmers and loggers in Vermont’s rural Northeast Kingdom, where survival depended not on institutions but on family, neighbors, hand tools, and the bounty of wilderness. Lila and Theron are from a time and place where the arguments that divide us today would seem meaningless against the exigencies of kinship and survival.
Where to buy
Paperback (ISBN: 978-1-7355050-8-4) Magic Hill Press March, 2022
Ebook (ISBN: 978-1-6826135-6-6)
Audiobook (ISBN 978-1-7328890-6-4
Hard Cover originally published: June 6, 2017 by Charles Michael Publishing and dist. by Simon & Schuster (discontinued)
Currently available from Magic Hill Press
Available at local book shops throughout Vermont. Please support your local bookstore. They are fundamental to our Vermont communities.
“As I finished the last page and closed the book, I sat in silence for a good 15 or 20 minutes. Didn’t move, didn’t cry, didn’t think about anything…. I just stayed there with Lila and Theron until I was ready to move on…. I have never reacted to the end of a book that way.”
“I just finished the book. I’m on a train east of Syracuse and wondering whether any other passenger can see, hear, my crying. Lila and Theron is so full of quiet integrity, compassion, love, kindness, and accurate closeness to the land—I cannot even begin to praise it enough.”
“I have finished Lila and Theron and I must tell you that it was one of the most moving love stories I have ever read.”
“It’s a totally engrossing, tenderly-told story about a couple living the rural life in Vermont, covering the late 1800s and 3/4 of the 20th century. It is a page-turner, taking one deeply into the daily life of subsistence living. It felt like time-travel to me: when I ‘returned’ to the 21st century, I felt somewhat ashamed of our materialistic lives.”
“I can’t remember the last book I found so moving. I wept through the last twenty pages, overwhelmed by the beauty of the story and saddened to be at its end. It’s a quick read but takes you deep into the trenches of a well-weathered partnership and the ever-changing landscapes of VT. It’s a must-read.”
“I got to read Lila & Theron (in Vermont of course!) Wonderful – tears in my eyes with the ending. Your artistry is superb.”
-Your old friend, Pat Leahy
“I wanted you to know how much I’m enjoying your book, and how much I needed to read a story about decent people in relationship to one another…it has been my company for two nights running, and I am loving it.”
“Saw “Lila and Theron” on the table the other day and was drawn to the cover, the lovely illustration, soft colors and touchable surface of the dust jacket. Picked it up and read it in two nights. When they got to be 91 and 93 I knew what was coming and I did not want to finish it but of course I did. What a beautifully written, touching story of love and devotion without all the frills and distractions. Such a unique story. I would love to read more from Bill Schubart.”
“Your new novel arrived in the mail yesterday. I read it cover to cover last evening. The whole story–raw, intense and touching– stayed with me all day. The opening is an amazing piece of writing, a tour de force. Your descriptions and attention to detail are impressive. Chapter 30 brought me to tears.”
“We just finished “Lila and Theron”, reading it to each other at night and allowing ourselves only one chapter per evening, so we savored it. What a wonderfully poignant story of love and devotion. It had that bareness of “Our Town” and was a reminder of the frailty of life, and the small pleasures than ennoble it.”
-Ralph and L. B.
“What a beautiful Vermont love story. More important is that this literary gem is a magnificent way to learn about Vermont’s transition from the 19th to the 20th century. Thank you again for the book and writing this important story for understanding the character of Vermont.”
“Am writing this email through tears to which I was reduced by the very moving ending. What an incredible and well-crafted description of the difficult lives in the hills of Vermont. It felt 100% authentic in every detail. Thank you so much for a beautiful and moving love story warts and all. Congratulations on another literary triumph.”
“Wanted you to know how deeply affected I was by Lila and Theron. Finished it last night and sat on my sofa dissolved. Incredible heart in your book. And as spare of missteps as anything I’ve read… Thank you for a perfectly splendid literature which will be treasured by so many of us and future generations.”
"I have long considered Bill Schubart to be the wisest columnist in America. That same wisdom, deep life experience, and empathy come shining through on every page of his new novel, Lila and Theron. Full of joy, sadness, humor, and insight, Lila and Theron is a clear-eyed celebration of our almost boundless capacity, despite all our human frailties, to love both one another and the place we call home. Over the years, I have known many true and good country people like Lila and Theron, whom I have been proud and honored to call my friends. This is a beautiful book."
– Howard Frank Mosher, author of Marie Blythe and Walking to Gatlinburg.
"In a time all too rich with bombast and noise, Bill Schubart gives us a quiet tale of love, commitment, and utterly human interdependence—at once hard and graceful, plainspoken and eloquent. This is a romance that sidesteps shopworn clichés for sometimes painful truths, and leaves the reader moved, thoughtful, and mourning the rarity of such honesty. A small and lovely book."
– Archer Mayor, author of Presumption of Guilt (Joe Gunther Series)
"Through the eyes of Lila and Theron, Schubart manages to not only give us a great love story, but also an homage to an icy hardscrabble Vermont, and a portrait of an evolving rural America in the 20th century. This book is both heartbreaking, tender, and as real as a winter day. I loved it."
– Tom Christopher Greene, author of The Headmaster’s Wife