Books & Recordings

American Writing Awards Winner – 2022

Obsidian Mirth, the most recent novel by EnRoute author Thom Brucie, was named the
winner of the 2022 American Book Award in fiction. The Before Columbus Foundation presents the annual awards to recognize “outstanding literary achievement from the entire spectrum of America’s diverse literary community.”

Review from the American Writing Awards:
“Obsidian Mirth is truly a masterful piece of work as it puts on full display the level of love needed to persist through a hellish diagnosis. The story’s beautiful prose compliments Brucie’s meticulous attention to detail elevating each page and gripping the reader’s attention. He writes like a well-versed psychologist or a spiritual leader taking the reader on a heart-wrenching quest through a plotline filled with a series of unexpected events centered around a compelling cast of unforgettable characters. Obsidian Mirth is a tortuous romance from an author at the top of his game.”

The Prairies Book Review:
“Sharply observed relationships, deft exploration of mental illness, authentic characters, and a touch of painful reality make Brucie’s nuanced novel, Obsidian Mirth, a sure bet.Brucie creates a remarkably original storywhich delves into complex issues—the residual effects of one person’s mental illness on family and friends, acceptance of imperfect partners, and what it means to love truly and wholly. This nuanced story offers new perspectives about mental illness while emphasizing the value and complexity of love, acceptance, understanding, and forgiveness.”

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           CATHOLIC FICTION  –  2023 



   Author Thom Brucie takes the reader on a psycho-social spiritual journey in which the seventeen-year-old protagonist, a Franciscan seminarian, Morgan O’Bryan, searches for his place in the world as he is torn between a celibate life dedicated to God and the true love that exists in his heart. Children of Slate attracts and keeps readers’ attention not with its plot, but with its interesting array of characters. Brucie constructs a cast of characters who are charmingly diabolic in their compliment of the protagonist during his quest for enlightenment.

   Children of Slate is a story of life’s many complications:  of sin and lust, and friendship and love and the forgiving grace of God. In the pages of this work, some of the moist controversial and talked about social issues facing mankind and the Church in the world today are tackled head-on. Brucie pulls no punches. It is a thought provoking and absorbing read from start to finish.
                                                       –American Book Awards

“In Children of Slate, Thom Brucie explores belief, reason, and sensuality in a way that I have not seen before. Rather than pitting these qualities against each other. Brucie interweaves them convincingly in the lives and minds of his characters. The result? an honest exploration of faith. A thought provoking read.”                                                                                      –Mark Stokes, Founder-Holistic Storyteller.

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“As muc
h nouveau roman as a war novel, Thom Brucie’s Weapons of Cain invites memory  to take a seat at the table of the long twentieth century—and then feast from the ambiguous trough of personal narrative. Weapons is both a tale and a novel, unpacking the rough intertwine of personal and historical memory in order to dissolve the membranes of official American culture. O’Brien pushed beyond Hemingway, and Brucie pushes beyond O’Brien. This is the book as ambiguous weapon: fragmented chapters fly against shrapnel shards of ironic fortifications. This is Vietnam 2.0: the war novel you’ve never before read.”                                                                                                                               –Davis Schneiderman, multimedia artist and writer.

“Thom Brucie is a real American talent with a smoking American voice.  His writing is true, potent, and muscular.  Read his book, Weapons of Cain, now – thank me later.                   

            –Luis Alberto Urrea, 2005 Pulitzer Prize finalist and member of the
              Latino Literature Hall of Fame, best-selling author of 13 books,
              including his award-winning novel, Into the Beautiful North.

View the book trailer:  Weapons of Cain           

Read some Reviews

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“The poems i
n Moments Around The Campfire With A Vietnam Vet  flow with an incredible narrative voice spoken from the recollected perspective of a ghost poet with a precise eye for detail, a poet who carries you along the beautiful waterfall of misery with your eyes wide open and your heart in your throat. Each poem commands the page, daring the reader to deny its verity and weight, forbidding the reader to dismiss the small totals of Vietnam we still don’t speak about.  Wow! These poems took my breath away.”                                                                               –Lana Maht Wiggins, University of Louisiana; author of Notes From Refuge, Felix Voorhies Award Winner.

“Moments Around The Campfire With A Vietnam Vet is full of poignant poems about various characters who fought in the Vietnam War. Thom Brucie. . .makes us feel as though we were actually invited into the camp circle to hear the stories of these people, to know their longings and aspirations and disappointments. This is one of the best books of war poems I’ve ever read. I promise, you won’t be able to put it down.”            –Maria Mazziotti Gillan, Binghamton University; American Book Award winner for All That Lies Between Us.

View the book trailer:  Moments Around The Campfire        

Read a review 

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Still Water Front Cover (new)166x250
“These extrao
rdinarily moving stories explore the intricacies of human suffering and joy. Thom Brucie writes with rare power and insight; his lyrical descriptions echo in the heart and mind of the reader.”   
     –Libby Tucker, author of Campus Legends, Haunted Halls, and  Children’s Folklore: A Handbook.

“Brucie tells the stories of ordinary people caught in the struggles of those small heroic moments we all must face when action demands courage and courage demands faith.”
      –International Journal of Existential Literature

View the book trailer
:  Still Waters                   

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Apprentice Lessons (163x250)
“Part elegy and part extended ars poetica, Thom Brucie’s Apprentice Lessons participates in that ongoing dialogue between poetry and the world around it, between words and the spaces they inhabit. For example, in the poem “Legacy,” Brucie wonders (and fears) “for those who sleep / under the roofs I built.” Will they be dry and, by extension, safe? Carpentry, in other words, assumes a much broader metaphorical resonance, ushering us back to the very origins of the word poet – one who makes.”                                                             
–Chad Davidson, author of From The Fire Hills, The Last Predicta, and Consolation Miracle.

“Poetry at its root is to make. So poets, like all craftsmen, have traditionally learned their trade in the workshop of a master. Thom Brucie’s Apprentice Lessons returns us to these origins in an arresting series of elegies and lyric tributes to Virgil McLynn, the master carpenter to whom he apprenticed in his youth. Brucie finds, in the recollections of his teacher, lessons that serve him as a builder of words, as well as of wood, in poems that underscore the humanity of any trade well plied. He learns “you cannot straighten a bent nail/with one swing; / you correct one flaw and / move to the next,” an image, like so many here, suggestive of how to remedy a life and revise the art we hope to make of it. Brucie succeeds in Apprentice Lessons with accomplished poetic craft and the lived clarity that “the aim of the eye is truth… / and caution reminds us / that we do not always stand plumb.”                                                                                                        –Jim Tolan, author of Mass of the Forgotten and Red Walls.

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 Read a Review
Read the Author’s Interview Bio – On Writing

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