MN Reads: "Last of the Better Days Ahead" by Charlie Parr
"I made these stories up." Charlie Parr makes it clear from the very beginning that his new book Last of the Better Days Ahead is a work of fiction, but these stories are still laden with truth. "Everything is a mixture," says Parr. "You start with something you know and write towards something you don't know."
The book is a companion to the singer/songwriter's 2021 album of the same name. For Parr, the book was a permission slip to finish his thoughts. "I always wanted to see what would happen if I didn't carve away all the non-song bits." And during the writing of these stories, time was in abundance. "I ended up writing a lot more than I usually do," says Parr of his writing time during the pandemic. "Before the pandemic I was doing over 270 shows a year, so you had to write on the road." With time on his hands, Parr made a habit of waking up, grabbing coffee, and setting to work.
Where can people pick up the book? "I have them in my van," says Parr. If you don't see Charlie in his van, the book can be found at various independent bookstores such as Zenith Bookstore in Duluth as well as on Parr's website.
Minnesota Reads is produced at The North 103.3 with funding provided in part by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.