The Hair of Harold Roux, a book by Thomas Williams, is the most consistently interesting book I have ever read. It puts forth first and foremost characters who are so alive and surprising they never lose their interest. They vibrate whether crude or kindly through their times. Just as you think you have met a character whose reality can be matched by no other along comes another one human and real beyond imagination. Thomas Williams has the classic skill of brevity and simplicity. His style is the style of his characters whose speech lives. Williams is a master of living language. He has committed the cardinal sin of twentieth century writers: he has touched ordinary life and lived to write honestly about it. His naturalism is a beautiful blend of joy and suffering. In simple language, which he imbues with the fountain of imagination, his everyman, Aaron Benham (Allard Benson), proceeds through the tangle of his naturalistic universe whether on a motorcyle or within the vehicle of his dark nostalgia. There's nothing out there quite like it. Humility and serenity blend exquisitely with poetic anguish. There is much that I could say, for it is one of my favorite books. In a sorry time when literature has become blind and black and careless of understanding this book and other of Thomas Williams' books become like a warm campfire in a dark and terrible woods. The joy in his books reminds me of the Joy that used to be such as in Beethoven's monument (I'm serious), and the anguish haunting the shadows of his characters is the anguish of war, dismemberment, rage, failure, loneliness, loss. When I open this book, I know I can open it at any time and any page, I think to myself--yes, finally.