Spectator Bird Author:Wallace Stegner Joe Allston is a retired literary agent whose parents and only son are dead, and who feels that he has been a mere spectator through life. Then a postcard from a friend causes him to return to the journals of a trip he took to his mother's birthplace to search for his roots; memories of that journey reveal that he is not quite spectator eno... more »ugh. Winner of the National Book Award.« less
Reads like an autobiography but is fiction. The main story deals with an older man (and his wife) coping with the brutal realities of old age. The story within the story is a flashback - decades earlier - to a Denmark trip when they lived with a countess and slowly learned the bizarre secrets of her family.