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Cold Mountain

by

Cold Mountain Cover

ISBN13: 9780871136794
ISBN10: 0871136791
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Synopsis:

Cold Mountain is an extraordinary novel about a soldiers perilous journey back to his beloved at the end of the Civil War. At once a magnificent love story and a harrowing account of one mans long walk home, Cold Mountain introduces a stunning new talent in American literature.

Based on local history and family stories passed down by the authors great-great-grandfather, Cold Mountain is the tale of a wounded soldier, Inman, who walks away from the ravages of the war and back home to his prewar sweetheart, Ada. Inmans odyssey through the devastated landscape of the soon-to-be-defeated South interweaves with Adas struggle to revive her fathers farm, with the help of an intrepid young drifter named Ruby. As their long-separated lives begin to converge at the close of the war, Inman and Ada confront the vastly transformed world theyve been delivered.

Charles Frazier reveals marked insight into mans relationship to the land and the dangers of solitude. He also shares with the great nineteenth century novelists a keen observation of a society undergoing change. Cold Mountain re-creates a world gone by that speaks eloquently to our time.

Synopsis:

Cold Mountain is an extraordinary novel about a soldiers perilous journey back to his beloved at the end of the Civil War. At once a magnificent love story and a harrowing account of one mans long walk home, Cold Mountain introduces a stunning new talent in American literature.

Based on local history and family stories passed down by the authors great-great-grandfather, Cold Mountain is the tale of a wounded soldier, Inman, who walks away from the ravages of the war and back home to his prewar sweetheart, Ada. Inmans odyssey through the devastated landscape of the soon-to-be-defeated South interweaves with Adas struggle to revive her fathers farm, with the help of an intrepid young drifter named Ruby. As their long-separated lives begin to converge at the close of the war, Inman and Ada confront the vastly transformed world theyve been delivered.

Charles Frazier reveals marked insight into mans relationship to the land and the dangers of solitude. He also shares with the great nineteenth century novelists a keen observation of a society undergoing change. Cold Mountain re-creates a world gone by that speaks eloquently to our time.

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Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

Barbara Stewart, January 1, 2012 (view all comments by Barbara Stewart)
Did not expect to like this book. His writing moved me.
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aflatten, May 1, 2009 (view all comments by aflatten)
Fictitious novels may not provide precise information about an event or era, but are a great source to examine larger ideas. Charles Frazier confronts the morality of war in his novel, Cold Mountain, by using imagery and juxtaposition. Readers journey along with Inman as he pursues his way home and makes numerous moral decisions.
Cold Mountain’s setting takes place in the mountainous terrain of the south. The central character, Inman, suffers from a battle wound at the end of the Civil War, but leaves the hospital. He traverses back to his home on Cold Mountain and to his love, Ada. Meanwhile, Ada and her new acquaintance Ruby work to restore her neglected farm. Ada and Ruby are one example of how the role of women alters during wartime. Ada, an educated, well-mannered and beautiful woman, is not accustomed to difficult manual labor. However, she soon adjusts to her new responsibilities. Like Ada, Inman is unaccustomed to making critical decisions, but soon acquires a moral judgment in times of fighting and death.
Along the journey home, Inman is faced with numerous moral questions that define his character. First, he comes upon Veasey, a preacher who had sexual relations with a young woman. Inman stops Veasey from throwing the girl off a cliff and prepares to shoot him. At the last moment, Veasey “turned his face up and Inman could see that his cheeks were shining with tears… Inman relented and only struck the man a mid-force blow across the cheekbone” (113-114). Inman sympathizes with Veasey because Veasey feels sorry for his wrongdoings. Through this act, Inman reveals his belief of giving people second chances. Later, he stays with a single woman who offers her hospitality if he helps butcher her pig. When the Home Guard steals the hog, her only source of food, Inman kills the men and returns the pig to her. After helping the woman butcher her pig, Inman kindly helps other strangers along his walk home. He assists an older man move his dead bull, helps bury a woman’s dead daughter, and offers money to whomever gives him food. Even though Inman has good intentions, his often violent acts are accepted in the juxtaposed world he lives in.
Fighting in the war caused Inman to feel indifferent to death. After the Home Guard kills Veasey, Inman continues along the same trail unmoved by what just happened. The Home Guard does not patrol for lawbreakers, but rather hunts and kills Confederate deserters. After a man named Junior reports Inman to the Home Guard and they almost kill him, Inman returns to Junior for revenge. He “stepped to Junior and struck him across the ear with the barrel of the LeMat’s and then clubbed at him with the butt until he lay flat on his back” (234). This decision to get revenge would not be considered moral, but it happened during wartime and is consequentially viewed as a justifiable act. Although Inman makes regrettable choices, he separates himself from other murderers by refusing to shoot a boy.
War alters the morality of killing people, transforming death into a daily occurrence. Even after the countless times Inman killed men in war, he cannot kill adolescents. Inman offers to let the cornered boy leave, but the boy obstinately declines Inman’s offer. Out of frustration that he might be forced to kill the young Home Guard rider, Inman says, “Damn it. I’m looking for a way not to kill you” (443). Inman’s refusal to kill children demonstrates his strong morality and ability to act correctly even after the war establishes the mindset to kill all enemies.
Charles Frazier utilizes imagery and juxtaposition successfully when portraying his ideas about morality. The gory deaths Inman witnesses illustrate how grotesque and morally wrong it is to kill someone. Together, imagery and the juxtaposition of war convey Frazier’s message: morals are crucial in making the correct choice. Any reader who enjoys wild adventures, history related tales, or subtle romance should consider walking through the chapters in Cold Mountain with Inman.
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mcharrison, April 30, 2009 (view all comments by mcharrison)
Cold Mountain, by Charles Frazier, is a unique blend of three classic archetypes of literature. At the heart of the plot is a heroic journey set to the backdrop of the Civil War south. At the same time it is the story of spiritual and emotional growth, or coming of age. Lastly, it is a struggle between noble good and cowardly evil which builds to a climactic ending of the novel. The combination of these three archetypes is a novel that encompasses violence, beauty, war, romance, hate, and compassion, all while keeping the story engaging and the settings vivid.
The novel switches focus back and forth between Inman, a young man who is struggling to return home after being wounded at the battle of Petersburg, and his sweetheart Ada who awaits him on his native Cold Mountain. Frazier’s description of the ravaged lands that Inman travels through, as well as, his panoramic portrayal of Cold Mountain helps the reader picture the many settings of the novel and to comprehend what it would have been like to live during such a turbulent period of American history. Inman describes the landscape around Cold Mountain this way as he nears home,
“Shadows slid down the slopes of the nearest line of ridges, falling into the valley as if draining into a vast pool of dark under the ground….. You could look out across that folded landscape and every sense you had told only that this was all the world there was.”(280)
As opposed to the landscape that Inman traveled through up to this point, these rugged, beautiful, mountains are the closest he has felt to home and peace. Prior to his arrival back in the mountains, Inman had described the places he had traveled through in ways such as “It was a foul region, planned off flat except where there were raw gullies cut deep in the red clay.”(64) The variety of drastically different settings that Frazier presents in the novel help keep the plot vibrant and alive for the reader as they track Inman along his journey.
The novel encompasses three archetypes of literature, the heroic journey, the struggle between good and evil, and coming of age. The journey Inman takes across the south is comparable to Homer’s The Odyssey in its plethora of experiences and obstacles. Inman encounters different people at every turn, some helpful and some not so much. He falls in with a very ungodly preacher for a time, fights off vicious dogs and just as vicious people, and is also helped by many unique characters including gypsies and a solitary old goat herder. Although it may not have taken Inman ten years to return home as it did for Odysseus, Frazier does manage to bring about a Homeric feel to Inman’s journey.
Never along his entire journey, though, does Inman let hardship chip away at his iron will or tendency to do good. In the face of many evils Inman always follows his conscience and defends the side of justice and honor, while many around him do not. This stalwart benevolence goes in opposition to the actions of Inman’s largest threat along his journey, the confederate Home Guard who prowl the landscape searching for deserters like him. These nasty characters represent all that is evil and cowardly in the world, as they haven’t been brave enough to actually fight in the war, but are perfectly willing to terrorize and murder innocent civilians along the countryside. This universal good represented in Inman and the bad seen in the Home Guard finally come head to head in the climax of the book, resulting in one last struggle by Inman to return to the normalcy of civilian life.
Finally, we witness an important change in Ada as she waits for Inman’s return. Originally a proper southern girl from Charleston, Ada begins the book naive and sheltered, and in a very precarious position as the lone owner of a farm which she has no experience in operating. With the friendship of Ruby, an independent young woman from the hills, not only does Ada learn to use her hands and run the farm, but she also begins to appreciate the natural beauty and cycles that are all around her on Cold Mountain. Ada’s growth as a person reflects the change seen in the country at the end of the war. Just as the South is no longer the place Ada remembers from her childhood, she is not the person from that past life.
In Cold Mountain, Frazier comments on solitude, war, and love and more. The novel exemplifies the brutality of war along with the loneliness of prolonged solitude. Ada and Inman’s reunion near the end of the book features deep internal emotions that may at first seem shallow, but are truly the results of years of separation. Frazier manages to convey deep emotions with very little description into what the characters are feeling. Their actions alone carry the emotional ideas he is trying to express. While this is technically historical fiction, a reader need not have any background knowledge of the Civil War in order to understand and enjoy this novel. The setting and tone of the novel also make it very appealing to any Civil War enthusiast as well. It features many accurate portrayals and allusions to this period, one of which is Inman’s trusted LeMat revolver, a unique weapon to the Confederate Army.
The overall appeal of Charles Frazier’s Cold Mountain derives from the novel’s unique combination of literary archetypes. Not only does this novel include an epic journey and a fight between good and evil, it also includes a tale of emotional growth, all wrapped inside a passionate love story. This book will keep anyone engaged and emotionally attached, and will satisfy both a romantic and a history enthusiast alike. Truly, what more could a reader ask for?
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780871136794
Author:
Frazier, Charles
Publisher:
Atlantic Monthly Press
Author:
Frazier, Charles
Location:
New York :
Subject:
Historical
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
History
Subject:
United states
Subject:
Historical - General
Subject:
Fantasy - Contemporary
Subject:
Love stories
Subject:
United States History Civil War, 1861-1865 Fiction.
Subject:
War & Military
Subject:
United States - History - Civil War, 1861-
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Number:
1st ed.
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Series Volume:
1993/1
Publication Date:
19970531
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 23 oz

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Cold Mountain Used Hardcover
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Product details 368 pages Atlantic Monthly Press - English 9780871136794 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
Cold Mountain is an extraordinary novel about a soldiers perilous journey back to his beloved at the end of the Civil War. At once a magnificent love story and a harrowing account of one mans long walk home, Cold Mountain introduces a stunning new talent in American literature.

Based on local history and family stories passed down by the authors great-great-grandfather, Cold Mountain is the tale of a wounded soldier, Inman, who walks away from the ravages of the war and back home to his prewar sweetheart, Ada. Inmans odyssey through the devastated landscape of the soon-to-be-defeated South interweaves with Adas struggle to revive her fathers farm, with the help of an intrepid young drifter named Ruby. As their long-separated lives begin to converge at the close of the war, Inman and Ada confront the vastly transformed world theyve been delivered.

Charles Frazier reveals marked insight into mans relationship to the land and the dangers of solitude. He also shares with the great nineteenth century novelists a keen observation of a society undergoing change. Cold Mountain re-creates a world gone by that speaks eloquently to our time.

"Synopsis" by ,
Cold Mountain is an extraordinary novel about a soldiers perilous journey back to his beloved at the end of the Civil War. At once a magnificent love story and a harrowing account of one mans long walk home, Cold Mountain introduces a stunning new talent in American literature.

Based on local history and family stories passed down by the authors great-great-grandfather, Cold Mountain is the tale of a wounded soldier, Inman, who walks away from the ravages of the war and back home to his prewar sweetheart, Ada. Inmans odyssey through the devastated landscape of the soon-to-be-defeated South interweaves with Adas struggle to revive her fathers farm, with the help of an intrepid young drifter named Ruby. As their long-separated lives begin to converge at the close of the war, Inman and Ada confront the vastly transformed world theyve been delivered.

Charles Frazier reveals marked insight into mans relationship to the land and the dangers of solitude. He also shares with the great nineteenth century novelists a keen observation of a society undergoing change. Cold Mountain re-creates a world gone by that speaks eloquently to our time.

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