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Eventideby Kent Haruf
"This hardscrabble story kicks up a dust cloud of melancholy that will sting even the most hardened readers' eyes....Haruf never missteps, and I wish his books were required reading for anyone learning to write. Not that everyone should sound like him, of course, but his prose serves as a corrective to the super-hip, self-consciously clever storytelling that lures too many writers onto the rocks..." Ron Charles, The Christian Science Monitor (read the entire Christian Science Monitor review)
Synopses & Reviews
National Book Award nominee Kent Haruf returns with the successor to his acclaimed, bestselling, and, one must add, truly beloved novel Plainsong. Eventide brings back several characters from the earlier book — the McPheron brothers, Victoria and her daughter, Katie — as well as introducing new ones, in a tale that centers around the beautiful but demanding Colorado landscape. Bachelor Raymond McPheron struggles to pick up the pieces of his life after his brother, Harold, is killed. But that's only the beginning of an intricate web of tangled lives and memorable, understated characters. Haruf's novels are never long on plot; the real appeal of his writing is in his empathy for his characters, where he displays a subtlety and generosity of spirit that puts many other writers to shame. Small wonder that Haruf has developed such a devoted following ? novels like his are a rarity. Eventide is an uncommonly rich story that yearns to be shared. Peter, Powells.com
One of the most beloved novels in recent years, Plainsong was a best-seller from coast to coast — and now Kent Haruf returns to the High Plains community of Holt, Colorado, with a story of even more masterful authority.
When the McPheron brothers see Victoria Roubideaux, the single mother they'd taken in, move from their ranch to begin college, an emptiness opens before them — and for many other townspeople it also promises to be a long, hard winter. A young boy living alone with his grandfather helps out a neighbor whose husband, off in Alaska, suddenly isn't coming home, leaving her to raise their two daughters. At school the children of a disabled couple suffer indignities that their parents know all too well in their own lives, with only a social worker to look after them and a violent relative to endanger them further. But in a small town a great many people encounter one another frequently, often surprisingly, and destinies soon become entwined — for good and for ill — as they confront events that sorely test the limits of their resilience and means, with no refuge available except what their own character and that of others afford them.
Spring eventually does reach across the land, and how the people of Eventide get there makes for an engrossing, profoundly moving novel rich in the wisdom, humor, and humanity for which Kent Haruf is justly acclaimed.
"Haruf sings the second verse of his moving hymn to life on America's great plains....Melancholy truths set to gorgeous melody." Kirkus Reviews
"Haruf's follow-up to the critically acclaimed and bestselling Plainsong is as lovely and accomplished as its predecessor....
"Through Haruf's crisp, clean prose, we feel the pain of Holt's citizens as they struggle to survive life with hope and dignity. No easy answers here, just honest storytelling that is compelling and rings true." Library Journal
"Mr. Haruf makes us care about these plain-spoken, small town folks without ever resorting to sentimentality or clichés. Instead, he uses their own language...to capture the mood and mores of the town." Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
"In creating a place whose people are tethered to each other by history and emotion as much as place, Haruf's work is now competing with Faulkner's Mississippi, Sherwood Anderon's Midwest, and Wallace Stegner's northern California." Chicago Sun-Times
"Masterful....A full and satisfying novel complete unto itself [that] might be even more emotionally powerful than its predecessor." Cleveland Plain Dealer
"[B]leak, compassionate....It's rare that such slow, deliberate prose is this highly charged, but Haruf's writing draws power from his sense of character — its limitations and its possibilities — and how it propels action." The New Yorker
About the Author
Kent Haruf's honors include a Whiting Foundation Award and a special citation from the PEN/Hemingway Foundation. His most recent novel, Plainsong, won the Mountains & Plains Booksellers Award and was a finalist for the National Book Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and the New Yorker Book Award. He lives with his wife, Cathy, in his native Colorado.
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