- STAFF PICKS
- GIFTS + GIFT CARDS
- SELL BOOKS
- FIND A STORE
New Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
More copies of this ISBN
This title in other editions
Other titles in the Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics series:
The Song of the Lark (Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics)by Willa Cather
Synopses & Reviews
"The time will come when she will be ranked above Hemingway." --Leon Edel
In this powerful portrait of the self-making of an artist, Willa Cather created one of her most extraordinary heroines. Thea Kronborg, a minister's daughter in a provincial Colorado town, seems destined from childhood for a place in the wider world. But as her path to the world stage leads her ever farther from the humble town she can't forget and from the man she can't afford to love, Thea learns that her exceptional musical talent and fierce ambition are not enough.
It is in the solitude of a tiny rock chamber high in the side of an Arizona cliff--"a cleft in the heart of the world"--that Thea comes face to face with her own dreams and desires, stripped clean by the haunting purity of the ruined cliff dwellings and inspired by the whisperings of their ancient dust. Here she finds the courage to seize her future and to use her gifts to catch "the shining, elusive element that is life itself--life hurrying past us and running away, too strong to stop, too sweet to lose." In prose as shimmering and piercingly true as the light in a desert canyon, Cather takes us into the heart of a woman coming to know her deepest self.
Beautiful and lyrical, this third novel by Willa Cather follows the life of Thea Kronberg from her childhood in 19th-century Nebraska to her career as a renowned opera singer.
Since the time of its publication in 1915, this novel had captivated readers with its sharp observations, shimmering descriptions, sly humor, and its provocative heroine--a feisty young woman who strives to create her own destiny, regardless of social restrictions.
Thea Konberg is a Scandinavian-American singer who rises from a one-story Colorado town to the Metropolitan Opera House. Along the way she struggles with the tension between nurturing personal vitality and achieving artistic sublimity. The enervated artist seeks solace in an isolated desert canyon where she experiences the epiphany that will transform her vision and art. As is characteristic in Cather's work, the western landscape both represents the inner lives of characters and regenerates their tired imaginations.
About the Author
Born in Virginia in 1873 and raised on a Nebraska ranch, Willa Cather is known for her beautifully evocative short stories and novels about the American West. Cather became the managing editor for McClure’s Magazine in 1906 and lived for forty years in New York City with her companion Edith Lewis. In 1922 Cather won the Pulitzer Prize for One of Ours, the story of a Western boy in World War I. In 1933 she was awarded the Prix Femina Americaine “for distinguished literary accomplishments.” She died in 1947.
Photo: AKG London
What Our Readers Are Saying
Other books you might like