Katherine East, July 14, 2012 (view all comments by Katherine East)
A wonderful tale of a family and their dogs. The thing I love about this book is the detailed way in which the author describes every detail. You can taste, hear, smell and touch the dogs, the forest, the farm - everything in the book. The story is enchanting and heartbreaking. I am a dog lover, and enjoyed the details about the dog's relationship with Edgar and his family. The reader will be cheering for Edgar to succeed, and yet as we all know, life does not always have happy endings, even in fiction.
AURORA PRIBRAM-JONES, January 3, 2012 (view all comments by AURORA PRIBRAM-JONES)
I picked this up out of our stacks of to-be-read Indie-spensible titles, thinking I would take it in small sips. I gulped this sucker down, though, caught up in the intricacies of communication and relationship inside. Verbal and non-verbal communication tangled with human and non-human character, and I was swept up, genuinely swept up in the tale of the family, which hasn't happened to me in quite some time. It was a jewel, the best book I read this year, and a great example of why we belong to Indie-spensible. Great fiction, wonderful sketches of personality and mind, and an extra treat for a girl raised by dogs and living in a people world as a grown up.
Lynn in Pasadena, January 3, 2012 (view all comments by Lynn in Pasadena)
This book explored the amazing range of relationships - relationships among family and strangers but especially relationships with the canines that inhabit what we consider our world. It was quite a journey.
The perfect book to curl up with on a blustery afternoon, The Story of Edgar Sawtelle is a not-so-simple tale of a Wisconsin boy and his dogs. An eloquent exploration of both inner and outer landscapes, this novel will wind about your psyche and will haunt you long after the last page.
by Mary Jo
by Richard Russo, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Empire Falls,
"I doubt we'll see a finer literary debut this year than The Story of Edgar Sawtelle. David Wroblewski's got storytelling talent to burn and a big, generous heart to go with it."
by Stephen King,
"I flat-out loved The Story of Edgar Sawtelle.... Wonderful, mysterious, long and satisfying.... I don't re-read many books, because life is too short. I will be re-reading this one."
by Kirkus Reviews (starred review),
"A stately, wonderfully written debut novel... [Wroblewski] takes an intense interest in his characters; takes pains to invest emotion and rough understanding in them; and sets them in motion with graceful language... a boon for dog lovers, and for fans of storytelling that eschews flash. Highly recommended."
by Library Journal (starred review),
"An excruciatingly captivating read... Ultimately liberating, though tragic and heart-wrenching, this book is unforgettable."
by Dalia Sofer, bestselling author of The Septembers of Shiraz,
"Edgar Sawtelle is a boy without a voice, but his world, populated by the dogs his family breeds, is anything but silent. This is a remarkable story about the language of friendship — a language that transcends words."
by Entertainment Weekly,
"A good old-fashioned coming-of-age yarn. Grade: A"
This riveting saga of an American family captures the deep and ancient alliance between humans and dogs, and the power of fate through one boy's epic journey into the wild.
by Harper Collins,
The extraordinary debut novel that became a modern classic
Born mute, speaking only in sign, Edgar Sawtelle leads an idyllic life with his parents on their farm in remote northern Wisconsin. For generations, the Sawtelles have raised and trained a fictional breed of dog whose remarkable gift for companionship is epitomized by Almondine, Edgar's lifelong friend and ally. Edgar seems poised to carry on his family's traditions, but when catastrophe strikes, he finds his once-peaceful home engulfed in turmoil.
Forced to flee into the vast wilderness lying beyond the Sawtelle farm, Edgar comes of age in the wild, fighting for his survival and that of the three yearling dogs who accompany him, until the day he is forced to choose between leaving forever or returning home to confront the mysteries he has left unsolved.
Filled with breathtaking scenes—the elemental north woods, the sweep of seasons, an iconic American barn, a fateful vision rendered in the falling rain—The Story of Edgar Sawtelle is a meditation on the limits of language and what lies beyond, a brilliantly inventive retelling of an ancient story, and an epic tale of devotion, betrayal, and courage in the American heartland.
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