Plainsong

Plainsong

Paperback Vintage Contemporaries

By (author) Kent Haruf

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  • Publisher: Vintage Books
  • Format: Paperback | 301 pages
  • Dimensions: 132mm x 203mm x 23mm | 249g
  • Publication date: 22 August 2000
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0375705856
  • ISBN 13: 9780375705854
  • Sales rank: 39,290

Product description

" Ambitious, but never seeming so, Kent Haruf reveals a whole community as he interweaves the stories of a pregnant high school girl, a lonely teacher, a pair of boys abandoned by their mother, and a couple of crusty bachelor farmers. From simple elements, Haruf achieves a novel of wisdom and grace--a narrative that builds in strength and feeling until, as in a choral chant, the voices in the book surround, transport, and lift the reader off the ground." -FROM THE CITATION FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD

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Author information

Kent Haruf's honors include a Whiting Foundation Award, a Stegner Award, a Frank Waters Award, and a special citation from the PEN/Hemingway Foundation. His 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.

Review quote

" A novel so foursquare, so delicate and lovely . . . it has the power to exalt the reader." --"The New York Times Book Review" " Resonant and meaningful . . . . A song of praise in honor of the lives it chronicles [and] a story about people's ability to adapt and redeem themselves, to heal the wounds of isolation by moving, gropingly and imperfectly, toward community." --Richard Tillinghast, "The Washington Post Book World" " A compelling and compassionate novel. . . . [With] his sheer assurance as a storyteller, [Mr. Haruf] has conjured up an entire community, and ineluctably immersed the reader in its dramas." --Michiko Kakutani, "The New York Times" " A work as flawlessly unified as a short story by Poe or Chekhov." --Jon Hassler, "Chicago Tribune" " Haunting, virtuosic, inimitable." --Sarah Saffian, "San Francisco Chronicle" " If the novelist invents a world, then Mr. Haruf has shaped a place of enormous goodness... The story itself--spare, unsentimental, rooted in action--honors the values of the community it describes." --Lisa Michaels, " A moving look at our capacity for both pointless cruelty and simple decency, our ability to walk out of the wreckage of one family and build a stronger one where that one used to stand." --Jeff Giles, "Newsweek" " A work as flawlessly unified as a short story by Poe or Chekhov." --Jon Hassler, "Chicago Tribune"

Flap copy

"Ambitious, but never seeming so, Kent Haruf reveals a whole community as he interweaves the stories of a pregnant high school girl, a lonely teacher, a pair of boys abandoned by their mother, and a couple of crusty bachelor farmers. From simple elements, Haruf achieves a novel of wisdom and grace--a narrative that builds in strength and feeling until, as in a choral chant, the voices in the book surround, transport, and lift the reader off the ground." -FROM THE CITATION FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD