Kent Haruf
Our Souls at Night

Our Souls at Night

I can't believe I didn't read this book years ago, because now that I've read it, it reminds me so much of my all-time faves Wallace Stegner, Wendell Berry, and Marilynne Robinson. I don't want to say too much, but I found this up-close look at an unlikely relationship between two long-time acquaintances in small-town Colorado completely absorbing, and Haruf hits just the right tone with his light touch. Listen to me recommend this book in Episode 84 of What Should I Read Next? to Shawn Smucker. This is definitely one of those books where the flap copy doesn't do it justice. This was my first Haruf novel, and I'll be reading more.

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Plainsong

Plainsong

From the publisher: "In the small town of Holt, Colorado, a high school teacher is confronted with raising his two boys alone after their mother retreats first to the bedroom, then altogether. A teenage girl—her father long since disappeared, her mother unwilling to have her in the house—is pregnant, alone herself, with nowhere to go. And out in the country, two brothers, elderly bachelors, work the family homestead, the only world they've ever known. From these unsettled lives emerges a vision of life, and of the town and landscape that bind them together—their fates somehow overcoming the powerful circumstances of place and station, their confusion, curiosity, dignity and humor intact and resonant. As the milieu widens to embrace fully four generations, Kent Haruf displays an emotional and aesthetic authority to rival the past masters of a classic American tradition."

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Where You Once Belonged

Where You Once Belonged

Author:

I've been working my way through Kent Haruf's back catalog and enjoying it so much—if that's the right word. It took me a while to finally read Haruf, but I'm so glad I did: he's an excellent choice for readers who love Wallace Stegner, Wendell Berry, and Marilynne Robinson, as I do. In <em>Where You Once Belonged</em>, Haruf tells of "a small-town hero who is dealt an enviable hand--and cheats with all of the cards."

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The Tie That Binds

The Tie That Binds

Author:

I've been working my way through Kent Haruf's back catalog and enjoying it so much—if that's the right word. It took me a while to finally read Haruf, but I'm so glad I did: he's an excellent choice for readers who love Wallace Stegner, Wendell Berry, and Marilynne Robinson, as I do. From the publisher: "Eighty-year-old Edith Goodnough lies in a hospital bed, IV taped to the back of her hand, police officer at her door. She is charged with murder. The clues: a sack of chicken feed slit with a knife, a milky-eyed dog tied outdoors one cold afternoon. The motives: the brutal business of farming and a family code of ethics as unforgiving as the winter prairie itself. Here, Kent Haruf delivers the sweeping tale of a woman of the American High Plains, as told by her neighbor, Sanders Roscoe. Here is the story of a woman who sacrifices her happiness in the name of family--and then, in one gesture, reclaims her freedom."

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