John Grisham A Painted House

ISBN 13 : 9780099416159

A Painted House

Note moyenne 3,66
( 62 294 avis fournis par GoodReads )
 
9780099416159: A Painted House

Spine creased, page edges tanned. Shipped from the U.K. All orders received before 3pm sent that weekday.

Les informations fournies dans la section « Synopsis » peuvent faire référence à une autre édition de ce titre.

Extrait :

Chapter I

The hill people and the Mexicans arrived on the same day. It was a Wednesday, early in September 1952. The Cardinals were five games behind the Dodgers with three weeks to go, and the season looked hopeless. The cotton, however, was waist-high to my father, over my head, and he and my grandfather could be heard before supper whispering words that were seldom heard. It could be a “good crop.”

They were farmers, hardworking men who embraced pessimism only when discussing the weather and the crops. There was too much sun, or too much rain, or the threat of floods in the lowlands, or the rising prices of seed and fertilizer, or the uncertainties of the markets. On the most perfect of days, my mother would quietly say to me, “Don’t worry. The men will find something to worry about.”

Pappy, my grandfather, was worried about the price for labor when we went searching for the hill people. They were paid for every hundred pounds of cotton they picked. The previous year, according to him, it was $1.50 per hundred. He’d already heard rumors that a farmer over in Lake City was offering $1.60.

This played heavily on his mind as we rode to town. He never talked when he drove, and this was because, according to my mother, not much of a driver herself, he was afraid of motorized vehicles. His truck was a 1939 Ford, and with the exception of our old John Deere tractor, it was our sole means of transportation. This was no particular problem except when we drove to church and my mother and grandmother were forced to sit snugly together up front in their Sunday best while my father and I rode in the back, engulfed in dust. Modern sedans were scarce in rural Arkansas.

Pappy drove thirty-seven miles per hour. His theory was that every automobile had a speed at which it ran most efficiently, and through some vaguely defined method he had determined that his old truck should go thirty-seven. My mother said (to me) that it was ridiculous.

She also said he and my father had once fought over whether the truck should go faster. But my father rarely drove it, and if I happened to be riding with him, he would level off at thirty-seven, out of respect for Pappy. My mother said she suspected he drove much faster when he was alone.

We turned onto Highway 135, and, as always, I watched Pappy carefully shift the gears — pressing slowly on the clutch, delicately prodding the stick shift on the steering column — until the truck reached its perfect speed. Then I leaned over to check the speedometer: thirty-seven. He smiled at me as if we both agreed that the truck belonged at that speed.

Highway 135 ran straight and flat through the farm country of the Arkansas Delta. On both sides as far as I could see, the fields were white with cotton. It was time for the harvest, a wonderful season for me because they turned out school for two months. For my grandfather, though, it was a time of endless worry.

On the right, at the Jordan place, we saw a group of Mexicans working in the field near the road. They were stooped at the waist, their cotton sacks draped behind them, their hands moving deftly through the stalks, tearing off the bolls. Pappy grunted. He didn’t like the Jordans because they were Methodists — and Cubs fans. Now that they already had workers in their fields, there was another reason to dislike them.

The distance from our farm to town was fewer than eight miles, but at thirty-seven miles an hour, the trip took twenty minutes. Always twenty minutes, even with little traffic. Pappy didn’t believe in passing slower vehicles in front of him. Of course, he was usually the slow one.

Near Black Oak, we caught up to a trailer filled to the top with snowy mounds of freshly picked cotton. A tarp covered the front half, and the Montgomery twins, who were my age, playfully bounced around in all that cotton until they saw us on the road below them. Then they stopped and waved. I waved back, but my grandfather did not. When he drove, he never waved or nodded at folks, and this was, my mother said, because he was afraid to take his hands from the wheel. She said people talked about him behind his back, saying he was rude and arrogant. Personally, I don’t think he cared how the gossip ran.

We followed the Montgomery trailer until it turned at the cotton gin. It was pulled by their old Massey Harris tractor, and driven by Frank, the eldest Montgomery boy, who had dropped out of school in the fifth grade and was considered by everyone at church to be headed for serious trouble.

Highway 135 became Main Street for the short stretch it took to negotiate Black Oak. We passed the Black Oak Baptist Church, one of the few times we’d pass without stopping for some type of service. Every store, shop, business, church, even the school, faced Main Street, and on Saturdays the traffic inched along, bumper to bumper, as the country folks flocked to town for their weekly shopping. But it was Wednesday, and when we got into town, we parked in front of Pop and Pearl Watson’s grocery store on Main.

I waited on the sidewalk until my grandfather nodded in the direction of the store. That was my cue to go inside and purchase a Tootsie Roll, on credit. It only cost a penny, but it was not a foregone conclusion that I would get one every trip to town. Occasionally, he wouldn’t nod, but I would enter the store anyway and loiter around the cash register long enough for Pearl to sneak me one, which always came with strict instructions not to tell my grandfather. She was afraid of him. Eli Chandler was a poor man, but he was intensely proud. He would starve to death before he took free food, which, on his list, included Tootsie Rolls. He would’ve beaten me with a stick if he knew I had accepted a piece of candy, so Pearl Watson had no trouble swearing me to secrecy.

But this time I got the nod. As always, Pearl was dusting the counter when I entered and gave her a stiff hug. Then I grabbed a Tootsie Roll from the jar next to the cash register. I signed the charge slip with great flair, and Pearl inspected my penmanship. “It’s getting better, Luke,” she said.

“Not bad for a seven-year-old,” I said. Because of my mother, I had been practicing my name in cursive writing for two years. “Where’s Pop?” I asked. They were the only adults I knew who insisted I call them by their “first” names, but only in the store when no one else was listening. If a customer walked in, then it was suddenly Mr. and Mrs. Watson. I told no one but my mother this, and she told me she was certain no other child held such privilege.

“In the back, putting up stock,” Pearl said. “Where’s your grandfather?”

It was Pearl’s calling in life to monitor the movements of the town’s population, so any question was usually answered with another.

“The Tea Shoppe, checking on the Mexicans. Can I go back there?” I was determined to outquestion her.

“Better not. Y’all using hill people, too?”
“If we can find them. Eli says they don’t come down like they used to. He also thinks they’re all half crazy. Where’s Champ?” Champ was the store’s ancient beagle, which never left Pop’s side.

Pearl grinned whenever I called my grandfather by his first name. She was about to ask me a question when the small bell clanged as the door opened and closed. A genuine Mexican walked in, alone and timid, as they all seemed to be at first. Pearl nodded politely at the new customer.

I shouted, “ Buenos días, señor!

The Mexican grinned and said sheepishly, “ Buenos días,” before disappearing into the back of the store.

“They’re good people,” Pearl said under her breath, as if the Mexican spoke English and might be offended by something nice she said. I bit into my Tootsie Roll and chewed it slowly while rewrapping and pocketing the other half.

“Eli’s worried about payin’ them too much,” I said. With a customer in the store, Pearl was suddenly busy again, dusting and straightening around the only cash register.

“Eli worries about everything,” she said.

“He’s a farmer.”

“Are you going to be a farmer?”

“No ma’am. A baseball player.”

“For the Cardinals?”

“Of course.”

Pearl hummed for a bit while I waited for the Mexican. I had some more Spanish I was anxious to try.

The old wooden shelves were bursting with fresh groceries. I loved the store during picking season because Pop filled it from floor to ceiling. The crops were coming in, and money was changing hands.

Pappy opened the door just wide enough to stick his head in. “Let’s go,” he said; then, “Howdy, Pearl.”

“Howdy, Eli,” she said as she patted my head and sent me away.

“Where are the Mexicans?” I asked Pappy when we were outside.

“Should be in later this afternoon.”

We got back in the truck and left town in the direction of Jonesboro, where my grandfather always found the hill people.

We parked on the shoulder of the highway, near the intersection of a gravel road. In Pappy’s opinion, it was the best spot in the county to catch the hill people. I wasn’t so sure. He’d been trying to hire some for a week with no results. We sat on the tailgate in the scorching sun in complete silence for half an hour before the first truck stopped. It was clean and had good tires. If we were lucky enough to find hill people, they would live with us for the next two months. We wanted folks who were neat, and the fact that this truck was much nicer than Pappy’s was a good sign.

“Afternoon,” Pappy said when the engine was turned off.

“Howdy,” said the driver.

“Where y’all from?” asked Pappy.

“Up north of Hardy.”

With no traffic around, my grandfather stood on the pavement, a pleasant expression on his face, taking in the truck and its contents. The driver and his wife sat in the cab with a small girl between them. Three large teenaged boys were napping in the back. Everyone appeared to be healthy and well dressed. I could tell Pappy wanted these people.

“Y’all lookin’ for work?” he asked.

“Yep. Lookin’ for Lloyd Crenshaw, somewhere west of Black Oak.”

My grandfather pointed this way and that, and they drove off. We watched them until they were out of sight.

He could’ve offered them more than Mr. Crenshaw was promising. Hill people were notorious for negotiating their labor. Last year, in the middle of the first picking on our place, the Fulbrights from Calico Rock disappeared one Sunday night and went to work for a farmer ten miles away. But Pappy was not dishonest, nor did he want to start a bidding war.

We tossed a baseball along the edge of a cotton field, stopping whenever a truck approached.

My glove was a Rawlings that Santa had delivered the Christmas before. I slept with it nightly and oiled it weekly, and nothing was as dear to my soul.

My grandfather, who had taught me how to throw and catch and hit, didn’t need a glove. His large, callused hands absorbed my throws without the slightest sting.

Though he was a quiet man who never bragged, Eli Chandler had been a legendary baseball player. At the age of seventeen, he had signed a contract with the Cardinals to play professional baseball. But the First War called him, and not long after he came home, his father died. Pappy had no choice but to become a farmer.

Pop Watson loved to tell me stories of how great Eli Chandler had been — how far he could hit a baseball, how hard he could throw one.

“Probably the greatest ever from Arkansas,” was Pop’s assessment.

“Better than Dizzy Dean?” I would ask.

“Not even close,” Pop would say, sighing.

When I relayed these stories to my mother, she always smiled and said, “Be careful. Pop tells tales.”

Pappy, who was rubbing the baseball in his mammoth hands, cocked his head at the sound of a vehicle. Coming from the west was a truck with a trailer behind it. From a quarter of a mile away we could tell they were hill people. We walked to the shoulder of the road and waited as the driver downshifted, gears crunching and whining as he brought the truck to a stop.

I counted seven heads, five in the truck, two in the trailer.

“Howdy,” the driver said slowly, sizing up my grandfather as we in turn quickly scrutinized them.

“Good afternoon,” Pappy said, taking a step closer but still keeping his distance.

Tobacco juice lined the lower lip of the driver. This was an ominous sign. My mother thought most hill people were prone to bad hygiene and bad habits. Tobacco and alcohol were forbidden in our home. We were Baptists.

“Name’s Spruill,” he said.

“Eli Chandler. Nice to meet you. Y’all lookin’ for work?”

“Yep.”

“Where you from?”

“Eureka Springs.”

The truck was almost as old as Pappy’s, with slick tires and a cracked windshield and rusted fenders and what looked like faded blue paint under a layer of dust. A tier had been constructed above the bed, and it was crammed with cardboard boxes and burlap bags filled with supplies. Under it, on the floor of the bed, a mattress was wedged next to the cab. Two large boys stood on it, both staring blankly at me. Sitting on the tailgate, barefoot and shirtless, was a heavy young man with massive shoulders and a neck as thick as a stump. He spat tobacco juice between the truck and the trailer and seemed oblivious to Pappy and me. He swung his feet slowly, then spat again, never looking away from the asphalt beneath him.

“I’m lookin’ for field hands,” Pappy said.

“How much you payin’?” Mr. Spruill asked.

“One-sixty a hundred,” Pappy said.

Mr. Spruill frowned and looked at the woman beside him. They mumbled something.

It was at this point in the ritual that quick decisions had to be made. We had to decide whether we wanted these people living with us. And they had to accept or reject our price.

“What kinda cotton?” Mr. Spruill asked.

“Stoneville,” my grandfather said. “The bolls are ready. It’ll be easy to pick.” Mr. Spruill could look around him and see the bolls bursting. The sun and soil and rains had cooperated so far. Pappy, of course, had been fretting over some dire rainfall prediction in the Farmers’ Almanac.

“We got one-sixty last year,” Mr. Spruill said.

I didn’t care for money talk, so I ambled along the center line to inspect the trailer. The tires on the trailer were even balder than those on the truck. One was half flat from the load. It was a good thing that their journey was almost over.

Rising in one corner of the trailer, with her elbows resting on the plank siding, was a very pretty girl. She had dark hair pulled tightly behind her head and big brown eyes. She was younger than my mother, but certainly a lot older than I was, and I...

Amazon.fr :

Ever since he published The Firm in 1991, John Grisham has remained the undisputed champ of the legal thriller. With A Painted House, however, he strikes out in a new direction. As the author is quick to note, this novel includes "not a single lawyer, dead or alive," and readers will search in vain for the kind of lowlife machinations that have been his stock-in-trade. Instead, Grisham has delivered a quieter, more contemplative story, set in rural Arkansas in 1952. It's harvest time on the Chandler farm, and the family has hired a crew of migrant Mexicans and "hill people" to pick 80 acres of cotton. A certain camaraderie pervades this bucolic dream team. But it's backbreaking work, particularly for the 7-year-old narrator, Luke: "I would pick cotton, tearing the fluffy bolls from the stalks at a steady pace, stuffing them into the heavy sack, afraid to look down the row and be reminded of how endless it was, afraid to slow down because someone would notice." What's more, tensions begin to simmer between the Mexicans and the hill people, one of whom has a penchant for bare-knuckles brawling. This leads to a brutal murder, which young Luke has the bad luck to witness. At this point--with secrets, lies, and at least one knife fight in the offing--the plot begins to take on that familiar, Grisham-style momentum. Still, such matters ultimately take a back seat in A Painted House to the author's evocation of time and place. This is, after all, the scene of his boyhood, and Grisham waxes nostalgic without ever succumbing to deep-fried sentimentality. Meanwhile, his account of Luke's Baptist upbringing occasions some sly (and telling) humor:

I'd been taught in Sunday school from the day I could walk that lying would send you straight to hell. No detours. No second chances. Straight into the fiery pit, where Satan was waiting with the likes of Hitler and Judas Iscariot and General Grant. Thou shalt not bear false witness, which, of course, didn't sound exactly like a strict prohibition against lying, but that was the way the Baptists interpreted it.

Whether Grisham will continue along these lines, or revert to the judicial shark tank for his next book, is anybody's guess. But A Painted House suggests that he's perfectly capable of telling an involving story with nary a subpoena in sight. --James Marcus

Les informations fournies dans la section « A propos du livre » peuvent faire référence à une autre édition de ce titre.

Acheter neuf Afficher le livre

Frais de port : EUR 6,36
De Royaume-Uni vers Etats-Unis

Destinations, frais et délais

Ajouter au panier

Meilleurs résultats de recherche sur AbeBooks

1.

Grisham, John
Edité par 2002-01-03. (2002)
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) Couverture souple Quantité : 1
Vendeur
Cambridge Rare Books
(Cambridge, Royaume-Uni)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre 2002-01-03., 2002. État : New. Arrow. New Ed. Paperback. Book: GOOD. 480pp. . N° de réf. du libraire NF-1749719

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 3,25
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 6,36
De Royaume-Uni vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais
Edition internationale
Edition internationale

2.

Grisham, John
Edité par Arrow/Children S (a Division of Random House
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) Couverture souple Quantité : > 20
Edition internationale
Vendeur
Sunshine Book Store
(Wilmington, DE, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Arrow/Children S (a Division of Random House. État : New. 0099416158 This is an International Edition. Brand New, paperback, Delivery within 6-14 business days, Same Contents as U.S Edition, ISBN and Cover design may differ. Choose Expedited shipping for delivery within 4-7 business days. We do not ship to PO Box, APO,FPO Address. We may ship the books from multiple warehouses across the globe, including India depending upon the availability of inventory storage. Customer satisfaction guaranteed. N° de réf. du libraire NO9780099416159

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 10,08
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : Gratuit
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais
Edition internationale
Edition internationale

3.

John Grisham
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) Paperback Quantité : > 20
Edition internationale
Vendeur
US_Superfast_Bookstore
(New Castle, DE, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Paperback. État : New. This is an International Edition Brand New Paperback Same Title Author and Edition as listed. ISBN and Cover design differs. Similar Contents as U.S Edition. Standard Delivery within 6-14 business days ACROSS THE GLOBE. We can ship to PO Box address in US. We may ship the books from multiple warehouses across the globe including Asia depending upon the availability of inventory. Printed in English. Customer satisfaction guaranteed. N° de réf. du libraire OS9780099416159

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 7,75
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 2,44
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

4.

Grisham, John
Edité par Arrow/Children S (a Division of Random House
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) PAPERBACK Quantité : 1
Vendeur
Your Online Bookstore
(Houston, TX, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Arrow/Children S (a Division of Random House. PAPERBACK. État : New. 0099416158 Ships promptly from Texas. N° de réf. du libraire GHP7112OCGG032717H0346

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 10,53
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : Gratuit
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

5.

Grisham, John
Edité par Arrow (2001)
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) Paperback Quantité : 1
Vendeur
Carol's Cache
(Atlanta, GA, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Arrow, 2001. Paperback. État : New. Etat de la jaquette : No Dust Jacket. N° de réf. du libraire 001733

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 9,48
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 3,64
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

6.

Grisham, John
Edité par Penguin Random House (2011)
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) Paperback Quantité : 10
Vendeur
BookVistas
(New Delhi, DELHI, Inde)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Penguin Random House, 2011. Paperback. État : New. N° de réf. du libraire PRH-9780099416159

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 9,47
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 3,99
De Inde vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

7.

John Grisham
Edité par 2001-09-29. (2001)
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) Couverture souple Quantité : 1
Vendeur
Cambridge Rare Books
(Cambridge, Royaume-Uni)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre 2001-09-29., 2001. État : New. Arrow Books Ltd. New edition. Paperback. Book: VERY GOOD. 480pp. . N° de réf. du libraire NF-1129974

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 7,15
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 6,36
De Royaume-Uni vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

8.

Grisham, John
Edité par Arrow/Children S (a Division of Random House
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) PAPERBACK Quantité : 1
Vendeur
Skymedia
(PLANTATION, FL, Etats-Unis)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Arrow/Children S (a Division of Random House. PAPERBACK. État : New. 0099416158 New Unread Book may have some minor shelf wear. Fast Shipping, Excellent Customer Service, Satisfaction Guaranteed. N° de réf. du libraire C-5-361

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 9,38
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 4,60
Vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

9.

Grisham, John
Edité par Penguin Random House (2011)
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) Paperback Quantité : 10
Vendeur
A - Z Books
(New Delhi, DELHI, Inde)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre Penguin Random House, 2011. Paperback. État : New. N° de réf. du libraire PRH-9780099416159

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 9,47
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 4,99
De Inde vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

10.

John Grisham
Edité par 2001-09-29. (2001)
ISBN 10 : 0099416158 ISBN 13 : 9780099416159
Neuf(s) Couverture souple Quantité : 1
Vendeur
Cambridge Rare Books
(Cambridge, Royaume-Uni)
Evaluation vendeur
[?]

Description du livre 2001-09-29., 2001. État : New. Arrow Books Ltd. New edition. Paperback. Book: GOOD. 480pp. . N° de réf. du libraire NF-1130491

Plus d'informations sur ce vendeur | Poser une question au libraire

Acheter neuf
EUR 8,32
Autre devise

Ajouter au panier

Frais de port : EUR 6,36
De Royaume-Uni vers Etats-Unis
Destinations, frais et délais

autres exemplaires de ce livre sont disponibles

Afficher tous les résultats pour ce livre