The Road Home

ISBN 13 : 9781447259732

The Road Home

 
9781447259732: The Road Home

The Road Home lies in the shadows of Manifest Destiny and Wounded Knee; it is etched into the landscape of an old man's memory and into the stubborn dreams of a young man's heart. In Jim Harrison's latest masterpiece, five members of the Northridge family narrate the tangled epic of their history on the expanses of the Nebraska plains. They strive to understand their fates, reconcile with demons of the past, love with honor, live in accordance with the land and the lessons in humility it teaches them. And to die with grace. As the family grapples with the mysterious forces that both pull them apart and draw them inextricably back together, they learn of life's lessons: the deception of passion, the pain of love, the vitality of art, and the supplication to nature's generosity and fury.

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Review :

With his 1988 novel, Dalva, Jim Harrison commenced an epic of the American Midwest--or more specifically, the Nebraska sandhills. In The Road Home his eponymous heroine returns in search of the son she abandoned 30 years before, only to find herself more deeply enmeshed than ever in the coils of the family romance. (Quite literally, by the way: the father of Dalva's son was her half-brother.) Now, a decade later, Harrison continues her story in The Road Home. Ranging over an entire century, this second installment encompasses both Dalva's ancestry and her valedictory impulses in the face of death, circa 1987.

As he did in the earlier book, the author passes the narrative baton from one character to another. There are five highly individual voices at work, including not only Dalva's own but that of her grandfather, mother, and son. This makes for a dense, Rashomon-like structure, in which events are revisited by one generation after another and truth is a relative thing--in every sense of the word. Harrison leavens this spiraling saga with splendid passages about everything from the Lakota Sioux to bird hunting, from the complexities of art to the simplicities of the wandering life: "There's a sweet, vaguely scary feeling in disappearance," notes Dalva's son, Nelse. And as always, the author can convey both the surprising beauty of a landscape and an almost suffocating sense of its abundance. "It is neither more nor less endurable in May," says Dalva of the lilac-encircled family cemetery, "when it is enshrouded by the heavy-scented purple and white flowers, a smell that on warm evenings is so dense as to be almost visible.... The sound of the crickets arrived one by one until they were a chorus, and if you walked down the gravel road toward the Niobrara the frogs from the lower, marshy areas were so loud as to be barely endurable." --Bob Brandeis

From the Back Cover :

Jim Harrison is one of this country's most acclaimed writers, and in The Road Home, his first full-length novel since Dalva ten years ago, he delivers a majestic and generous story that is no less than a true American epic.

The Road Home continues the story of his captivating heroine Dalva and her peculiar and remarkable family. It encompasses the voices of Dalva's grandfather John Northridge, the austere, hard-living half-Sioux patriarch; Naomi, the widow of his favorite son and namesake; Paul, the first Northridge son, who lived in the shadow of his brother; and Nelse, the son taken from Dalva at birth, who now has returned to find her. It is haunted by the hovering spirits of the father and the lover Dalva lost to this country's wars. It is a family history drenched in suffering and joy, imbued with fierce independence and love, rooted in the Nebraska soil, and intertwined with the destiny of whites and native Americans in the American West.

Epic in scope, stretching from the close of the nineteenth century to the present day, The Road Home is a stunning and trenchant novel, written with the humor, humanity, and inimitable evocation of the American spirit that have delighted Jim Harrison's legion of fans.

Praise for The Road Home

"[The Road Home] will take its place among the major works of American literature."-Frank Caso, Booklist (starred review)

"A saga as homespun as an old quilt. . . . [The characters] are such good company you forget they exists nowhere but in Harrison's imagination."-Malcolm Jones, Jr., Newsweek

"In his new novel, The Road Home, Jim Harrison demonstrates why he is considered one of the best storytellers around . . . Harrison's exuberance for details is refreshing . . . Harrison is at the top of his game here . . . With such beguiling voices, we're always ready to dust ourselves off and get back in the saddle."-Tim Wendel, USA Today

"The humor, conscience and iconoclastic spirit of Mark Twain live on in Jim Harrison. . . . The Road Home is Harrison at the peak of his powers . . . an epic narrative that expands in richness of human association as it follows each character's strife-filled story, reinforcing and validating an ultimately harmonious vision of life."-Steve Dykes, Boston Sunday Herald

"Good fiction, like Jim Harrison's latest novel, The Road Home reaffirms that our separate and private lives reflect patterns of a larger humanity. . . . Harrison dramatizes with sage sensibility the lesson that no one is an island apart from the rest of us. . . . The Road Home is a fine novel, crafted with great passion, gusto, and empathy. Read for its wisdom and its application to all our lives . . . Harrison's art and rage for order bring the strong and abiding truths of fiction to our search for family values, for old verities."-Robert F. Gish, The Christian Science Monitor

"The Road Home is a bountiful, rambunctious, serious book about who we are and how we become that way, and its muscular, life-affirming story may open a few eyes and hearts."-Corey Mesler, The Memphis Commercial Appeal

"A vivid meditation on the defining power of the family, and of the kind of redemption offered by an awareness of nature's rather pitiless beauty."-Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"With an unforced lucidity, the novel explores the tension between the Native American and white cultures, the effects of art and poetry on one's conception of existence and the very purpose of existence viewed from the grace of the divinely ordinary life."-Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"[The Road Home] is not only a compelling drama but a profound consideration of how one lives a meaningful life."-Library Journal (starred review)

"If our most important writers are the ones who most adamantly refuse to forget, then Jim Harrison ought to be considered a national treasure. . . . The Road Home, reads like a manifesto. It is his longest, most ambitious and satisfying novel to date: rich in character, complex in theme, dazzling in scope. . . . A work of high art: to read it is to make an act of affirmation."-Jofie Ferrari-Adler, Washington Times

"This is a masterful novel, one that compels the reader to care deeply about its fascinating cast of characters and treasure, with them, the beauty of nature and a life freely lived."-Foreword

"The Road Home is bold . . . It is colorful, 3-D storytelling with broad, impressionistic brush strokes, one-line poetic sprints and a slowly flowing resonance that seeps eventually, to the bone."-Randy Hess, Book

Praise for Jim Harrison:

"Set in the heart of America, his stories move with random power and reach, in the manner of Melville and Faulkner."-The Boston Globe

"Harrison is among the foremost writers of the literary generation that has succeeded Styron, Mailer, Jones and Updike."-Philip Caputo

"Jim Harrison is a writer with immortality in him."-The Sunday Times (London)

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Jim Harrison
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ISBN 10 : 1447259734 ISBN 13 : 9781447259732
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