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The Orchardist: A Novel by Amanda Coplin
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The Orchardist: A Novel (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Amanda Coplin

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900879,809 (3.83)70
Member:brangwinn
Title:The Orchardist: A Novel
Authors:Amanda Coplin
Info:Harper (2012), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 448 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Rating:****
Tags:Washington State, Wenatchee

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The Orchardist by Amanda Coplin (2012)

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Showing 1-5 of 85 (next | show all)
It took me a while to "digest" this book. I loved it...so much so that it took me longer to read than most other books of the same length.
Writing style is wonderfully descriptive, the entire first page simply describes the main character physically, thus I was able to "see" him in my mind (as in, if a movie were to be made of this book, I would cast Geoffrey Rush, as that is who I saw in my mind).
I could smell the orchard, taste the apples and apricots, see the lush greenery of the orchard in spring, hear the bees buzzing. The descriptiveness draws you in, and keeps you there, hungering for more.
The words actually make you feel the characters fears, love, hunger, fatigue, etc. I could sense the anguish and despair, the hope and the expectations of the 4 main characters.
In the end, I elt that amazing feeling when one has finished a book so well written, that one cannot be anything but a bit sad that it's over.
The Orchardist is definitely going on my list of "read-it-again-because-I-just-have-to" books, and the books on that list for me are few and far between. ( )
  bb007rn | Jan 7, 2015 |
To me, the story-- which begins in a Washington-state orchard in the late 1800s-- was just dreary and depressing. This novel has been praised as poetic and beautifully written. But I just couldn't get into it. ( )
  DonnaCallea | Nov 29, 2014 |
What a beautifully written book - I loved the slow steadiness of the writing - the descriptors were beautiful and not overdone ----- this was in ways a love story within a most unusual family - a very solitary man who lost his family early in life tended to his orchards with devotion - 2 young pregnant sisters arrived on his land having suffered serious sexual abuse and he slowly and gently worked to gain their trust - a lot happened and powerful emotions were expressed, yet everything that occurred was intentionally crafted and the effect was mesmerizing - these characters inhabited me -

The storyline was slow and deliberate which was beautiful to read, but also occasionally failed to fully capture me - also, some of Della's experiences at the jail seemed unrealistic - otherwise I would have rated this 5 stars -

I was amazed that this was written by a first time author but was not surprised that it took 8 years to complete - i really look forward to Ms. Coplin's next work - ( )
  njinthesun | Nov 10, 2014 |
This was a beautiful story well told. It reminded me of Cold Mountain. The quiet simplicity of the setting and characters was mesmerizing. This is a book that would not be diminished by rereading. ( )
  elizabeth.b.bevins | Nov 4, 2014 |
My mother and I rarely like the same books, but this is an exception and falls a bit outside of my normal reading genres. It’s solid literary fiction, but far enough in the past to be historical fiction as well. What drew me to read it were the characters, an orchardist and some orphans, the distinct location, Wenatchee Washington (a place I’ve been and recall a traffic jam at the town’s one stoplight, well it seemed like one stoplight) and the praise it has gotten. Well-deserved praise. It’s written with verve and creativity and while a lot of what is described is pretty quotidian, it remained taut and interesting throughout.

The real stand-out are Coplin’s characterizations. Starting with William Talmage, the Orchardist of the title and his relationship with local midwife Caroline Middey and then introducing the two orphan girls who show up in town. Don’t get too comfortable with how you imagine the story will go; it won’t. I promise. While nothing terribly dramatic happens, things take turns that I didn’t expect and didn’t understand. Particularly with Della. I didn’t have much patience with her or her sister, Jane, but they said and did things that kept me guessing and intrigued. I think a situation like this could only be plausible in the past. Now, the state and local authorities would take over and Caroline and Talmage would never have had the opportunity to care for the girls or enrich their lives with the person that Angelene became. How they bond gives a tremendous sense of community that I rarely encounter in the novels I read and I hope Coplin writes more. ( )
  Bookmarque | Oct 23, 2014 |
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To my family
And in memory of my grandfather
Dwayne Eugene Sanders
1936-1994
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His face was as pitted as the moon.
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Book description
Amanda Coplin evokes a powerful sense of place, mixing tenderness and violence as she spins an engrossing tale of a solitary orchardist who provides shelter to two runaway teenage girls in the untamed American West, and the dramatic consequences of his actions.
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When two feral girls--one of them very pregnant--appear on his homestead, solitary orchardist Talmadge, who carefully tends the grove of fruit trees he has cultivated for nearly half a century, vows to save and protect them.

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