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Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry
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Jayber Crow (original 2000; edition 2001)

by Wendell Berry

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8462510,632 (4.48)18
Member:micahe
Title:Jayber Crow
Authors:Wendell Berry
Info:Counterpoint (2001), Paperback, 384 pages
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Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry (2000)

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Reading Wendell Berry's Jayber Crow was like a lazy summer afternoon aboard a log raft, floating down a serene river. It was as much a bleeding of tension as it was an escape from reality. It made me long for the life of Port William, with all its ups and downs. A truly great read. ( )
  rencheple | Aug 26, 2016 |
I discovered this author from a friend's suggestion.Mr. Berry's books are stories of people that have endured life and all it gives and takes from you.The stories take place in a simpler time. Each book is about a resident in the town. You are drawn into the story and its characters. When the book ends, it is as if the character left a piece of themselves with you and you left a piece of yourself in Port William. I can highly recommend Jayber Crow.
Mr.Berry's books are a delight to read and hunker down with! ( )
  LauGal | Aug 16, 2016 |
A reading experience, for me, in which chapters and pages glide by, trusting the storyteller completely. An autobiography of Jayber. From his orphaned upbringing to boardinghouse to flirting with college, he settles fortuitously in Port William as town barber. This is more than a sequential telling of one's life though. Jayber's keen observation (and Berry's too, no doubt) of life, human nature, the natural world and his search for higher meaning to it all. And did I mention love and forgiveness? So many topics, such as what really is a well-lived life? What are the prices of so-called progress? You can get pleasantly lost in this gentle yet intellectually pinging novel. And I suggest you do. ( )
  JamesMScott | Mar 24, 2016 |
I listened to the audiobook version. I loved it. I only wish that I would have been reading a printed copy because many passages were so beautiful and I wanted to linger and re-read and soak up the words more deeply. The author has a lot to say in this story, and I have a lot to think about now. ( )
  hws337 | Jun 11, 2015 |
This is really a moving book. I cannot agree with the narrator's theology, but he is a wonderful person. For my own benefit, here is the ending. Mattie is hospitalized, and her husband is cutting the Nest Egg (forest). Jayber quietly goes to her hospital room:
Maybe, as a person sometimes does, she felt me watching. She opened her eyes. When she saw it was me, she said, "Jayber. Oh, he's cutting the woods."
And so she knew. Her eyes filled with tears, but she said quietly, "I could die in peace, I think, if the world was beautiful. To know it's being ruined is hard."
Then, in the loss of all the world, when I might have said the words I had so long wanted to say, I could not say them. I saw that I was not going to be able to talk without crying, and so I cried. I said, "but what about this other thing?"
She looked at me then. "Yes," she said. She held out her hand to me. She gave me the smile that I had never seen and will not see again in this world, and it covered me all over with light. ( )
  jimmoz | Dec 1, 2014 |
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Epigraph
Magnanimous Despair alone

Could show me so divine a thing...
Dedication
Virginia Berry

1907-1997

Requiescat in pace
First words
I never put up a barber pole or a sign or even gave my shop a name.
Quotations
Persons attempting to find a "text" in this book will be prosecuted; persons attempting to find a "subtext" in it will be banished; persons attempting to explain, interpret, explicate, analyze, deconstruct, or otherwise "understand" it will be exiled to a desert island in the company only of other explainers.

BY ORDER OF THE AUTHOR
I had a conscientious objection to making an exception of myself. p. 143
On pretty weekends in the summer...the river is disquieted from morning to night by people resting from their work. This resting involves traveling at great speed...These people are in an emergency to relax. (p. 331)
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