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Lucy Gayheart by Willa Cather
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Lucy Gayheart (1935)

by Willa Cather

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344331,845 (3.98)41
  1. 00
    Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín (pacocillero)
    pacocillero: Aunque el estilo es muy distinto las historias convergen en que son las dos mujeres que emigran buscando un cambio en sus vidas.
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Lucy Gayheart grows up in the small town of Haverford in the midwest. She becomes a fixture in the town, with her happy personality and outgoing nature.

When she goes off to Chicago to study music, the town and her family misses her. She becomes infatuated with a singer and becomes his accompanist.

She has friends from home and sees a number of them periodically but then something surprising happens with a man she had been seeing.

It is almost as if this sad thing unjustly happened to a wonderful woman and it is easy to picture this being made into a film. ( )
  mikedraper | May 31, 2013 |
This is an elegantly-written book, although I sensed almost from the start that Lucy's story would end unhappily. I kept hoping that she would find happiness, and I really, really wanted to be proved wrong with a conventionally happy ending.

Lucy Gayheart is a fascinating, beautiful young woman, and a talented pianist. At the age of eighteen she leaves her small town home to study in Chicago. When she has the opportunity to work as an accompanist for ageing but charismatic - and married - singer Clement Sebastian, she is fascinated by him and quickly falls in love. Harry Gordon, her friend and suitor from her home town of Haverford arrives. He suggests - most unromantically - that they should get married. Lucy feels unable to do so, torn between Sebastian and what he represents (vibrant city life, artistic success) and her own small town, where she grew up and where her roots are.

The section of the novel dealing with Lucy's return to Haverford is almost painful to read. Even when she is feeling positive and on the side of life, one can't help feeling that her happiness is brittle and cannot last. Beautifully written though the book is, and courageous though Lucy is in many ways, it's rather a bleak story. It does carry a big emotional charge, though, and I derived as much pleasure from the construction of the story as I did from the novel itself. [November 2007] ( )
  startingover | Feb 1, 2011 |
1080 Lucy Gayheart, by Willa Cather (read 20 Sep 1970) As I read this book I kept being not too impressed. I thought it was too like Cather's The Song of the Lark. But it is not like it at all. True, it involves a Midwestern girl who goes to Chicago to study piano, but this story is not about achievement, but about life. [SPOILER] Lucy's married (to another) lover is drowned, and Lucy returns to Haverford, Neb. and drowns in the Platte. It is at this point the book hits high drama, and the last part is touched by perfection. The big deal is Harry Gordon snubbing her in Haverford--even I thought him a cad. Of course Lucy bothered me too. She is not a wholly-admirable heroine--not like Cecile in Shadows on the Rock. ( )
  Schmerguls | Jun 5, 2009 |
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In Harverford on the Platte the townspeople still talk of Lucy Gayheart.
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Book description
Lucy Gayheart is a talented pianist, a woman of grace and vitality with "that singular brightness of young beauty". It is 1901 and she is studying music in the magical smoky city of Chicago, returning occasionally to provincial Haverford, the town of her birth. She meets and falls in love with a middle-aged opera singer, a man whose influence will change the course of her life forever. First published in 1935, this resonant novel is much more than a simple love story. For, rejecting the commonplaces of small-town life, Lucy seeks the splendour of an "invisible, inviolable world" glimpsed through her music. In contrasting the possibilities of each, Willa Cather has produced a novel of clarity and quiet distinction.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0679728880, Paperback)

"Some people's lives are affected by what happens to their person or their property, but for others fate is what happens to their feelings and their thoughts—that and nothing more." In this haunting 1935 novel, the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of My Ántonia and Death Comes for the Archbishop performs a series of crystalline variations on the themes that preoccupy her greatest fiction: the impermanence of innocence, the opposition between prairie and city, provincial American values and world culture, and the grandeur, elation, and heartache that await a gifted young woman who leaves her small Nebraska town to pursue a life in art.At the age of eighteen, Lucy Gayheart heads for Chicago to study music. She is beautiful and impressionable and ardent, and these qualities attract the attention of Clement Sebastian, an aging but charismatic singer who exercises all the tragic, sinister fascination of a man who has renounced life only to turn back to seize it one last time. Out of their doomed love affair—and Lucy's fatal estrangement from her origins—Willa Cather creates a novel that is as achingly lovely as a Schubert sonata.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:40:23 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Fervently pursuing the life of an artist, a young music student leaves behind her small midwestern town existence and comes to know the elation and heartache of a life in the creative world.

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