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The Master Butchers Singing Club (P.S.) by…
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The Master Butchers Singing Club (P.S.) (original 2003; edition 2005)

by Louise Erdrich

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,642None4,416 (4.04)77
Member:karen_o
Title:The Master Butchers Singing Club (P.S.)
Authors:Louise Erdrich
Info:Harper Perennial (2005), Paperback, 416 pages
Collections:Your library, Historical Fiction
Rating:****
Tags:BCC, historical fiction, WWII

Work details

The Master Butchers Singing Club by Louise Erdrich (2003)

  1. 10
    The Turtle Catcher by Nicole Helget (zinschj)
    zinschj: Both are stories of post-World War I immigrants struggling with their new lives in America.
  2. 00
    Fall on Your Knees by Ann-Marie MacDonald (ainsleytewce)
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» See also 77 mentions

English (37)  German (1)  French (1)  All languages (39)
Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
Words like Adventure, mystery, enchanted, momentous, trajectory all promise a great story. Although the language is beautiful, the story never lives up to its potential. It builds, then falls flat. I was expecting something momentous but found mundane. I suppose there isa metaphor for life in there but I didn't want a metaphor, I was looking for a story. ( )
  cynsimo5 | Jan 29, 2014 |
Several years ago I read "Tales of Burning Love" by Erdrich and didn't like it at all. I picked this book up because of the cover and almost didn't read it because of past experience with the author. I'm so glad I let that face on the cover draw me in. The characters in "Master Butcher" are real people who are products of the land, environment, and times in which they live. Their lives are hard, but yet are sometimes filled with humor and song. Their thoughts and feelings are repressed but not depressed. The book is not "pretty" yet it is not "ugly." In our neat, clean, government inspected lives, we are so far removed from the act of butchering that it seems dark and violent, but to Fidelis and those around him, it is merely a fact of life -- an occupation and a good one at that. Fidelis is a butcher who sings.
Erdrich does a great job of weaving humor, fear, anxiety, and love into characters and events that are never contrived but are straightforward and almost passionless. I'm definitely going to explore more of Erdrich's works. ( )
  maryreinert | Aug 16, 2013 |
The Master Butchers Singing Club by Louise Erdrich is a treasure. A big bold story about family, and what that means to her full force of characters in a small town in the early 20th century. A rich beautifully told story about German Immigrants, Native Americans and a small town in the Dakotas. Unforgettable. ( )
  jvandehy | Apr 4, 2013 |
Louise Erdrich likes to sneak up behind us and surprise us with what we already know but are trying to forget.

Death and life are the same. Our own lives lead us towards our own deaths as we live from the proteins that we harvest from those other living creatures killed for our nourishment. And we, ourselves, live and die for the nourishment of others.

That which we see around us is so much more than we suspect; but is hidden from us by, not only our own self-imposed illusions, but also by the deceptions imposed upon us by others for our own, and their own, protection.

This book plays out those realities in ways that confuse and deceive us so that we may then learn for ourselves that which we have forgotten.

This is one more gem; and Louise Erdrich keeps making jewelery. ( )
  pajarita | Mar 10, 2013 |
I thought this story was so original and well written. It's a deeply spiritual book that questions peoples faith and devotion to each other. Delphine was especially interesting and it was interesting to witness the changes she went through. ( )
  janismack | Feb 26, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
Amazon.com Review
Louise Erdrich's The Master Butchers Singing Club is a powerfully told story of love, death, redemption, and resurrection. After German soldier Fidelis Waldvogel returns home from World War I to marry his best friend's pregnant widow, he packs up his father's butcher knives and sets sail for America. ....
added by eigram | editAmazon.com, Gisele Toueg (Jul 24, 2009)
 
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To my father, who sang to me.
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Fidelis walked home from the great war in twelve days and slept thirty-eight hours once he crawled into his childhood bed.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0060837055, Paperback)

Louise Erdrich's The Master Butchers Singing Club is a powerfully told story of love, death, redemption, and resurrection. After German soldier Fidelis Waldvogel returns home from World War I to marry his best friend's pregnant widow, he packs up his father's butcher knives and sets sail for America. He settles in Argus, North Dakota, where he sets up a meat shop with his wife Eva, who quickly befriends the struggling yet resourceful Delphine Watzka. Delphine, who runs a vaudeville show with her balancing partner Cyprian Lazarre, has returned home to Argus to care for her alcoholic father. While most of this emotionally rich novel focuses on the changing landscape of small-town life as seen through Delphine and Fidelis's eyes, Erdrich does a masterful job of illuminating hidden dramas through her secondary characters. Erdrich's portrayal of these various townsfolk, including members of the Master Butchers Singing Club, truly shows off her storytelling talent. Her ability to infuse each character with a distinct and multifaceted personality makes this novel an intimate and thought-provoking adventure. --Gisele Toueg

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:21:50 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

"What happens when a trained killer discovers, in the aftermath of war, that his true vocation is love? Having survived the killing fields of World War I, Fidelis Waldvogel returns home to his quiet German village and marries the pregnant widow of his best friend who was killed in action." "With a suitcase full of sausages and a master butcher's precious set of knives, Fidelis sets out for America, getting as far as Argus, North Dakota, where he settles. Over the years he works hard, building a business, a home for his family - which now includes Eva and four sons - and a singing club consisting of the best voices in town. The group embraces everyone, from the local banker to the town drunk, the sheriff, the other butcher in Argus, and an elusive drifter, part Ojibwe, part French, whose balancing act is a wonder to behold." "What happens when the Old World meets the New - in the person of Delphine Watzka, a daughter of Argus whose origins are a mystery even to her - turns out to be one of the great adventures of Fidelis's life. Delphine meets Eva and is enchanted; she meets Fidelis, and the ground trembles. These momentous encounters will determine the course of Delphine's life, and the trajectory of this novel by Louise Erdrich."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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