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The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall
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The Lonely Polygamist

by Brady Udall

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1,202999,620 (3.75)71
  1. 40
    A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving (sruszala)
    sruszala: The style--many characters, complicated but compelling story, the humor--all remind me of John Irving
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» See also 71 mentions

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Showing 1-5 of 99 (next | show all)
A beautifully written, family drama. The strange thing is, I can't think of who I would recommend this to. I think the book would be a great book for a book group to read and discuss. I feel the reader must have some life experience to truly appreciate the story of Golden Richards and his family. ( )
  melanieklo | Jul 25, 2018 |
I started this book in 2013 and put it down. In the spirit of finishing and making sure I had given it every chance I picked it up again. Now I have given it time that I will never get back and I'm most irritated. This book drags on and on without giving you any opportunity to bind with any character. Although you only get to know a few of the characters, there is nothing interesting about them. The story is flat and had no real direction. I am not even sure why I gave this a second star. It's truly barely one star worthy. ( )
  Nemorn | Jun 4, 2018 |
Amazing. One of my favorite books of the year. ( )
  GaylaBassham | May 27, 2018 |
Another book that I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it! Even though the book did not end at all the way I wanted it to, it was a very enjoyable read. I've always been fascinated by the subject matter (though I could never be a sister wife) I was unsure about this book. While it started a little slow, it became engrossing quickly. The stories of the rich, flawed, unique characters drew me right in. My favorite character was Rusty, but I also felt a surprising kinship with Trish. A great read, one I recommend for anyone looking for something a little off the beaten path. ( )
  bribre01 | May 6, 2018 |
I really liked this book, and it was a big step up from Edgar Mint, Udall's first novel. The story is wildly funny, well paced, and often poignant. To me, it seemed to get at that central tension of family life--the constant push and pull between individual desires and responsibility for others.

It's not a perfect novel. Although I liked all three of the protagonists, I didn't understand the reasoning behind some of the narrative shifts. Why the chapters in italics? Why the toggling between present and past tense? Still, I liked that the book humanized people that for most Americans are beyond the pale, yet still provided an unflinching look at the serious difficulties of the polygamist lifestyle. ( )
  jalbacutler | Jan 10, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 99 (next | show all)
Sometimes, reading “The Lonely Polygamist,” one wishes the author had a little less respect, but then the book might be that much less charming.
 
It's a wonderful ride filled with humor, sadness, frustration, and joy.
added by Katya0133 | editPublishers Weekly, Wendy Manning (Apr 12, 2010)
 
Udall's polished storytelling and sterling cast of perfectly realized and flawed characters make this a serious contender for Great American Novel status.
added by Katya0133 | editPublishers Weekly (Mar 22, 2010)
 
In the end, Udall's story has some of the whimsy of John Nichols's The Milagro Beanfield War but all the complexity of a Tolstoyan or even Faulknerian production--and one of the most satisfying closing lines in modern literature, too.
added by Katya0133 | editKirkus (Mar 1, 2010)
 
Udall observes with a keen eye for the ridiculous while showing compassion. . . . Enthusiastically recommended.
added by Katya0133 | editLibrary Journal, Donna Bettencourt (Feb 15, 2010)
 
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Epigraph
Our end drifts nearer,/ the moon lifts,/ radiant with terror./ The state/ is a diver under a glass bell./ A father's no shield/ for his child. ~Robert Lowell, "Fall 1961"
Dedication
In memory of Carol Houck Smith 1923-2008 and for my brothers and sisters, every last one of them: TRAVIS, SYMONIE, CORD, BOOMER, CAMIE, LINDY, BRIGHAM, KEEGAN
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To put it as simply as possible: this is the story of a polygamist who has an affair.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0393062627, Hardcover)

Amazon Best Books of the Month, May 2010: EmNephiHelamanNaomiJosephinePaulineNovellaParleyGale... When times get tense--and they often do--for Golden Richards, the title patriarch of Brady Udall's The Lonely Polygamist, he turns to a soothing chant of the names, in order, of his 28 children. (It's also practical, when he needs to sort out just which toddler is showing him a scab, and which teen is asking if he can come to her 4-H demo.) While Big Love seeks the inherent soap opera in a man with many wives, Udall finds the slapstick: Golden's houses are the sort of places where the dog is often wearing underwear and a child or two likely isn't. But Udall doesn't settle just for jokes (though the jokes are excellent). Golden may be hapless, distracted, and deceitful, but he is large-hearted and so is his story. There's menace and more than a full share of tragedy there, as well as unabashed redemption and a particular sympathy for the loneliest members of this crowded family. With a fresh and faultless ear for American vernacular, Udall's big tale of beset manhood effortlessly earns its comparisons to tragicomic family classics from The Corrections to John Irving. --Tom Nissley

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:23 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

A tragicomic story of a deeply faithful man who, crippled by grief and the demands of work and family, becomes entangled in an affair that threatens to destroy his family's future.

» see all 5 descriptions

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W.W. Norton

2 editions of this book were published by W.W. Norton.

Editions: 0393062627, 0393339718

Recorded Books

An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

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