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Plainsong by Kent Haruf
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Plainsong (1999)

by Kent Haruf

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Plainsong (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,5941681,585 (4.01)559
A heartstrong story of family and romance, tribulation and tenacity, set on the High Plains east of Denver.
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» See also 559 mentions

English (157)  Italian (5)  Finnish (1)  Dutch (1)  Piratical (1)  Spanish (1)  German (1)  All languages (167)
Showing 1-5 of 157 (next | show all)
For a book filled with so much sadness, it was utterly beautiful. ( )
  carliwi | Sep 23, 2019 |
I first heard of this novel on LT way back when, and I'm not sure why I waited so long to read it. I knew I would love it - in fact, I collected hardcovers of all three books in the trilogy because I knew it would be just my thing. And the first volume did not disappoint. It follows several denizens of Holt, a small town on the eastern plains of Colorado. Nothing hugely momentous happens, but the various perspectives give us a complete picture of life and struggle in a small town. Haruf treats his characters with such respect, imbuing them with dignity and worth, that one understands the inherent value of the Everyman, not the larger-than-life Doer of Great Deeds, but the average person trying to achieve nothing more than a good life. There is conflict and death and ugliness, but what stands out more are the tenderness and quiet moments that constitute the best parts of life.

A lovely, gentle novel with unforgettable characters. ( )
4 vote katiekrug | Aug 27, 2019 |
3.5 The size and stillness of the high plains fill this understated book. Worth it for the gift to the doctor. ( )
  Eoin | Jun 3, 2019 |
Beautiful story of the people in a small town in the west. A marriage disintegrating with the mother going a little mad who moves away leaving two young boys in the care of their father. A teenage girl who gets pregnant by a guy who abandons her - she then goes to live with two old bachelor brother ranchers in an unlikely and touching alliance - relationship and other normal people in the town whose simple lives seem as resonant and piercing as the best characters in literature.
  JoshSapan | May 29, 2019 |
This is a good book. It is well written in a solid and peaceful, beautiful way, reminding me a little of Dan O'Brien. There is a little, quiet, human humor. Haruf conveys the feeling, and the tribulations, of life in rural Colorado. I don't entirely connect with the characters, though; perhaps they are missing some quirkiness or diversity. They are a bit flat and predictable—realistic and believable, but bland. ( )
  breic | May 18, 2019 |
Showing 1-5 of 157 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (11 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kent Harufprimary authorall editionscalculated
Carey, PeterIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pera, MartaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vosmaer, MartineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Plainsong - the unisonous vocal music used in the Christian church from the earliest times; any simple and unadorned melody or air
Dedication
For Cathy And in memory of Louis and Eleanor Haruf
First words
Here was this man Tom Guthrie in Holt standing at the back window in the kitchen of his house smoking cigarettes and looking out over the back lot where the sun was just coming up.
Quotations
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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