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North Woods: A Novel av Daniel Mason
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North Woods: A Novel (utgåvan 2023)

av Daniel Mason (Författare)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
9855021,644 (4.16)88
When a pair of young lovers abscond from a Puritan colony, little do they know that their humble cabin in the woods will become the home of an extraordinary succession of human and nonhuman characters alike. An English soldier, destined for glory, abandons the battlefields of the New World to devote himself to apples. A pair of spinster twins navigate war and famine, envy and desire. A crime reporter unearths a mass grave--only to discover that the ancient trees refuse to give up their secrets. A lovelorn painter, a sinister conman, a stalking panther, a lusty beetle: As each inhabitant confronts the wonder and mystery around them, they begin to realize that the dark, raucous, beautiful past is very much alive."--!cProvided by publisher.… (mer)
Medlem:slugmanor
Titel:North Woods: A Novel
Författare:Daniel Mason (Författare)
Info:Random House (2023), 384 pages
Samlingar:Önskelista
Betyg:
Taggar:Ingen/inga

Verksinformation

North Woods av Daniel Mason

Senast inlagd avinpariswithyou, faldrath, BigTony, privat bibliotek, nichollinlove, Melba13, fromthecomfychair
  1. 20
    The Overstory av Richard Powers (allthegoodbooks)
    allthegoodbooks: Episodic and focused on trees and people
  2. 00
    Greenwood av Michael Christie (allthegoodbooks)
    allthegoodbooks: the rise and fall of a family whilst the trees surround and endure
  3. 00
    A House Through Time av David Olusoga (allthegoodbooks)
    allthegoodbooks: Non-fiction, set in the UK tells the historical story of a house in Bristol from being built until today.
  4. 00
    Unsettled Ground av Claire Fuller (allthegoodbooks)
    allthegoodbooks: Links to a part of the book - Osgood's Wonder and the life of the twins following their father's death
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» Se även 88 omnämnanden

Visa 1-5 av 49 (nästa | visa alla)
And in the same place in her heart where Alice kept her list of children's names, Mary kept a different list--far better referenced and annotated--of all the local husbands who got drunk and beat their wives.

This novel follows the various inhabitants and visitors to a single house in the New England woods over centuries, beginning with the first small structure built by early colonists who had to flee into the woods. Over time the house is added on to or remodeled, the fortunes of the people living there rise and fall, the house itself growing in stature and then diminishing, along with the surrounding woods, which also change over time.

This novel is almost interlinked short stories, except the length of each section varies and is sometime dependent on the reader having read the previous chapters. This is a superbly well-written book, and it is so cleverly and carefully constructed. By using the house as the center, while really being about the surrounding natural world, Mason avoids having to start the novel sometime in prehistory, like a Michener tome, or even having the include the indigenous people living in the area before the colonists arrived. The lives depicted range widely, from two sisters running a small apple orchard, to a opportunistic grifter riding the fad for séances, to a painter in love with his traveling companion, all the way into sometime near the present day.

While I admire this book, I didn't love it. There's a feeling of separation between the characters and the reader, a sense that abated as the novel grew closer to the present moment, and the final section was lovely, shedding light on the previous chapters, but also making clear that this novel is about a place, more than about the people who temporarily occupy the space. ( )
  RidgewayGirl | Jul 16, 2024 |
Advertised as "one of NYT 10 best books of the year." Please don't buy it for that reason.

It was well-written. It was different. It spanned generations. But when we come full circle, we don't come back to the original settlers of that land.

The catamount on the cover? Misplaced as a cover image, in my opinion, and misplaced in the book. The carnage wrought by that cat could have been left out completely and the story, again in my opinion, would have been better for it.

What put me off most was the violence.

To be honest, I almost stopped reading, but I'm glad I persisted as the final two chapters were the best.

I know I'm not giving you much to go on, but since it's now available in paperback and eBook, you don't risk much in getting a copy. Better yet, check it out from your local library. ( )
  DonnaMarieMerritt | Jul 14, 2024 |
4.5 stars. This was a beautifully written book about a beautiful piece of land in the north woods of Massachusetts. It did read a bit like a series of short stories but there was a common thread through all of them and it was somewhat exciting to discover how they were connected in some vignettes. I think I enjoyed the more historical stories in the beginning but the last few chapters stirred up the most emotion and thought. It was a bit slow at times (since you knew the stories weren’t leading to anything climatic) but it was hauntingly memorable and definitely worth the read. ( )
  slittleson | Jul 9, 2024 |
This was very different and very good. It begins with a young couple running away from their Puritan village in order to be together. They make their way to the woods in what will become Western Massachusetts. There they find a place to make their home. What follows is the story of that place and the inhabitants that come after. Humans, animals, trees, the land itself all become characters in the story of this place and the connections that are built, maintained and broken. The chapters read like connected stories but it’s also all about those connections.

It's an interesting book with varied formats and ways of telling the story. I thought it was good enough that as soon as I finished I handed to The Hubster and told him it was his next book. ( )
  SuziQoregon | Jun 26, 2024 |
I love books that I learn something from or that make me feel something. This book did neither. Three stars only because the structure was interesting including poems and faux historical sources. ( )
  vwinsloe | Jun 16, 2024 |
Visa 1-5 av 49 (nästa | visa alla)
Because Mason’s novel operates in such a robust variety of styles and voices, it is — perhaps more than its arboreal literary brethren — an unusually spectacular showcase of the various powerful responses that nature provokes in us, from wonderment to utter derangement ... If the episodes that make up North Woods are largely grim, Mason’s delivery is a pleasure, fueled by his exuberance at inhabiting the unique voices of a clutch of characters ... The fractured storytelling is all the better to suggest that, like the trees, humanity doesn’t operate in isolation.
tillagd av Lemeritus | ändraLos Angeles Times, Mark Athitakis (betalvägg) (Dec 19, 2023)
 
Gorgeous ... Manages, impressively, to balance both the narrow and the long view, intimately focusing on the lives of each of the house's inhabitants, yet expansively encompassing American history, natural history, and the relentless march of time and the cycle of the seasons ... It is the elegance with which Mason spins and links these stories in 12 chapters (each roughly connected to a different month) that truly dazzles ... here is nothing meager about this book, or Daniel Mason's talent.
tillagd av Lemeritus | ändraNPR, Heller McAlpin (Sep 19, 2023)
 
Mason’s historical fiction...brilliantly combine the granularity of realism with the timeless, shimmering allure of myth. His new novel, North Woods, promises — and delivers — more of the same ... A hodgepodge narrative, brazenly disjointed in time, perspective and form. Letters, poems and song lyrics, diary entries, medical case notes, real-estate listings, vintage botanical illustrations, pages of an almanac ... That North Woods proves captivating despite its piecemeal structure is testament to Mason’s powers as a writer, his stylish and supple narrative voice ... The secret of North Woods, its blending of the comic and the sublime, lies in the way Mason, deftly toggling between the macro and micro, manages to do both. He not only acknowledges cosmic indifference but celebrates it, even as he pauses to recognize the humans who experience jubilation and heartbreak as they wend their way toward oblivion. This is fiction that deals in minutes and in centuries, that captures the glory and the triviality of human lives. The forest and the trees: Mason keeps both in clear view in his eccentric and exhilarating novel.
tillagd av Lemeritus | ändraNew York Times, Rand Richards Cooper (betalvägg) (Sep 19, 2023)
 
Haunting, haunted ... The literary gods are inscrutable — the book club overlords even more so — but I’m praying you’ll consider getting lost in North Woods this fall. Elegantly designed with photos and illustrations, this is a time-spanning, genre-blurring work of storytelling magic ... Mason isn’t just passively watching the evolution of this site in the forest. Each chapter germinates its own form while sending out tendrils that entwine beneath the surface of the novel ... Revelatory.
tillagd av Lemeritus | ändraWashington Post, Ron Charles (betalvägg) (Sep 13, 2023)
 
...spectacular ghost story ... Mason interleaves his crystalline prose with enchanting and authentic-seeming historical documents, including a Native American captivity narrative, psychiatrist case notes, and pulpy true crime reportage. Each arc is beautifully, heartbreakingly conveyed, stitching together subtle connections across time. This astonishes.
tillagd av Lemeritus | ändraPublisher's Weekly (Jul 31, 2023)
 
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When a pair of young lovers abscond from a Puritan colony, little do they know that their humble cabin in the woods will become the home of an extraordinary succession of human and nonhuman characters alike. An English soldier, destined for glory, abandons the battlefields of the New World to devote himself to apples. A pair of spinster twins navigate war and famine, envy and desire. A crime reporter unearths a mass grave--only to discover that the ancient trees refuse to give up their secrets. A lovelorn painter, a sinister conman, a stalking panther, a lusty beetle: As each inhabitant confronts the wonder and mystery around them, they begin to realize that the dark, raucous, beautiful past is very much alive."--!cProvided by publisher.

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