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Close Range : Wyoming Stories Paperback – February 10, 2000

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 285 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; 1st Scribner Paperback Fiction Ed edition (February 10, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684852225
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684852225
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (197 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #294,184 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

Pulitzer Prize-winner E. Annie Proulx forays through the underside of America's beloved Wild West in Close Range, a collection of stories about hardship and more hardship in Wyoming territory. Understanding that the West's infinite spaces tended to inspire neither introspection nor contemplation, but a violent and insatiable restlessness, Proulx's eight stories are dark reflections on the lives of a handful of characters striving to define themselves against the unforgiving landscapes. The three professional actors chosen to read the text give strong, resounding interpretations of the macabre tales. (Running time: 6 hours, 4 cassettes) --Natasha Senjanovich --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

This marvelous collection proves that Proulx's Pulitzer Prize for The Shipping News was no one-shot deal. Set in Wyoming, the 11 stories "feature down-on-their-luck ranchers, cowboys, and working men who watch helplessly as the modern world leaves them behind." (LJ 5/1/99)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews

I saw the movie before I read the book .
N. Faust
Ms. Proulx is a very concise writer, but, at the same time, she paints a very vivid picture of the landscape and the characters.
M. Harrigan
This is one of the best collections of short stories I have ever read.
Tony Thomas

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

533 of 553 people found the following review helpful By Stephen P. Manning on February 2, 2004
Format: Paperback
I am a grown-up, middle aged man not drawn much to sentimentality. I am not a practiced reader of fiction and I have spent only one night in Wyoming. I just finished reading the final story in the collection, "Brokeback Mountain",about ten minutes ago.

I still have tears in my eyes. It seems to me that I am falling out of a dream into the wet and chill February morning by San Francisco Bay where I now live. But the dream was of a place utterly familiar. I mean, emotionally familiar, familiar in memory, and evidently, familiar to my body. I can still feel the tingling just behind my cheekbones and the low-voltage electric discomfort in my chest. I guess Annie Proulx touched something in the geography of my own soul with her story. And even in the sadness that swirls around my eyes, I am grateful to her for that. And amazed that this woman could write so tellingly of men's hearts.

I said that I am a middle-aged man. So I have a history behind me. That's part of what makes you middle-aged. When you're young, who you want to be someday is the largest part of who you are. When you're middle-aged, the evidence begins to mount. The past is what it was and that is the largest part of who you are. It's harder to make believe anymore. And the story includes loss, confusion, missed opportunities, cowardice, fear, and memories of your own Brokeback Mountain. And sometimes the only redemption for the past, if it is redemption, is to remember it, fully. That's all.

Now that I am back in the waking world a bit more, I also want to say how beautifully Annie Proulx weaves the English language, with the kind of strength, color and contrapuntal roughness that makes it so earthy and satisfying.
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183 of 194 people found the following review helpful By SEB on May 24, 2005
Format: Paperback
--but the rest of the collection is powerful, too. If you haven't read Proulx, pick this one up. It's rough, raw, brutally honest storytelling.

But honestly, I can't explain what it is about Brokeback Mountain that makes me pull the book off the shelf at least twice a year since it came out five years ago. It's got to be one of the most intensely moving stories I've ever read in my life.

Those men, their lives. The scattered, fragile moments where they do connect, like that scene on the front porch when they haven't seen each other in four years or that moment where he finds the flannel shirts. Kick me in the gut while you grab my heart and rip it to shreds. You'll love it, I promise.

I'm sure that some people unfamiliar with Proulx's work or this story will permit the film adaptation to become another banal symbol of those crazy gays taking over EVERYTHING--and deny themselves the pleasure of reading good, solid American fiction.

Regardless, do yourself a huge favor: read this story before seeing the film (fingers crossed).
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84 of 92 people found the following review helpful By Kindle Customer on September 20, 2005
Format: Audio Cassette Verified Purchase
The first time I picked up Close Range: Wyoming Stories.

I thought MMm...Just another collection of boring stories about

white rural hicks. I've read stuff like this before. Usually set in the South. With the typical set of colorful charicters.

From the pompous upper crust to reddest of rednecks.

But I started reading. And kept on reading, for nine hours


I couldn't put it down. Annie Proulx is one powerful writer!

She made me rethink my attitudes about how rural folk lived.

Their lives are just as complex, mixed up and sad as us city dwellers are.

I chuckled at the first two or three stories. Felt empathy for

fourth. but it was the last story, Brokeback Mountain. That

one tore my heart out.

I ached for the charicters of Ennis and Jack. They lived in a

time that had no kind words for what were or how they felt about

each other. If they had lived 3000 years earlier or just 40 years later they could've been very happy together. But spending all those years apart. Only seeing each other maybe one or if they were lucky twice a year. Just made what they had even more bitter sweet. The ending had me in tears for three days, And I'm not the emotional type!

I've just ordered the audio version. and can't wait to

hear this wonderful book set to the spoken word.

Please, Please buy this book!
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Gregory Baird VINE VOICE on October 1, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Of all the author's working today I think that Annie Proulx has, hands down, the best descriptive style. She can instantly set a mood or a tone with just a few choice words, and draws you into the world of Wyoming so fully that you begin to feel like you've actually experienced it before (assuming, of course, that you haven't in real life). The hardships of ranch life and the loneliness (and sometimes aching futility)of each character makes 'Close Range' a fast and very compelling read. From the opening lines of "The Half-Skinned Steer" to the close of "Brokeback Mountain", 'Close Range' is a solid page turner. Small wonder that John Updike included "The Half-Skinned Steer" in 'The Best American Short Stories of the Century', and "Brokeback Mountain" has now been turned into a movie. And how heartfelt each story is! Each story provokes a deep emotional response, and "Brokeback Mountain" is a beautiful, though heartbreaking, cap to the collection. Proulx's total mastery of the short story form makes for an enjoyable, highly reccomendable read.
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More About the Author

Annie Proulx's The Shipping News won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the National Book Award for Fiction, and the Irish Times International Fiction Prize. She is the author of two other novels: Postcards, winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award, and Accordion Crimes. She has also written two collections of short stories, Heart Songs and Other Stories and Close Range. In 2001, The Shipping News was made into a major motion picture. Annie Proulx lives in Wyoming and Newfoundland.

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