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Nightwoods: A Novel Paperback – June 12, 2012
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A Letter from Author Charles Frazier
“Incantatory prose . . . unexpected twists of plot . . . a look at the nature of good and evil and how those forces ebb and flow over time.”—The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
“Nightwoods propels forward at a suspenseful clip. . . . It is Frazier’s verisimilitude of North Carolina backwoods and how this particular place shapes his characters and their footing in his imagined world that bring this story alive.”—San Francisco Chronicle
“Wonderful . . . There’s a dreamy spell set in motion by Frazier’s devotion to his native Appalachians. To read this book is to disappear deep into a meticulously created landscape.”—The Christian Science Monitor
“A gorgeously written thriller, as brutal and unflinching yet tender and merciful as nature itself.”—Richmond Times-Dispatch
“A gritty new beauty of a novel . . . Its hero is a woman named Luce, and no woman could write a female character who rings any truer.”—The Philadelphia Inquirer
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Frazier weaves together an atmospheric story using believable dialogue and vivid descriptions of rural Appalachia. It sometimes feels like every word of every sentence has been carefully constructed to pull the reader in. The characters are realistic and fascinating, the plot is intense and it's a real page turner. A beautifully written book, highly recommended.
This is the story of a reclusive woman in the hills of North Carolina who suddenly has her twin niece and nephew thrust upon her. We know immediately that Luce's sister's children are not normal - they do not speak. Luce is undaunted, if not enthusiastic about losing her reclusive and independent life. We then learn something about her sister, her brother-in-law and the son of the man who owned where she lived. Believe it or not, that is the first 200 pages of this 260 page novel.
The writing is wonderful and the descriptive passages are stuff of creative writing classes. The plot - such as it is - plods and plods. Suddenly in the last 60 pages or so the story picks up and (with a few dull overly descriptive interludes) becomes a page-turner. If only the entire book was like this it would be a classic on the order of say, COLD MOUNTAIN.
Luce is a terrifically interesting character. She is a character with depth and uniqueness. As the book slowly peels the onion skin away from her past she becomes the even more intriguing.
The rest of the characters are pretty cardboard cut-out: the psychotic brother-in-law, the son of the landowner and the truly stereotypical independent elderly neighbor with the potions and the wisdom of the ages.
The book is saved by the incredibly interesting writing. Just as the reader is ready to throw the book out of the window, a plot suddenly appears.
One quirky point. Where did all the quotation marks go? Spoken lines are indicated by a dash starting the paragraph, unless they are not. Most spoke lines start with a dash, but others are buried in the paragraph.Read more ›
I would describe Luce as the type of person I would personally want to hang out with, if she were real, that is. As uncomfortable as she is in her own skin, she never once compromises herself and her values for those around her. Her voice is authentic and rings from page one. I felt myself identifying with her and her plight, keeping me entranced by the story as I desperately turned the pages to find out what happened next in her life.
Charles Frazier is a favorite author of mine, and this book does not disappoint. With a rich story and Frazier's remarkable talents as a storyteller, the story is a can't miss tale that takes you to Appalachia and surrounds you immediately with rich prose and an amazing story. And I loved trying the bacon with popcorn mentioned in the book. That alone is worth some praise.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not as enjoyable as Frazier's other works. Nightwoods is set in the South in the 50s but in many respects evoked an atmosphere that could have been two decades earlier.Published 2 days ago by The Raven Summons
This is a wonderfully written book with a compelling story. Frazier is clearly a southern U.S. writer,so I learned a few things about the south I otherwise wouldn't have known. Read morePublished 7 days ago by Michael E. Gilbertson
I really enjoyed this heartwarming story of a troubled young woman who takes over the responsibility of her late sister's traumatized children. Read morePublished 22 days ago by Happy Customer
A never ending suspense of many characters whose descriptions are so colorful you can see them like a color photo! Read morePublished 28 days ago by Luanne
'Nightwoods' by Charles Frazier is essentially a character study of folks who live in the NC mountains circa 1960. Read morePublished 2 months ago by lazza
very good, but Bud should have gotten his in the end.
Get bud get bud get bud get bud get bud