Northern Lights and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
  • List Price: $15.00
  • Save: $4.77 (32%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 8 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Northern Lights has been added to your Cart
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Solid used copy with visible wear. FREE SHIPPING w/AMAZON PRIME!
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Northern Lights Paperback – September 1, 1999


See all 21 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
$10.23
$4.24 $0.01
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"

The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Check out The Amazon Book Review, our editors' fresh new blog featuring interviews with authors, book reviews, quirky essays on book trends, and regular columns by our editors. Explore now
$10.23 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 8 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

Northern Lights + Going After Cacciato + In the Lake of the Woods
Price for all three: $35.59

Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Review

"The suspense is spellbinding.. . . What puts this tale above countless others is the care and eloquence of Tim O'Brien."
—Chicago Sun-Times

"Northern Lights is a thrilling story . . . which can be read and enjoyed simply as an adventure story, but digs deeper than that."
—Irish Times

"Gripping and convincing. . . . Northern Lights is an impressive first novel."
—Times Literary Supplement

"O'Brien writes superbly, he also has a wonderful ear for ordinary American idiom and the ability to fine-tune its innate rhythms, cadences, and imagery into an authentic popular poetry."
—The Guardian

"Haunting. . . . Survival, courage, and heroes are examined beautifully and simply."
Publishers Weekly

From the Inside Flap

Originally published in 1975, Tim O'Brien's debut novel demonstrates the emotional complexity and enthralling narrative tension that later earned him the National Book Award. At its core is the relationship between two brothers: one who went to Vietnam and one who stayed at home. As the two brothers struggle against an unexpected blizzard in Minnesota's remote north woods, what they discover about themselves and each other will change both of them for ever.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

"The Evening Chorus" by Helen Humphreys
From a writer of delicate and incandescent prose, "The Evening Chorus" offers a beautiful, spare examination of the natural world and the human heart. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 372 pages
  • Publisher: Broadway Books; Reprint edition (September 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0767904419
  • ISBN-13: 978-0767904414
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.8 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #260,711 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

TIM O'BRIEN received the 1979 National Book Award in fiction for Going After Cacciato. His other works include the acclaimed novels The Things They Carried and July, July. In the Lake of the Woods received the James Fenimore Cooper Prize from the Society of American Historians and was named the best novel of 1994 by Time. O'Brien lives in Austin, Texas.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

(What's this?)

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 28, 1999
Format: Paperback
A fascinating look at the complex relationship between two brothers, one of whom fought in Vietnam, Northern Lights also examines other issues. I enjoyed this book a lot, but O'Brien's other works are better. After all, this *was* his first published novel. In fact, O'Brien himself has said that he wishes he should have made intense revisions to this book. Regardless, read Northern Lights only after you have read O'Brien's other books. I am a true O'Brien fan who has read ALL of his books, and I DID enjoy this book. But save it for after you have learned to appreciate O'Brien and his literary style.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By ChiefSanch on December 19, 2002
Format: Paperback
Excellent debut novel, but Tim O'Brien only got better. All of his tension and emotion in present in this novel, but he still had yet to develope his style and language that has made him, in my opinion, one of America's best writers today.
It's a story about privacy. Private lives at home and secret romances of sorts and the return of a Vietnam vet who has a constant reminder of his time In Country, but he never tells the secret of how he received the injury to his ear.
It's an excellent debut novel, but don't be discouraged if this is the first Tim O'Brien novel you read, he only get's better. I give it my highest recommendation.
It's adventurous and tense when the brothers are lost in the woods. O'Brien paints an impressive picture of the Minnesota woods when these brothers travel at the feet of these enormous snow covered trees in awe and reverence of nature.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By lisatheratgirl VINE VOICE on October 1, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Tim O'Brien is an award-winning writer and I have really enjoyed some of his other novels. This is his first, written in 1975. I recommend reading Tim O'Brien, but don't start with this one. You may get turned off early and miss out on something really good. After slogging through the first half of this book, I almost pitched it. Nothing happens, even when there is a big buildup to make you think something is finally going to happen. The writing style is poor. There is endless repitition, uninspired description "It was very hot," bad grammar and other irritants.

THEN, I read the second half and was plunged into an action-adventure-survival drama with two brothers fighting for their lives in a whited-out northern Minnesota forest in January. The style didn't improve, but I didn't care. In many ways this book seemed to me the forerunner of his bestseller In the Lake of the Woods, which I highly recommend. Don't pass this one by, either. Skip or skim the first part if you feel the way I did. He gets a lot better as he goes along.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 21, 1999
Format: Paperback
O'Brien presents the tension between brothers in layers beginning with the vitnam war. As the story unfolds, O'Brien challenges the reader to think about their pasts and pending futures. The book kept me thinking long after I put it down. Even as I write this reveiw, I am considering new implications to their realtionship. Nothern Lights is a very thoughtful and enjoyable read.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By RCM VINE VOICE on October 19, 2006
Format: Paperback
Through more recent critically acclaimed works, Tim O'Brien has established himself as an author to be reckoned with; he is able to craft stories that are beguiling and sobering, hooking readers from the very start. "Northern Lights" is O'Brien's debut novel, published originally in 1975, and it reads like a first novel, raw with possible revision needed. Yet for those who have read other O'Brien works it is still a fascinating and telling look at the voice he would later develop.

As usual, the undercurrent of Vietnam is present in "Northern Lights". It is the tale of two brothers and how they disconnect and reconnect after one returns home from war. Harvey Perry, the soldier, was always the beloved son; the youngest child, seemingly revered by their father. Paul Perry, the older son, was always the beleaguered son; meant to follow in his father's footsteps, but not wanting to be like the old man. The brothers consistently found themselves at odds with each other, especially when it came to their father. When Harvey returns from Vietnam, the brothers are forced to confront the differences they had, and the false impressions they have grown up believing to be true. This happens while the brothers are trapped in a blizzard during a ski trip through the Minnesota north woods; lost for weeks on end, they must rely upon one another to make it out, and roles easily become reversed.

O'Brien is a master storyteller; his novels are full of poetic observations about the miniutae of everyday life peppered with dialogue and characters that are vividly realistic. It is easy to see "Northern Lights" as a first novel; the blizzard that traps the brothers in the woods also traps the readers. As Paul Perry blunders and wanders about, the narrative is rambling and unfocused.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Nate on February 2, 2006
Format: Paperback
Northern Lights by Tim O'Brien was not the most exciting novel I've ever read but worth reading nonetheless. It is a story about two brothers, one who is adventurous and athletic and eventually serves in the Vietnam War and the other who chooses not to participate in any physical or outdoor activities. As adults the brothers decide to take a cross-country ski trip and end up lost in a blizzard in the remote woods of Minnesota. The plot sounds like a story of great excitement and suspense. As a matter of fact, the front cover of the book says `The suspense is spellbinding", so why would I think otherwise? In my opinion it really isn't a suspenseful story at all. It is much more a story of the relationship between the brothers than a story of survival in the woods of Minnesota. O'Brien's slow and calm tone throughout the story eliminates any suspense caused by the drastic circumstances the men find themselves in. The brothers overcome several grueling situations, but the tone O'Brien uses minimizes the danger compared to the unfolding relationship between the brothers. I believe this was O'Brien's intention from the start. Instead of a story of survival, he wanted to tell a story of two brothers. He exemplifies this lifelong journey by the use of irony. Harvey, being the outdoorsman, controls the ski trip from the beginning much like he did every adventure in their childhood. The introverted Perry effectively steps into the role of `big brother' once Harvey becomes too ill to survive on his own. Perry is ultimately responsible for their survival.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
Northern Lights
This item: Northern Lights
Price: $15.00 $10.23
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?