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Goodnight, Nebraska Paperback – June 1, 1999
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Appearances can be deceiving, however. To Randall and his wife, Marcy, Goodnight seems like the last place on earth; he never imagined himself coming here, she never stopped dreaming about getting out. Much of McNeal's novel has to do with the gradual disintegration of Randall and Marcy's marriage; at the same time it limns a warm portrait of a middle-American town that may not be very exciting to live in, but one where people know they can count on each other in a pinch. It takes Marcy leaving--and Randall going after her--to finally teach them both that there's really no place like Goodnight. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Tom McNeal's novel tells the story of Randall Hunsacker and his seemingly dysfunctional life. Beginning in Utah and the shooting of his mother's boyfriend, Randall gets another chance at life when offered free room and board and a spot on the high school football team in Goodnight, Nebraska. While there, in addition to being feared and admired by his teammates, Randall falls in love with Marcy Lockhardt, a beautiful and popular cheerleader. What progresses afterward is a slowly unfolding story of the love, loss, friendship, loyalty and betrayal experienced not only by Randall, but by those that surround him.
I was captivated by this novel and hated putting it down so I could work and sleep. Tom McNeal has captured the perfect small town tapestry, where everyone knows your business and nothing goes unnoticed. Teen angst is only one small part of this terrifically moving story. A novel of surprising depth and honesty -- I loved it!
To those who say this is not a novel, I say shame on you, especially if you are a writer. This book clearly follows the fates of Randall and Marcy, and if you don't realize how other characters come along for the ride in life, then you are not living. This novel is more real than most I've read in a long time....why?Read more ›
Randall, the young protagonist, contracts into a self-protective stoniness as he fetches up here on his own like a shipwreck victim. Marcy, the girl who becomes his sweetheart, strives for a hard-won personal independence from her hard-working farmer parents. Their late-night lovemaking and eventual marriage are an against-all-odds attempt to save themselves from being swallowed up by the indifference of the natural world and the conventional expectations of the small town world they inhabit.
What pleased me most about this book was how often it took unexpected turns. Given the explosiveness of young Randall's character, his insensitiviy, and his distrust of others, his growth to manhood, steady and responsible, is a welcome surprise. So is his loyalty to Marcy and his willingness to regard her as an equal in love and marriage, even letting her leave him for an adventure of her own in California. Her discovery of him asleep in his pickup, parked in the driveway at her apartment house, the smell of rural Nebraska still filling the cab, is a wonderful moment of the bond that holds them together and to their home.
Another long sequence in the novel describes a hunting party that grows progressively unnerving, as some of the more trigger-happy in the group get steadily drunker and more frustrated at the lack of game.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting portrayal of characters. There are many personalities with whom readers can identify. Since I am from western Nebraska, I enjoyed the references to places I know.Published 16 months ago by Elizabeth Bourn
Wow! Wow! Wow! What a book! This richly woven tale of lives young, old and middle-aged in a small Nebraska town is really the story of humanity. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Cathryn Conroy
Great story about what it's like to live in a small town in the midwest. The story makes you look at your life a little closer after seeing what everyone was going through.Published 23 months ago by Rhonda
Amazing book and amazing author. The characters are carefully crafted.Published 24 months ago by 061020
Lately, I've been reading everything thing he writes; I enjoy his writing style immensely. Now I am reading his wife's books. Not to be missed, either. Read morePublished on February 20, 2014 by blaine
Like author's writing style. Because I lived a few years in the midwest, can identify with the setting and characters.Published on August 5, 2013 by Lynn Miller
First I read To Be Sung Underwater, twice in one week. Then I read Goodnight, Nebraska, am on second reading of that this week. Read morePublished on July 2, 2013 by Alison