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The Son Kindle Edition
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|Length: 577 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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Top Customer Reviews
Author Philipp Meyer's magnificent stylistic gifts, which I first discovered in his debut novel American Rust: A Novel [DECKLE EDGE] (Hardcover), are deployed once again to maximum advantage to give full expression to the heart and soul of the American Western Frontier. Profound with anthropological, cultural and social subtexts, the commanding narrative of THE SON, in the refreshing absence of hyperbole and Western clichés, tells a realistic story built upon tension, tragedy and violence to transform an Old World into the New.
I was so captivated by the lives and doings of the McCullough family, the Comanche Indians and the other interconnected families on both sides of the Texas/Mexico border of this story, that for the past few days I've found myself in an altered state of mind, doing little else but reading this novel as fast as I could but not wanting it to end. When I did reach the last page yesterday, THE SON continued to gallop full speed across the plains of my imagination. I have yet to come to a halt and the story continues to insinuate itself intellectually and emotionally into my mind.
THE SON may be a familiar story of the American West but the Philipp Meyer's voice is distinctly his own.Read more ›
What he has accomplished is sheer magic: he has turned the American dream on its ear and revealed it for what it really is: "soil to sand, fertile to barren, fruit to thorns." The most astounding thing is, you don't know how good it really is until you close the last page and step back and absorb what you have just experienced.
There are three key characters in this book: Colonel Eli McCullough, kidnapped by the Comanche tribe at an early age and forced to navigate the shaky ground between his life as a white settler and his life as a respected adoptee-turned-Comanche warrior...his son, Peter, the moral compass of the story who resorts to self-hatred after the massacre of his Mexican neighbors...and Peter's granddaughter Jeanne, a savvy oil woman who has profited mightily from the land.
In ways, the three represent a wholeness of the Texas story: the id, the ego, and the superego of history. Philipp Meyer weaves back and forth among their stories and each one is compelling in its own way. Eli's is sheer adrenalin, a boy-man who is only slightly bothered by the constraints of society or conscience. Jeanne is a girl-woman with a head for the family business in a time and place where women are considered secondary to men.
And Peter, ah, Peter. He is "The Son", the diarist who sees the moral shadings, who realizes that not all life is a matter of economics, that the strong should not be encouraged while the weak perish, and that we do have choices in our actions.Read more ›
More than just the story of a single family, "The Son" is a story of Texas. We see settlement and conflict between white settlers and the Commanche and then the Mexicans. We see the establishment of Statehood and the secession of the Civil War. We see the ups and downs of cattle ranching and oil.
The narrative is structured by rotating through the three POVs (points of view) - a chapter from Eli's perspective, a chapter from Peter's perspective, a chapter from Jeanne's perspective and then back to Eli, and so on. All three characters have engaging stories to tell. Eli's is the most exciting, dealing with events such as his capture by Commanche, serving as a Texas Ranger, fighting in the Civil War, and establishing his ranch. Peter's is the most intellectually engaging and as he struggles with the ethics and morality of his family and the other white settlers with regards to their treatment of Mexican neighbors. Jeanne's story is the most emotional as she struggles with establishing her place in both the ranching and oil businesses, in times where women didn't have a place in either.
Because Eli lives to be 100, he has roles in both Peter's and Jeanne's stories.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great book! I loved it and the three perspectives of this family story. It is also a good reminder that hello, there were people in this country before it ever was the United... Read morePublished 3 days ago by Mrs. OCH
Brilliant. I loved it as much as Lonesome Dove. ( Which is blasphemy, I know.) Rich, complex, vivid. I am a native Texan, and I couldn't have loved it more.Published 5 days ago by sandythornton
What a book. Can't believe I missed this when it came out! Got several friends and family reading it too.Published 6 days ago by Kati Maines
There were exciting parts in the book but the way each chapter jumped back and forth in time was confusing and the ending was anticlimactic. I'm glad there will be a TV series. Read morePublished 7 days ago by Pat Jarrells
This was, for the most part, a good read. It got confusing at times, but I didn't really mind going back to previous chapters to get all the characters straight in my mind. Read morePublished 8 days ago by kevan
Absolutely marveleous book. Great story, awful and utterly believable characters and credible period descriptions.Published 29 days ago by Loegtved
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