♥ Book Title : English Creek
☯ Full Synopsis : "In this prize-winning portrait of a time and place—Montana in the 1930s—that at once inspires and fulfills a longing for an explicable past, Ivan Doig has created one of the most captivating families in American fiction, the McCaskills. The witty and haunting narration, a masterpiece of vernacular in the tradition of Twain, follows the events of the Two Medicine country's summer: the tide of sheep moving into the high country, the capering Fourth of July rodeo and community dance, and an end-of-August forest fire high in the Rockies that brings the book, as well as the McCaskill family's struggle within itself, to a stunning climax. It is a season of escapade as well as drama, during which fourteen-year-old Jick comes of age. Through his eyes we see those nearest and dearest to him at a turning point—“where all four of our lives made their bend”—and discover along with him his own connection to the land, to history, and to the deep-fathomed mysteries of one’s kin and one’s self."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
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♥ Book Title : Mountain Time
☯ Full Synopsis : "At fifty-something, environmental reporter Mitch Rozier has grown estranged from Seattle's coffee shop and cyber culture. His newspaper is going under, and his relationship with Lexa McCaskill is stalled at "just living together." Then, he is summoned by his sly, exasperating father, Lyle, back to the family land, which Lyle plans to sell in the latest of his get-rich schemes before dying. Lexa follows, accompanied by her sister Mariah, and the stage is set for long-overdue confrontations -- between lovers, sisters, and father and son. Mountain Time is distinguished by humor and a wry insight into the power of family feuds to mark individuals and endure. Set against the glorious backdrop of Montana mountain country, it is a dazzling novel of love, family, and the contemporary West."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Dancing at the Rascal Fair
☯ Full Synopsis : "The central volume in Ivan Doig's acclaimed Montana trilogy, Dancing at the Rascal Fair is an authentic saga of the American experience at the turn of this century and a passionate, portrayal of the immigrants who dared to try new lives in the imposing Rocky Mountains. Ivan Doig's supple tale of landseekers unfolds into a fateful contest of the heart between Anna Ramsay and Angus McCaskill, walled apart by their obligations as they and their stormy kith and kin vie to tame the brutal, beautiful Two Medicine country."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : The Bartender's Tale
☯ Full Synopsis : "From a great American storyteller, a one-of-a-kind father and his precocious son, rocked by a time of change. Tom Harry has a streak of frost in his black pompadour and a venerable bar called The Medicine Lodge, the chief watering hole and last refuge of the town of Gros Ventre, in northern Montana. Tom also has a son named Rusty, an “accident between the sheets” whose mother deserted them both years ago.The pair make an odd kind of family, with the bar their true home, but they manage just fine. Until the summer of 1960, that is, when Rusty turns twelve. Change arrives with gale force, in the person of Proxy, a taxi dancer Tom knew back when, and her beatnik daughter, Francine. Is Francine, as Proxy claims, the unsuspected legacy of her and Tom’s past? Without a doubt she is an unsettling gust of the future, upending every certainty in Rusty’s life and generating a mist of passion and pretense that seems to obscure everyone’s vision but his own. As Rusty struggles to decipher the oddities of adult behavior and the mysteries build toward a reckoning, Ivan Doig wonderfully captures how the world becomes bigger and the past becomes more complex in the last moments of childhood."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : This House of Sky
☯ Full Synopsis : "A haunting, magnificently written memoir by Ivan Doig about growing up in the American West Ivan Doig grew up in the rugged wilderness of western Montana among the sheepherders and denizens of small-town saloons and valley ranches. What he deciphers from his past with piercing clarity is not only a raw sense of land and how it shapes us but also of the ties to our mothers and fathers, to those who love us, and our inextricable connection to those who shaped our values in our search for intimacy, independence, love, and family. A powerfully told story, This House of Sky is at once especially American and universal in its ability to awaken a longing for an explicable past."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Heart Earth
☯ Full Synopsis : "Ivan Doig’s companion memoir to his bestselling This House of Sky—inspired by the letters his mother wrote during World War II—is “a lyrical evocation of the Doigs’ gallantly hardscrabble existence and love for the unforgiving Montana mountains” (San Francisco Chronicle). Raised by his father and maternal grandmother, Ivan Doig grew up with only a vague memory of his mother, who died on his sixth birthday. Then he discovered a cache of her letters, and through them, a spunky, passionate, can-do woman emerged. His mother was as at home in the saddle as behind a sewing machine, and as in love with language as her son. In this prize-winning prequel to his acclaimed memoir This House of Sky, Doig brings to life his childhood before his mother’s death, and the family’s journey from the Montana mountains to the Arizona desert and back again. “Profoundly original and lustrous,” (Kirkus Reviews) Doig eloquently captures the texture of the American West during and after World War II, the fortune of a family, and one woman’s indomitable spirit. Doig is “a colloquial stylist without equal…and Heart Earth is a book that repeatedly proves the power of language” (Los Angeles Times)."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : The Whistling Season
☯ Full Synopsis : "Can't cook but doesn't bite." So begins the newspaper ad offering the services of an "A-1 housekeeper, sound morals, exceptional disposition" that draws the hungry attention of widower Oliver Milliron in the fall of 1909. And so begins the unforgettable season that deposits the noncooking, nonbiting, ever-whistling Rose Llewellyn and her font-of-knowledge brother, Morris Morgan, in Marias Coulee along with a stampede of homesteaders drawn by the promise of the Big Ditch-a gargantuan irrigation project intended to make the Montana prairie bloom. When the schoolmarm runs off with an itinerant preacher, Morris is pressed into service, setting the stage for the "several kinds of education"-none of them of the textbook variety-Morris and Rose will bring to Oliver, his three sons, and the rambunctious students in the region's one-room schoolhouse. A paean to a vanished way of life and the eccentric individuals and idiosyncratic institutions that made it fertile, The Whistling Season is Ivan Doig at his evocative best."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : The Sea Runners
☯ Full Synopsis : "In 1853, in the farthest outpost of the Czar’s empire, four Scandinavian indentured servants—seven-year men no better off than slaves—resolve to escape from Russian Alaska. They steal an Indian canoe and point it south toward Astoria, in Oregon, twelve hundred miles away. This novel of audacity is based on a historical incident discovered by the author, and transformed by his imagination into a sustained sweep of adventure. The four sea runners must weather the worst the ill-named Pacific can throw at them, and must weather their own fierce squalls, too, as day upon day, guided as much by instinct and determination as by map, they paddle through the magnificent maze of the Northwest Coast toward the mouth of the Columbia River."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Winter Brothers
☯ Full Synopsis : "A blend of modern-day travel memoir and nineteenth-century history, “infused with the fresh air and spirit of the Northwest” (The New York Times Book Review). The author of the acclaimed This House of Sky and Mountain Time provides a magnificent evocation of the Pacific Northwest through his exploration of the unpublished diaries of James Gilchrist Swan, an early settler of the region who was drawn there from Boston in the 1850s. Winter Brothers fuses excerpts from these diaries with author Ivan Doig’s own journal entries, as he travels in Swan’s footsteps one winter along the once-wild coastline of Puget Sound and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. What emerges is a remarkable interaction of two minds, a dialogue across time that links the present with the reality of the American frontier. “Absorbing . . . A double portrait of striking clarity, yet with wonderfully subtle hues.” —San Francisco Chronicle"Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Work Song
☯ Full Synopsis : "An award-winning and beloved novelist of the American West spins the further adventures of a favorite character, in one of his richest historical settings yet. "If America was a melting pot, Butte would be its boiling point," observes Morrie Morgan, the itinerant teacher, walking encyclopedia, and inveterate charmer last seen leaving a one-room schoolhouse in Marias Coulee, the stage he stole in Ivan Doig's 2006 The Whistling Season. A decade later, Morrie is back in Montana, as the beguiling narrator of Work Song. Lured like so many others by "the richest hill on earth," Morrie steps off the train in Butte, copper-mining capital of the world, in its jittery heyday of 1919. But while riches elude Morrie, once again a colorful cast of local characters-and their dramas-seek him out: a look-alike, sound-alike pair of retired Welsh miners; a streak-of-lightning waif so skinny that he is dubbed Russian Famine; a pair of mining company goons; a comely landlady propitiously named Grace; and an eccentric boss at the public library, his whispered nickname a source of inexplicable terror. When Morrie crosses paths with a lively former student, now engaged to a fiery young union leader, he is caught up in the mounting clash between the iron-fisted mining company, radical "outside agitators," and the beleaguered miners. And as tensions above ground and below reach the explosion point, Morrie finds a unique way to give a voice to those who truly need one. Watch a Video"Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Ivan Doig
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♥ Book Title : Last Bus to Wisdom
☯ Full Synopsis : "Named a Best Book of the Year by the Seattle Times and Kirkus Review The final novel from a great American storyteller. Donal Cameron is being raised by his grandmother, the cook at the legendary Double W ranch in Ivan Doig’s beloved Two Medicine Country of the Montana Rockies, a landscape that gives full rein to an eleven-year-old’s imagination. But when Gram has to have surgery for “female trouble” in the summer of 1951, all she can think to do is to ship Donal off to her sister in faraway Manitowoc, Wisconsin. There Donal is in for a rude surprise: Aunt Kate–bossy, opinionated, argumentative, and tyrannical—is nothing like her sister. She henpecks her good-natured husband, Herman the German, and Donal can’t seem to get on her good side either. After one contretemps too many, Kate packs him back to the authorities in Montana on the next Greyhound. But as it turns out, Donal isn’t traveling solo: Herman the German has decided to fly the coop with him. In the immortal American tradition, the pair light out for the territory together, meeting a classic Doigian ensemble of characters and having rollicking misadventures along the way. Charming, wise, and slyly funny, Last Bus to Wisdom is a last sweet gift from a writer whose books have bestowed untold pleasure on countless readers. From the Hardcover edition."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Bucking the Sun
☯ Full Synopsis : "Bucking the Sun is the story of the Duff family, homesteaders driven from the Montana bottomland to work on one of the New Deal’s most audacious projects—the damming of the Missouri River. Through the story of each family member—a wrathful father, a mettlesome mother, and three very different sons, and the memorable women they marry—Doig conveys a sense of time and place that is at once epic in scope and rich in detail."Article| Ivan Doig| Statement ..."