Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “In the Loyal Mountains” as Want to Read:
In the Loyal Mountains
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

In the Loyal Mountains

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  220 ratings  ·  24 reviews
To quote the Los Angeles Times: "Impelled by a profound love of the land, the ten stories in In the Loyal Mountains are a reminder that American literature draws its unique strength from a powerful sense of place." In this luminous collection, Rick Bass firmly establishes himself as a master of the short story, with tales that embrace vibrant images of ordinary human life ...more
Paperback, 176 pages
Published September 15th 1997 by Mariner Books (first published 1995)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about In the Loyal Mountains, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about In the Loyal Mountains

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 360)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
I had to read the first story again, “The History of Rodney.” Rodney, Mississippi: “The slow summer. The time when nothing moves forward, when everything pauses, and then stops. It’s a good idea.” The river is gone, the pigs are cursed generals, the town is twelve people.
“This place isn’t on the map, right?” Elizabeth will ask. It’s a game we play. We’re frightened of cities, of other people.
“It might as well not even exist,” I’ll tell her.
She seems reassured.
But, next is “Swamp Boy,” and I ca
Michael Whitaker
I really liked this collection of stories. I could read "The History of Rodney" again and again and again. It's a hard story to follow. Still, I loved "Swamp Boy," "Fires." "The Wait," and "In the Loyal Mountains" would be included among my favorites, as well.

Rick Bass is such an interesting writer to me. I'm going to be on the hunt for "The Stars, The Sky, The Wilderness" and "Platte River." I feel like I'd be enamored by the fully realized worlds he creates for longer pieces and I think the n
Andy Miller
A great collection of Rick Bass short stories published in 1995. My favorites were the ones set in the Yaak Valley. "Fires" centered on a Yaak resident who is hired to help a world class runner who came to the Yaak to train by biking behind her with a gun in case a bear decided to join the chase. The two develop a friendship amidst the simplicity and wonder of the Yaak valley life, the scenes of her running are among the best writing of running I've ever read

"The Valley"is somewhat a travelogue
I think I read this too fast. All of the stories had a similar tone which I couldn't possibly put into words. Needs to be savored over time, otherwise the wonder is lost.

History of Rodney, the first story, is my favorite. A sleepy, hot, forgotten town in the south with a handful of old and lost, crazy pigs and a river somewhere out there.
I'd heard Bass' "Fires" read aloud on the radio one day, and since it was about a woman moving up to WA state to do some trail running, it seemed right up my alley.

I really enjoyed a few of these stories - "Fires", "The Legend of Pig-Eye", "In the Loyal Mountains", and especially "Days of Heaven". All of them were worth reading, and he does a really good job of painting some vivid and believable mountain/wilderness scenes. Some of the scenes are almost mythic-seeming, and still stick with me -
One of the best short story collections I've come across. It's hard not to see it as a book about men - in cold wilderness, in small towns, living simple lives with simple affairs of life and women and work. It's both lyrical and plainly written. Their structure is perfection - they draw you in, you find yourself in their rhythm, then they hit you hard in the end; my breath was taken away at the end of a few.
I met the author in a reading at Powell's. He signed my book in 1995 when the book first came out.
I just re read three of his short stories in one sitting. 'Fires', 'Antlers', and 'Valley' are beautiful stories. I like short stories for the simple reason that it get to the point with metaphors and not clutter it up with too many details or side stories. 'Fire' is a metaphor for the relationship between the Runner, and the Narrator. I think of Hemingway and some of his Nick Adams stories
Book of short stories. All centered around naturalist settings- but each one includes a slice of life thread that should make them appealing to anyone- even if you don't care about the nature and the outdoors. Bass writing skills rank up there with the best of the best. His sentences flow smoothly; his sense of rhythm is perfect and he never misses a note.
This collection is uneven, but there are a few stunning stories that make it a worthwhile read. Bass's use of the first person is deceptively simple but takes on a mythic quality. Very authoritative and you can easily lose yourself in the landscapes and characters he writes about. The title story is heartbreaking.
Each story that Bass writes has its own unique touch to it, though they each have a similar setting. It is this quality that makes each one a joy to read... narrative descriptions of different facets of life in the same place. 'Fires' and 'Swamp Boy' stood out for me, in particular.
Rick Bass is responsible for some of the most evocative, lyrical, and often muscular-without-being -turgid-or-macho prose today. 'The History of Rodney' alone is worth the price of admission. People who like Cormac McCarthy ought to try reading a *real* writer in Rick Bass.
Tattered Cover Book Store
This book was recomended by novelist and book editor Jenny Shank as part of the Rocky Mountain Land Library's "A Reading List For the President Elect: A Western Primer for the Next Administration."
A very good book, but sometimes it seems to lose its way in heavy-handed attempts at the, um...esoteric? I found that at times the stories were a bit to conscious of themselves, if that makes any sense.
Was curious to see that he gives a shout out to Jim Harrison on the dedication page and then proceeds to write ever constricting circles around him. Bass is so the writer that Harrison secretly wishes he was.
I loved this book. The Watch is also one of my favorites, and it was interesting to revisit Kirby in Houston. If there was a fire at my house, I'd grab all my Rick Bass books first.
I enjoy a good short story every now and again. And these were good short stories. But not great short stories--because they still made me wish they were full novels.
Marjorie Hudson
One of my all time favorite books that link character and place, mostly in the west. Gorgeous prose.
Jacob Andra
Vivid, dream-like and visceral, each story in this collection leaves a lasting impression!
I really enjoy Rick Bass short stories and their descriptions of the natural world.
carl  theaker

Mostly thoughtful stories, tries a little too hard to make
a tale 'catchy' at times.
If you want to learn how to write setting in a short story, read this book.
I love Rick Bass.

That said, he is at his best in his short fiction.
Lovely stories, as usual.
Meg Franklin
Jul 02, 2007 Meg Franklin rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: the whole world
I adored this book.
Amberjohnson4325 marked it as to-read
Dec 25, 2014
Stina Olofsson-jackson
Stina Olofsson-jackson marked it as to-read
Dec 11, 2014
Scott Stringer
Scott Stringer marked it as to-read
Dec 06, 2014
Steven Chang
Steven Chang marked it as to-read
Dec 05, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Gallatin Canyon
  • I Hate To See That Evening Sun Go Down: Collected Stories
  • High Lonesome
  • Another Turn of the Crank
  • Shiloh and Other Stories
  • Fay
  • The Gospel Singer
  • Finding a Girl in America
  • In Suspect Terrain
  • Field Notes: The Grace Note of the Canyon Wren
  • Wolf Whistle
  • The Sound of Mountain Water
  • Jennifer Love Hewitt Times Infinity
  • Desert Quartet: An Erotic Landscape
  • The Pine Island Paradox
  • Museums & Women And Other Stories
  • True North
Rick Bass was born in Fort Worth, Texas, and grew up in Houston, the son of a geologist. He studied petroleum geology at Utah State University and while working as a petroleum geologist in Jackson, Mississippi, began writing short stories on his lunch breaks. In 1987, he moved with his wife, the artist Elizabeth Hughes Bass, to Montana’s remote Yaak Valley and became an active environmentalist, wo ...more
More about Rick Bass...
Winter: Notes from  Montana The Watch The Ninemile Wolves The Sky, the Stars, the Wilderness The Hermit's Story: Stories

Share This Book