Denis Johnson’s Train Dreams, a novella shortlisted as a ‘Best Book of 2011’ by almost everyone from the New York Times to Esquire, and also considered for the Pulitzer, is a haunting little book that blossoms from the vine of American history. Spanning from the turn of the 20th century up until the late 60s, Johnson positions the reader to watch as the American west is transfigured by the technological growth of the n ...more
A solid story, sad and satisfying, one which might, initially, provoke feelings of déjà vu in those who’ve read A Prayer for the Dying.
An American mountain man, stoic and self-sufficient, enjoys an all too brief period of love and intimacy before tragedy and loss impose, and he’s left to fend for and only for himself. Johnson’s gentle prose resists a stereotype, rendering the protagonist credible and admirable. The inevitable wolf-girl scene defies belief but situates the story in a mythic trad...more
The story of this man (this Country?) is told in sepia-toned, non-linear vignettes. His Asian adventure (if you want to read somet ...more
Told in a spare ...more
The main protagonist is a man of good virtue he is on the straight and narrow, due to many things he has witnessed and taking account of. One ...more
Aí nos mostram outro mundo, outra época, outra gente, outras vidas tão distantes da nossa e, simultaneamente, tão perto pelas suas tristezas, pelos seus desejos e, acima de tudo, pelo manter dos sonhos, que alimentam a capacidade de sobrevivência do ser humano.
No fim, libertam-nos deixando-nos o coração em cacos.
Roubo, para aqui, a opinião do Luis Miguel que, tal como eu, teve a sorte de "tropeçar" em Denis Johnson:
Robert Grainier is a man without a known beginning—at least, he didn’t know hi ...more
Train Dreams reflects on the life of Robert Grainier, who works on the railroads, forests, and roads of the Moyea Valley, rougly somewhere in the Idaho ...more
I mean it.
It's a novella, and a short one at that, so it'll only take you an hour or two.
So you really should read it now.
I see some of you still aren't reading it.
You there in the back!
The one smoking a joint.
And the other one with spots.
If you don't start reading it now I'll have all of you shot!
Novellas can often be underwhelming, there is so little time to be hooked by the narrative, to fall for the characters.
For a good half of this reading I was thinking small, small, small. Tiny splinters aggravating the surface of the imagination.
I think Grainer's wolf howling was the fulcrum and suddenly I was right there amid the charred wilderness, four walls and no roof.
Later as the years unfold and Grainer's bones fist and knot, none of it feels like dying. Some of what goes on stills read ...more
Grainier himself lived more than eighty years, well into the 1960s. In his time he'd traveled west to within a few dozen miles of the Pacific, though he'd never seen the ocean itself, and as far east as the town of Libby, forty miles inside Montana. He'd had one lover -- his wife, Gladys -- owned one acre of property, two horses, and a wagon. He'd never been drunk. He'd never purchased a firearm or spoken into a telephone. He'd ridden on trains regularly, many...more
It's an act in spite of myself. Selfishness of my conscience. I need an outlet, and books are fine prompts. I also often feel guilty when all I have to contribute after the effort of reading the thing is a single click to highlight some stars. Maybe this will assuage my discomfort, or I'll be ridiculed out of it. The plan ...more
What really brought this to a five star rating was the dream Grainier had of his wife. I was reminded of Toni Morrison's "Beloved" and to equal ...more
And that, in the end, was the problem with the book for me. It was TOO short. I was too aware of its length for the entire duration of the book, finding myself at certain points thinking, "Why did he waste five pages on THAT character? HE DOESN'T HAVE FIVE PAGES TO WASTE". It was also one of those books that ...more
UNEXPECTED BONUS: was just griping to my mom how all the books that are thrown at us from NYC and the east coast in general come from people who are so distant and in such a different country that they don't understand how often people get their dicks sucked by calves (and other bestiality that happens with regularity outside of Manhattan). And she laughed and laughed and told me about how my great grandpa got caught with ...more
Johnson pulled me into a story set at the beginning of the 20th Century about a man who works on a r ...more
While at times I felt distant from Mr. Robert Grainier, bridge-builder/homesteader/tree-feller/hermit (Okay ...more
|Deep, real reads: Train Dreams||1||4||Jul 28, 2013 12:20AM|
|21st Century Lite...: Chapter 3||10||27||Jul 10, 2013 11:26PM|
|21st Century Lite...: * Train Dreams General Comments (spoilers ALLOWED!)||72||67||Jul 04, 2013 03:56AM|
|21st Century Lite...: Chapter 9||5||18||Jun 26, 2013 04:52AM|
|21st Century Lite...: Train Dreams Chapter 1||28||56||Jun 25, 2013 01:42AM|
|21st Century Lite...: Chapter 2||17||25||Jun 21, 2013 12:14AM|
|21st Century Lite...: * The book as a whole||1||24||Jun 03, 2013 02:26AM|