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The Hard Blue Sky

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  47 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
On the tiny Isle aux Chiens in the central coastal curve east of the tripartite mouth of the Mississippi, live the witty, resourceful and often inscrutable descendants of Louisiana's French-Spanish pioneers. They watch, they quarrel and they love, always beneath a hard, blue sky.
Paperback, 480 pages
Published March 1st 2001 by Lsu Press (first published 1955)
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Feb 19, 2016 Chrissie rated it it was amazing
I highly recommend this book. WOW!

It is for those readers who appreciate good writing rather than for those who want an exciting plot. There is excitement, but that is not why you pick this book. The ending is special; I loved it, but others may hate it. See the book like this - you pull back a curtain and glimpse another life, and then that curtain swings shut, and the book ends. Not everything is spelled out. And the future? Who knows for sure what the future will bring.

The focus is about bay
Kirk Smith
Dec 05, 2015 Kirk Smith rated it liked it
This is not my favorite Grau, but anyone with an interest in the barrier islands, vast grassy marshes, and intracoastal waters near the mouth of the Mississippi might think otherwise. On the surface it is a coming of age story of a teenage girl, set on a small barrier island populated by a fishing village of primarily French heritage. The writing is lovely, but the book is long-ish. There are many side stories, one a Romeo/Juliet, and another that's close to Lord of the Flies. One comparison as ...more
Oct 08, 2010 Yoby rated it it was amazing
Shelves: literary-fiction
Can already give this five stars. Have no idea why she faded into nowhere instead of being up there with Welty, O'Connor and Faulkner. Her descriptions of the land and of the way people talk and their attitudes towards life and death are flawless. Springs up right in front of your eyes so's you forget you are sitting in your own chair and it's a bit chilly in the room. You break out in a sweat with the heat of the place.

Now that's what I call a good read.
Robbi Freeman
Jun 05, 2015 Robbi Freeman rated it liked it
A totally 5 star book. The author has a true gift for words, description and writing. I love her books but there is no ending to this one. Why???
Feb 25, 2015 Anne rated it really liked it
Such a stoic look at women's lives from a time gone by.
Aug 14, 2012 Kathie rated it liked it
The slow pace of the story is perfect for the slow pace of life on the islands on the Delta. The reader can almost feel the heat and humidity. The community of fishermen is small enough that everyone knows everyone else's business and the reader learns about many of the main families. I was startled by the abrupt ending.
Jessie Kelly
Jun 02, 2010 Jessie Kelly rated it really liked it
Good rendition of life in coastal areas, very descriptive and good character development.
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Shirley Ann Grau (b. 1929) is a Pulitzer Prize–winning novelist of nine novels and short story collections, whose work is set primarily in her native South. Grau was raised in Alabama and Louisiana, and many of her novels document the broad social changes of the Deep South during the twentieth century, particularly as they affected African Americans. Grau’s first novel, The Hard Blue Sky (1958), a ...more
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