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The Orchard Keeper by Cormac McCarthy was selected by Tom "Big Daddy" Mathews as the Moderator's Choice for Members of On the Southern Literary Trail for January, 2016.
First Edition, Random House, New York, New York, 1965
Cormac McCarthy, Dust Jacket Photo, "The Orchard Keeper"
Them that's got shall get...more
Them that's not shall lose
So the Bible said and it still is news
Mama may have Papa may have
But God bless the child that'
Face it GoodReaders—Cormac McCarthy isn’t for everyone. I doubt it was ever his intention. He doesn’t write for the casual reader, or even the avid reader. I think he writes primarily for himself, and gets rather a kick out of those of us who follow his every word and enjoy it for what it is. Like any artist, he creates a work, makes it available to a public, and moves on. He’s seemingly uninterested in what people think of his work, or in discussing his work, or its popularity. Reception to his...more
But,oh my God, this was a good book!
The lyrical language and description of nature pulled me in. The dialogue of the isolated, uneducated, Tennessee mountain people kept me there. The rough characters who found a way to survive by any means kept me rooting for them, eve ...more
There are a lot of reviews that mention the difference between this and McCarthy’s later work. It’s undeniably true that this is a tonal anomaly; the cadence is yet to be developed, the trademark dialogue is almost entirely absent along with the heavy religiosity. Hell, even the flora gets short shrift. All things considered, however, The Orchard Keeper is a fine first novel that demonstrates pure ambition, a deftness of language in the upper one-percentile, and…I just don’t ...more
this was his most difficult yet, perhaps because much of the time I didn’t really feel like I knew what was going on and didn’t entirely trust that the obfuscation was with valid purpose. More than any other McCarthy novel, I had to work very hard to follow...more
While The Orchard Keeper isn’t quite at the level of Blood Meridian or Suttree, I’m still convinced that Cormac McCarthy sprang from the womb clutching a po ...more
McCarthy is more about quality over quantity, yet the reader yearns for more. With it being his first novel, it displays much talent and what would eventually become an amazing literary career.
Probably a great starting point for anyone venturing out into one of his back-wood ...more
On the list of best books I’ve ever read, Blood Meridian would be near the top (if you put the proverbial gun to my head, I’d probably put it at the top). However, I’d only read two of McCarthy’s novels before this year: Blood Meridian and The Road. One of my personal goals for 2016 is to take a deep dive into McCarthy’s back catalog. I started at the beginning with The Orchard Keeper, McCarthy’s first published novel.
The story centers around three characters living in the 1930’s: a young boy, a ...more
Club Read: On the Southern Literary Trail
By the time he left the road and entered the woods they were coming down, the dead and leafless trunks, grasping with brittle gray fingers and going prone on the earth with muffled thunder of their fall half lost in the fulminations overhead. The old man kept to his course, over last year's leaves slick with water, hopping and dancing wildly among the maelstrom of riotous greenery like some rain sprite, burned out of near-darkness in antic configuration a ...more
(I read a very early copy of the book, with the original blurbs on the jacket. Random House was very sure of the book's popularity and importance, enough so to suggest McCarthy was a writer who would inevitably be recognized as a master at some point. They clearly had no idea it would take about 30 years for him to start ...more
Sure, it was a little confusing with the shifting narration, denoted with italics, that sometimes takes place in the middle of a conversation. I sometimes wasn't quite sure whom nor when thes ...more
È un libro aspro, percorso da una violenza strisciante, insidiosa e inarrestabile, una storia di equivoci e di segreti, di maturazione e di lealtà, di solitudine e di disincanto.
I protagonisti non sono eroi, ma individui che lottano per l’esistenza, un’esistenza che non regala nulla, ma piuttosto toglie, crudelmente ...more
I liked everything about this book. The italicized sections seemed to be coming from each of the three main characters adding a slightly skewed perspective to the action at hand. I appreciated how the story was a collection of antidotes rather than a plot driven sledge hammer.
Frank has a terrific set of thoughts. https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...
I am a pretty astute reader, I think, but I couldn’t keep track of the characters and couldn’t find anyone or thing that I liked enough to keep going. Too bad.
The novel centers around three independent characters all living in the same rural Tennessee hill community. It's filled with elegaic descriptions of nature, concrete actions of the characters and a delibe ...more
His earlier Blood M ...more