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The Simple Life

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3.38  ·  Rating Details ·  8 Ratings  ·  3 Reviews
What is happening in Vermont now that new people are moving in and the old agrarian ways are dying THE SIMPLE LIFE is a deeply engaging rural trag edy about well-meaning ordinary people whose lives tangle with each other in a destructive way. The only true innocents are the team of oxen whose own story is one of the central threads. In 1991, Isabel Rawlings, a middle-aged ...more
Paperback, 427 pages
Published January 1st 2006 by Bar Nothing Books
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Jay Ginsburg
Apr 26, 2013 Jay Ginsburg rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
The Simple Life seems to leave us thinking that 'simple' is a goal that is very complicated to reach. At least for the main character, who follows her fantasy when her marriage breaks up, hard truths get in the way. If it is easy for anyone, it's the reader, who can follow along, appreciate the complexities her search brings, and reflect on the life we have (we hope) a little more clearly.
Both place and time are familiar to me, and Ruth Porter shows a good understanding of how both work to form
...more
Linda Hawk
May 06, 2014 Linda Hawk rated it really liked it
After winning a copy of "Ordinary Magic" through Goodreads, I had the opportunity to correspond with Ms. Porter regarding how much I enjoyed her book. She kindly sent me a copy of "The Simple Life" to read as well.

Ms. Porter did an excellent job of showing how hard it is for people who don't know the farm lifestyle to understand what it really is. It may look like the "Simple" life, but there are so many hard edges to deal with on a daily basis.

Porter's Isabel is such a likable, yet naive charac
...more
Michael
Jan 15, 2016 Michael rated it liked it
A middle-aged woman, newly divorced and having severed all connections to her past life, moves to a rural town in Vermont in order to live "the simple life," based on her naive and romanticized perceptions of such an existence. She quickly finds that while some aspects are as wholesome as she had guessed, life in Severance is nothing like simple, and her naiveté eventually leads to personal tragedy that changes not only the lives of several characters, but also the very face of the land that she ...more
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I was born in New York City in 1940, and I grew up in Alliance, Ohio, but it wasn’t until I had graduated from St. John’s College and married Bill Porter that I moved to Vermont. That was when I felt as though I had really come home. Books were important in my family. My mother was one of the daughters of Max Perkins, the editor of Hemingway and Fitzgerald. I always read a lot, but I never though ...more
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