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Blue Calhoun

3.77  ·  Rating Details ·  220 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
"This starts with the happiest I ever was, though it brought down suffering on everybody near me. Short as it lasted and long ago, I've never laid it all out yet, not start to finish. But if I try and half succeed, you may wind up understanding things, choosing a better road for yourself and maybe not blaming the dead past but living for the here and now, each day a clean ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published April 4th 2000 by Scribner (first published 1992)
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James
Dec 15, 2010 James rated it really liked it
Blue Calhoun is a fine read and kept me coming back to the book night after night. Blue is a character with lots of passion, but he's also driven in ways that tend to harm those closest to him. Blue's biggest strength and related flaw is that he loves too many women. When he falls hard for a young woman, Luna Absher, he's hellbent on following his instincts without paying much attention to prior vows and commitments. The ripple effects of his on and off relationship with Luna have immediate and ...more
Chad M.
Jan 14, 2015 Chad M. rated it it was amazing
Beautiful book. Reynolds Price is a master at writing a portrait. The entirety of a human being seems truly contained inside this novel.
The pace and romance dips in the latter half of the book, but if you took a highlighter to this book to note every beautiful sentence, the book would be neon by the time you were done.
Pat
Nov 04, 2013 Pat rated it really liked it
Reynolds Price writes of incest and pedophilia in such a courtly style that I had to re-read certain passages to verify the recitation of unspeakable acts committed on children by people whom they trusted. The "hero" is not a likeable person and it is difficult to comprehend how his mother, wife and daughter continue to give him so many "second" chances. His weaknesses are apparent, as is his awareness of the hurt that he inflicts; however, he doesn't redeem himself by being aware since he conti ...more
Phil
Aug 29, 2014 Phil rated it it was amazing
Almost the perfect southern novel. This reminded me a lot of Faulkner believe it or not. The undertones of child abuse and the permanent harm it brings to all concerned overlays a story that reveals an astounding frailty in all involved. This novel is not for the feint of heart since it involves some sensitive topics. But these topics are an eye opener to southern attitudes in a setting of ignorance and moral depravity. It's like being in a confessional listening to a sinner confess a series of ...more
Kristi Brendle
As all of Price's books go, he pontificates ad nauseum. The story was gripping at first, although as a reader you're screaming "RUN AWAY!" at the main character's behaviour. Personally, I couldn't ingest any more "Poor me, poor her, this is wrong but Ima gonna do it anyway" prose. Seriously, more than half the book was filled with internal struggle. Price is amazing, but it's almost as if he needs the reader to give validation to his characters' struggles. After 100 pages of such, I had to tell ...more
Liz Strillacci
Aug 03, 2013 Liz Strillacci rated it it was amazing
How do you describe a book about sex and passion gone awry in characters you cannot help but love? Reynolds Price once again creates characters that are human, fallible, wrong-headed and irresistible. Pouring onto the pages like liquid gold, Mr. Price spins a tale of infidelity, small redemptions and lingering questions in the midst of a family based on love and strongly grounded. I wish I'd known them.
Katy
Feb 18, 2012 Katy rated it liked it
Meh. I've loved every other book that I've read by Reynolds Price (six, I think). And this one does have a few soaring passages. But the narrator of this one is a nearly 40 year old man who falls in love with a 16 year old girl. Hard to feel much sympathy or empathy for him. And despite that flaw/mistake, he keeps taking the blame for everything else bad that happens to his loved ones, and some of it simply isn't his fault. But this book won't stop me from reading Mr. Price again.
Kayla Henry
Sep 25, 2011 Kayla Henry rated it it was amazing
I read Blue Calhoun by Reynolds Price quite a few years ago, and it has always stuck out in my mind as one of my favorite books. It's a great piece of Southern Literature that I would definitely recommend.
Dianne
Feb 01, 2008 Dianne rated it really liked it
This is my favorite Reynolds Price novel. It tells a lot about the town of Raleigh, I am familiar with the streets and neighborhoods. What I think I took from this was how much the characters loved one another. There is a lot to be said for unconditional love.
Brenda
Jul 09, 2008 Brenda rated it liked it
I'm not sure how I feel about this book, but I liked it. Sort of, kind of, almost really liked it....

What I'd really like is to discuss it with someone to see why I'm so intrigued with discussing a book that I'm not sure I really liked.
Stephanie Williams
Aug 09, 2007 Stephanie Williams rated it liked it
An uncomfortable main character, but a setting and story you won't forget. Lolita anyone?
Namaste
Nov 27, 2012 Namaste rated it did not like it
Hated it. Main character is a perv.
Beverlee
Jan 23, 2010 Beverlee rated it did not like it
Couldn't finish this book -didn't like the way the story was told - didn't like the story.
Elizabeth A.
thick and sugary
Chris
Jan 21, 2011 Chris rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Read it back in the mid-90s and don't remember much about it. I was reminded of it in reading Reynolds Price's obit.
Trina
Jul 24, 2011 Trina rated it liked it
continuing my love of Reynolds Price... this novel did not disappoint. the story is a little disturbing.
my yellow lab is now named after the central female character.
Bernie
Jun 06, 2011 Bernie rated it did not like it
I read the book. I didn't remember reading it; so, obviously, I don't think that highly of it.
KG
Jan 15, 2017 KG rated it really liked it
Great writing as usual but a deeply disturbing book.
Cathy
Cathy rated it really liked it
Jun 04, 2014
Jeffrey Keenan
Jeffrey Keenan rated it really liked it
Oct 02, 2015
Liz E.
Liz E. rated it really liked it
Nov 23, 2013
Robin Broumas
Robin Broumas rated it really liked it
Sep 28, 2012
Jean
Jean rated it it was ok
Feb 17, 2012
K.
K. rated it really liked it
Apr 14, 2011
Lexy
Lexy rated it really liked it
Jun 22, 2012
Susette Redman
Susette Redman rated it really liked it
May 04, 2013
Patrick
Patrick rated it liked it
Feb 24, 2016
Jennifer
Jennifer rated it it was amazing
Jun 16, 2010
Lisa
Lisa rated it it was ok
Jan 23, 2012
Greg McConeghy
Greg McConeghy rated it really liked it
May 06, 2017
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Reynolds Price was born in Macon, North Carolina in 1933. Educated at Duke University and, as a Rhodes Scholar, at Merton College, Oxford University. He taught at Duke since 1958 and was James B. Duke Professor of English.

His first short stories, and many later ones, are published in his Collected Stories. A Long and Happy Life was published in 1962 and won the William Faulkner Award for a best fi
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