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Brokeback Mountain

(Wyoming Stories)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  35,710 ratings  ·  3,090 reviews
Annie Proulx has written some of the most original and brilliant short stories in contemporary literature, and for many readers and reviewers, "Brokeback Mountain" is her masterpiece.

Ennis del Mar and Jack Twist, two ranch hands, come together when they're working as sheepherder and camp tender one summer on a range above the tree line. At first, sharing an isolated tent

Paperback, 55 pages
Published December 2nd 2005 by Scribner (first published October 13th 1997)
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Average rating 3.96  · 
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 ·  35,710 ratings  ·  3,090 reviews

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Julie G
I rarely go to the movies. Truly, the last movie I saw in a theater was Lincoln, in 2012.

But, one day back in 2005, a good friend called and wondered if I'd like to spend that snowy Sunday in a theater with her, watching something called Brokeback Mountain.

Brokeback Mountain? Never heard of it. Sure, I'd go.

Almost no one was in the theater that morning. My friend got popcorn, and I got comfortable. When Heath Ledger appeared on the giant screen, I got sassy, and my friend got uncomfortable.

Apr 01, 2010 rated it really liked it
Normally, I would never read something like this. No, I am not homophobic (my older brother is gay); but I do get uncomfortable when reading about two men kissing. So, needless to say, I wasn't expecting much from this very short novella.

Let me be the first to say how utterly wrong I was. This novella is not merely about two men who fall in love; it is about love itself. The love story these men share is intense, stormy, beautiful, and heart-wrenching, and I found myself thankful that I have on
Nov 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novella, fiction, western
Annie Proulx is one of the foremost American writers today. Her novel The Shipping News won the Pulitzer Prize, and her latest novel Barkskins seems to have been written in the same vain. As I am drawn to Pulitzer winners in my ongoing personal challenge to read them, I decided to sample Proulx's writing before undergoing the reading of one of her full length novels. Brokeback Mountain set high in the Rockies and later made into a movie of the same name was originally published in the New Yorker ...more
Dec 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I picked this up at the library last night because it was a tiny book, perfect for today's lunch time read.

I'm ashamed to say that I attempted to watch the film, but fell asleep about 45 minutes in. Now that I've read this story, I'm going to revisit the film.

This is the first time I've read Annie Proulx. It is amazing how much story she covers in so few pages. Her spare prose, concise style and quiet intensity really worked for me.

An absolutely beautiful, heartbreaking love story! Makes me wan
Late in the afternoon, thunder growling, that same old green pickup rolled in and he saw Jack get out of the truck, beat up Resistol tilted back. A hot jolt scalded Ennis and he was out on the landing pulling the door closed behind him. Jack took the stairs two and two. They seized each other by the shoulders, hugged mightily, squeezing the breath out of each other, saying, son of a bitch, son of a bitch, then, and easily as the right key turns the lock tumblers, their mouths came together, a ...more
JV (semi-hiatus)
"Below it he drove a nail and on the nail he hung the wire hanger and the two old shirts suspended from it. He stepped back and looked at the ensemble through a few stinging tears."

Bumping up my rating to 5 unforgettable stars!

This novella will always have a place in my heart. I miss these guys so much. Perhaps, in an alternate reality, Jack and Ennis will have their HEA.
"Later, that dozy embrace solidified in his memory as the single moment of artless, charmed happiness in their s
Mar 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audible
Late to the party but I when I did get there I sure as heck enjoyed myself

This book was given to me by a friend who said I cant believe you have never read this or at least seen the movie. Well I hadn't and at 60 pages this short novela has a lot to say and really does pack quite a punch.

Originally published in The New Yorker in 1997 for which it won the National Magazine Award for fiction 1998.

In 1963 two young men Ennis del Mar and Jack Twish are hired for the summer to look after sheep at a
Susan's Reviews
Jan 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I have to admit that when I first read this story, I had difficulty understanding a few scenes or passages, since it was written in the vernacular of the back country. But regret and fear of discovery are languages we can all understand.

We live in a global community where tolerance and acceptance are not always uniform. Many people who make lifestyle choices that may not be acceptable to their respective communities still suffer both physical and mental retaliation and ostracism. Although we ha
That's fine. I didn't need my heart anyway.

This book is like a punch in the gut. I never thought that a short story could have such an impact on me. This isn’t simply a book about two cowboys falling in love: this is the heartbreaking tale of Jack and Ennis who love each other, but deny it not only because they’re afraid of the outside world, but also of their own feelings.
America in the 1960’s wasn’t a safe place for homosexuals after all, and if society can’t accept them, how can they accept
Rosalinda *KRASNORADA*
Mar 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: next-up

Review to come.

This is the first time I like the movie more than the book...

Kon R.
Jun 23, 2022 rated it it was amazing
These guys went from 0 to 100 real quick. I guess that's because this was a short story and not a full length novel. In this rare case the movie is somehow longer (1 hour audiobook vs 2 hour movie). I did see it years ago and it was definitely a bit more subtle in regards to the first interaction between the main characters.

This story is more about not being able to live the life you want than a gay relationship. It's about society's norms and families' expectations. It's about putting your nee
Feb 18, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I saw Brokeback Mountain when I was quite young (my mom changed channels when a sex scene came on like she always did) and I have to say, it sorta blew my mind. Gay was not a word I heard, unless someone in my class was teasing someone or something. I grew up in the Irish countryside so I was quite sheltered until I was at least 15/16 (hmm, same year we got Wi-Fi). But as a 12 year old, to be "gay" meant something bad and dirty and I never understood why. Nobody could give me an acceptable answe ...more
Axl Oswaldo
If I had to describe this story in three words, they would be: beautiful, heartbreaking, and unique.

Let’s put this into context: I received not so good news yesterday at night – I really felt in a bad way, a little bit optimistic though. Before too long, I decided to pick up this book, since I have always believed that a book can help us to face any difficult situation when there’s no one around us at that precise moment. So, I read this one at 2 AM today, while I was listening to Can you feel t

“Gay cowboy love story” may be how it’s often summed up, but that’s flippant. Brokeback Mountain is emotional, resonant, and ultimately gut-wrenching--and quietly so. This is a humble story, tightly focused almost exclusively on young Wyoming cowboys Ennis and Jack as they spend a summer working together on Brokeback Mountain. Before long they’re forced to reconcile their love for each other with their everyday, conventional, socially acceptable lives.

What’s most powerful about
5 Stars

Brokeback Mountain is a beautifully heartbreaking short story about two lonely cowboys falling in love.

Author Annie Proulx is one of the few impressively skilled and deftly capable writers who are able to convey an entire lifetime of joy and sorrow in so few pages. Her prose is lyrical, poignant, and so very precise, with each scarce word used to full effect. Her words moved me, plain and simple.

Regardless of how many times I’ve seen the film adaptation, reading about Ennis and Jack’s tr
I read this in the collection Close Range: Brokeback Mountain and Other stories, which I reviewed HERE.

I knew this exquisite story well from the film, and the two are very similar.

It is a story of unexpected and irresistible passion, longing and loss - understated and never graphic.

Jack and Ennis meet, lust and love one summer, and meet up over the years, despite starting more conventional families. "The brilliant charge of their infrequent couplings was darkened by the sense of time flying, n
"I wish I knew how to quit you."

The movie Brokeback Mountain is one of my favorite movies of all time I literally own three different versions of the DVD and I've been wanting to get my hands on the book for years now. My local library finally had the audiobook available and I listened to it immediately. It took me less than an hour to listen to the whole thing, and damn this story is just incredible. I think I loved reading the book even more after seeing the movie because I already know and l
* A Reader Obsessed *
4 Stars

If you can't fix it you’ve got to stand it...

Heartbreaking and no less powerful for its 50 sparse pages.
Sometimes you read a short story that falls a bit short of expectations. Because it would have been a better, or more complete story if it had been longer. This is not how this short story made me feel. In fact, more than sixty pages of this might have been too much. I only wished I had read it before I watched the amazing movie adaptation.

This story, as Julie so cleverly phrased it, is about being in love with someone you can’t have, and few feelings are as violent as that. And I’m willing to b
Nat K

"I goddamn hate it that you're goin a drive away in the mornin and I'm goin back to work. But if you can't fix it you gotta stand it...."

The story of Jack & Ennis who met and loved on Brokeback Mountain is unutterably raw. Though a quick read coming in at around 55 pages, it certainly packs a punch.

It's a sparse tale. Minimalist. Kind of like their time together. Over in a rush, never enough. Sometimes only seeing each other every few years, each having their own family. But always on each other
JaHy☝Hold the Fairy Dust
This novel is surprisingly short . . . which makes it difficult to rate the book unbiasedly :-/ I found myself replaying the (exceptional) movie in my mind the entire time.

. . .

. . .

. . . . Now please excuse my while I imagine this scene over and over again ..


Nov 30, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2021-reads
i don't understand why authors back then had a hard time writing love stories that ends happily. who hurt you?!?!?!?

I wish I knew how to quit you.

This is the worst kind of love story, I hate the fact that people were actually kept in the closet because of bigoted assholes. Our generation is still fucked up but boy am I glad it's not as close minded as it used to.

I decided I wanted to make my depressed ass cry even more so I picked this up, then watched the movie for the first time a
Dec 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jane by: Jessica
I don't know how I never knew this was just a very short story. I wish I'd read this years ago. The movie was good, but this was even better. It always amazes me how even a very short story can pull so strongly at your emotions. Thanks so much for the suggestion, Jessica :) ...more
Sidharth Vardhan
More of a novella than a short story. Can be read here:

Moony Eliver
Masterful storytelling that I never want to read again.

The phonetic dialogue tripped me up at the beginning, but I adjusted. Might have been better if it could have insulated me emotionally. I was sure that a 10K-word short couldn't possibly gut me as badly as the movie did.

I was wrong.
Trish (concerningnovels)
This story is every bit as compelling, heart wrenching and beautiful as everyone claims. A true masterpiece of short fiction.

Update 8/10/16

My mind is still reeling with thoughts of Ennis and Jack; the story was simply intimate and heart breaking. It's amazing how much power and weight words can carry with them. Works like Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton and "Brokeback Mountain" by Annie Proulx have taught me that it's about quality, not quantity. Frankly, any author that can move me to tears in le
I'm fucking terrified that yesterday will mean a lackadaisicaling of today, wherein a legal, incorporated, minute change of one of many laws interwoven in the Hetereosexual Agenda banishes the rest to the "what more could you need?" closet and the society spectacle incineration. This work has been termed apolitical by some, but seriously, how can you call a history of human sacrifice apolitical? Not even dwelling on the money, status, and human network so often illegally amputated and afterwards ...more
Petra bf in 2 days but I have lost my nerve
This is the first audio book I've 'read'. It was much more akin to listening to a radio play than sitting reading a book. There was no effort involved and by the nuancing of the narrator the book was interpreted for me. It was fast-paced, no time to sit and ponder a paragraph, no natural break between chapters just a pause. I can't say I enjoyed it, it felt fake, it felt like cheating, it felt like the dumbed-down version - all the work done for me and no need to particularly concentrate either, ...more
Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd)
Maybe a 3.5? This was just far too rushed to get the emotional impact of the story.
Dec 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-story
Raw, intense and heartbreaking.
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Edna Annie Proulx is an American journalist and author. Her second novel, The Shipping News (1993), won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Award for fiction in 1994. Her short story "Brokeback Mountain" was adapted as an Academy Award, BAFTA and Golden Globe Award-winning major motion picture released in 2005. Brokeback Mountain received massive critical acclaim and went on to be ...more

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Wyoming Stories (3 books)
  • Close Range: Wyoming Stories
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  • Fine Just the Way it Is

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