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Simon the Fiddler

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  32 ratings  ·  15 reviews
The critically acclaimed, bestselling author of News of the World and Enemy Women returns to Texas in this atmospheric story, set at the end of the Civil War, about an itinerant fiddle player, a ragtag band of musicians with whom he travels trying to make a living, and the charming young Irish lass who steals his heart.

In March 1865, the long and bitter War between the
Hardcover, 352 pages
Expected publication: April 14th 2020 by William Morrow
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  • Simon the Fiddler by Paulette Jiles
    Simon the Fiddler
    Release date: Apr 14, 2020
    The critically acclaimed, bestselling author of News of the World and Enemy Women returns to Texas in this atmospheric story, set at the end of the ...more

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    Availability: 100 copies available, 2249 people requesting

    Giveaway dates: Jan 13 - Jan 25, 2020

    Countries available: U.S.

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    Oct 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Review to follow, all I can say now is that I loved it ....
    A big thank-you to Paulette Jiles, William Morrow & Edelweiss !
    Will Byrnes
    It was different then. The air was different and the long remote crying of the steamboat whistles as they came down from the Monongahela and Pittsburgh seemed to tell the story of a great nation and a great people with adventure and the look of distance in their eyes, and now it was somehow soiled with the stench of the dead. MacFarland was dead. Lincoln was dead. Neighbors had shot one another dead. It occurred to him that he rarely laughed anymore. Maybe laughter would come back, but it was a
    Stephanie Crowe
    Nov 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    The west comes alive under the pen of Paulette Jiles. She takes the reader back in time to experience first hand life in Texas after the Civil War. Simon is a flawed character whose anger when uncontrolled gets him into trouble, but he has a creative musical side that adds character to his personality.His attraction and affection for an indentured Irish girl, Doris Mary Dillon certainly brings romance to life early Texas style when relationships were much more restrained.
    It is easy to lose
    Kim McGee
    Jan 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
    I was a huge fan of NEWS OF THE WORLD and was over the moon to be back in the wilds of old Texas again. This is a story of a good man who doesn't want to be violent (unless you touch his fiddle) but the world doesn't always allow him to stay silent or defenseless. Simon does his best to protect his fellow musicians and earn the love of an Irish governess he falls in love with from afar. He is a gentle soul caught in a violent wind of post-civil war Texas. The story is woven with peppery phrases ...more
    Kerry Pickens
    Dec 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: read-2019
    This is historical romance set in Texas, and the two lovebirds barely know each other. One is a young fiddler and his love interest is a Scottish indentured servant. If you liked Cold Mountain or True Grit, you would enjoy this book.
    Laura Hill
    Thank you to William Morrow and NetGalley for providing an advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. The book will be published on April 14th, 2020.

    The best kind of historical fiction — a deep, richly painted, description of life in East Texas at the end of the Civil War. It’s an everyday adventure story — not about mythical heroes but about people trying to reclaim their lives in the chaotic aftermath of a devastating war.

    Simon Boudlin — the titular fiddler — has simple goals
    Oct 23, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    I loved the author’s earlier work NEWS OF THE WORLD and was hoping for a similar masterpiece, but alas, it is not to be. The vivid descriptions are here, placing me right in the Texas countryside of 1865, but the characters are not as strong as the wonderful Captain Kidd. The titular Simon and 3 buddies leave the Confederate Army without properly discharging, and try to carve out a life playing music in and around Texas. Simon has a short fuse and doesn’t like being around people, two traits ...more
    Nov 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Hauntingly beautiful. Jiles is somehow able to bring Simon and his fiddle to life, so that we hear his music and feel his love for a dark haired Irish girl he has seen only once for a few minutes time. The story is set in south Texas at the end of the Civil War and in the unsettled times following. Jile's research, as always, is meticulous in every carefully drawn detail, but the history is never allowed to overpower the story. I loved Enemy Women and News of the Worldbut Simon the Fiddler is ...more
    Oct 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Jiles writes with insistent evocative grace, bringing to life Texas in the immediate aftermath of the Civil War. Simon Boudlin, seen in News of the World, is the hero of this story. He yearns for music, a wife, and land. This novel traces his journey from unwilling Confederate conscriptee toward those goals.
    Sharon Lawler
    Great survival story based with a period playlist in the background. The end of the Civil War has finally arrived, and in Texas a group of Yankee and Confederate musicians find themselves tasked with providing the music for the night's farewell banquet for the officers from both sides. After they are officially dismissed, the fiddler, twenty-three-year-old Simon Boudlin, finds himself in the company of Yankee drummer boy Patrick O'Hehir who plays bones and bodhran, piper Damon Lessing, Irish tin ...more
    Nov 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: 2019
    What a wonderful story about hope, integrity, redemption and the resolve to set your path in life.

    At the end of the civil war, one young man, although having come through the devastation of that war, knows what he wants to do with his life and what he needs to do to reach that end.

    Music plays such an important part of this story. "...they all shared memories of the chaos of the Civil War, of death and destruction, poverty, dislocation. But he had his music. He could lift them out of all that
    Dec 25, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
    A decent read, but not nearly as captivating or enjoyable as News of the World. My biggest beef is the secondary characters are, like, something less than caricature. I felt slighted and frustrated on their behalf. Extra uncomfortable because two of the three are people of color.
    Jo Beth
    A historical fiction yarn about a fiddler in the old west., Simon, who falls in love and pursues his object of desire across the Texas terrority. The book meanders, just like the rivers, but the lack of tension and conflict just makes this a pretty ordinary read.
    Susan Dunker
    Dec 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Not as good a News of The World. Much longer. Beautifully written. Lovely love story.
    Dec 23, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
    Simon the Fiddler follows Simon Boudlin and his musician friends as they make their way through war-torn Texas following the American Civil War. At times beautiful and haunting, the plot of this uneven historical novel has the unfortunate tendency to meander to and fro without direction, very much like the protagonist himself. It's darker and more melancholy than News of the World (Captain Kidd makes a cameo appearance) and lacks the focused plot and memorable characters that made that novel a ...more
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    Paulette Jiles is an American poet and novelist. Born in Salem, Missouri, she was educated at the University of Missouri with a degree in Romance Lanugages. Jiles lives in the Texas Hill Country on a small ranch.