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From a great American storyteller, a one-of-a-kind father and his precocious son are rocked by a time of change. The pair make an odd kind of family, with the bar their true home, but they manage just fine until the summer of 1960 when two new women enter their lives.
The central volume in Ivan Doig's acclaimed Montana trilogy, Dancing at the Rascal Fair is an authentic saga of the American experience at the turn of this century and a passionate, portrayal of the immigrants who dared to try new lives in the imposing Rocky Mountains. Ivan Doig's supple tale of landseekers unfolds into a fateful contest of the heart between Anna Ramsay and Angus McCaskill, walled apart by their obligations as they and their stormy kith and kin vie to tame the brutal, beautiful Two Medicine country.
Driven by the memory of a fallen teammate, TSU's 1941 starting lineup went down as legend in Montana football history, charging through the season undefeated. Two years later, the "Supreme Team" is caught up in World War II. Ten of them are scattered around the globe in the war's lonely and dangerous theaters. The eleventh man, Ben Reinking, has been plucked from pilot training by a military propaganda machine hungry for heroes. He is to chronicle the adventures of his teammates, man by man, for publication in small-town newspapers across the country like the one his father edits. Ready for action, he chafes at the assignment, not knowing that it will bring him love from an unexpected quarter and test the law of averages, which holds that all but one of his teammates should come through the conflict unscathed. A brilliantly told tale of the effects of war on small town life by the bestselling author of The Whistling Season.
In the summer of 1939, 14-year-old Jick experiences a family conflict, camptending (sheepherders' camps), a rodeo and a forest fire. To quote Wallace Stegner,"this...evokes Montana--the country...life...people...occupations" The characters are interesting and the book is well-written with a sense of humor. The book contains swearing and Montanan dialect.
Ivan Doig grew up with only a vague memory of his mother, Berneta, who died on his sixth birthday. Then he discovered a cache of her letters--and through them, a spunky, passionate, can-do woman as at home in the saddle as behind a sewing machine, and as in love with language as Doig would prove to be. In this moving prequel to his acclaimed memoir This House of Sky, Doig brings to life his childhood before his mother's death and the family's journey from the Montana mountains to the Arizona desert and back again. He eloquently captures the texture of the American West during and after World War II, the fortune of a family, and one woman's indomitable spirit.
At fifty-something, environmental reporter Mitch Rozier has grown estranged from Seattle's coffee shop and cyber culture. His newspaper is going under, and his relationship with Lexa McCaskill is stalled at "just living together. " Then, he is summoned by his sly, exasperating father, Lyle, back to the family land, which Lyle plans to sell in the latest of his get-rich schemes before dying. Lexa follows, accompanied by her sister Mariah, and the stage is set for long-overdue confrontations -- between lovers, sisters, and father and son. Mountain Time is distinguished by humor and a wry insight into the power of family feuds to mark individuals and endure. Set against the glorious backdrop of Montana mountain country, it is a dazzling novel of love, family, and the contemporary West.
Prairie Nocturne is the epic saga of two former lovers sired in the pages of Ivan Doig's acclaimed Montana Trilogy. Susan Duff -- the bossy, indomitable schoolgirl with a silver voice from Dancing at the Rascal Fair-- has reached middle age alone, teaching voice lessons to the progeny of Helena's high society. Wesley Williamson, young married heir to the Double W cattle empire, has been forced out of a political career as a result of his affair with Susan having become known. Years later, Wes and Susan have reunited to share in an extraordinary goal: launching the singing career of Monty Rathbun--a man on the wrong side of the racial divide. In this triumph of sure-footed storytelling, motives and fates dangerously entangle. Set in Montana, France, Scotland, and New York during the Harlem Renaissance, Prairie Nocturne is a deeply longitudinal novel that raises everlasting questions of allegiance, the grip of the past, and the cost of passion.
This great-hearted novel is the finale of Ivan Doig's passionate and authentic trilogy about the McCaskill family and their alluring Two Medicine country along the hem of the northern Rockies. Jick McCaskill, the illustrious narrator of English Creek, returns as the witty and moving voice in this classic encounter with the American road and all the rewards and travails it can bring. Jick faces his family's -- and his state's -- legacy of loss and perseverance from the vantage point of Montana's centennial in 1989 when his daughter Mariah enlists him as Winnebago chauffeur to her and her ex-husband, the magnificently ornery and eloquent columnist Riley Wright, when their news-paper dispatches them to dig up stories of the "real Montana. " Just as the centennial is a cause for reflection as well as jubilation, the exuberant travels of this trio bring on encounters with the past in "memory storms" that become occasions for reassessment and necessary accommodations of the heart.
In this timeless survival story, four indentured servants escape their Russian Alaska work camp in a stolen canoe, only to face a harrowing journey down the Pacific Northwest coast. Battling unrelenting high seas and fierce weather from New Archangel, Alaska, to Astoria, Oregon, the men struggle to avoid hostile Tlingit Indians, to fend off starvation and exhaustion, and to endure their own doubt and distrust. Based on an actual incident in 1853, The Sea Runners is a spare and awe-inspiring tale of the human quest for freedom.
This work introduced a major modern author to the reading public. Doig's life was formed among the sheepherders and other denizens of small-town saloons and valley ranches as he wandered beside his restless father. New Preface by the Author.
"Can't cook but doesn't bite." So begins the newspaper ad offering the services of an "A-1 housekeeper, sound morals, exceptional disposition" that draws the hungry attention of widower Oliver Milliron in the fall of 1909. And so begins the unforgettable season that deposits the noncooking, nonbiting, ever-whistling Rose Llewellyn and her font-of-knowledge brother, Morris Morgan, in Marias Coulee along with a stampede of homesteaders drawn by the promise of the Big Ditch--a gargantuan irrigation project intended to make the Montana prairie bloom. When the schoolmarm runs off with an itinerant preacher, Morris is pressed into service, setting the stage for the "several kinds of education"-- none of them of the textbook variety-Morris and Rose will bring to Oliver, his three sons, and the rambunctious students in the region's one-room schoolhouse. A paean to a vanished way of life and the eccentric individuals and idiosyncratic institutions that made it fertile, The Whistling Season is Ivan Doig at his evocative best.
An award-winning and beloved novelist of the American West spins the further adventures of a favorite character, in one of his richest historical settings yet.
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