Close Range : Wyoming Stories

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9780684852225: Close Range : Wyoming Stories

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning and bestselling author of The Shipping News and Accordion Crimes comes one of the most celebrated short story collections of our time.

Annie Proulx's masterful language and fierce love of Wyoming are evident in these breathtaking tales of loneliness, quick violence, and the wrong kinds of love. Each of the stunning portraits in Close Range reveals characters fiercely wrought with precision and grace.

These are stories of desperation and unlikely elation, set in a landscape both stark and magnificent -- by an author writing at the peak of her craft.

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Review:

Pulitzer Prize-winner E. Annie Proulx forays through the underside of America's beloved Wild West in Close Range, a collection of stories about hardship and more hardship in Wyoming territory. Understanding that the West's infinite spaces tended to inspire neither introspection nor contemplation, but a violent and insatiable restlessness, Proulx's eight stories are dark reflections on the lives of a handful of characters striving to define themselves against the unforgiving landscapes. The three professional actors chosen to read the text give strong, resounding interpretations of the macabre tales. (Running time: 6 hours, 4 cassettes) --Natasha Senjanovich

From the Inside Flap:

Annie Proulx's masterful language and fierce love of Wyoming are evident in this collection of stories about loneliness, quick violence, and wrong kinds of love. In "The Mud Below", a rodeo rider's obsession marks the deepening fissures between his family life and self-imposed isolation. In "The Half-Skinned Steer", an elderly fool drives west to the ranch he grew up on for his brother's funeral, and dies a mile from home. . . .

These are stories of desperation, hard times, and unlikely elation, set in a landscape both brutal and magnificent. Enlivened by folk tales, flights of fancy, and details of ranch and rural work, they juxtapose Wyoming's traditional character and attitudes -- confrontation of tough problems, prejudice, persistence in the face of difficulty -- with the more benign values of the new west.

In a unique collaboration that revives the tradition of the Scribner illustrated classics, Proulx has worked with the artist William Matthews, whose six watercolors create an eloquent visual dialogue.

Stories in Close Range have appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, Harper's, and GQ. They have been selected for the O. Henry Stories 1998 and The Best American Short Stories of the Century and have won the National Magazine Award for Fiction. This is work by an author writing at the peak of her craft.

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