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MOUNTAIN TIME. A Novel

Doig, Ivan

610 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 068483295X / ISBN 13: 9780684832951
Published by Scribner's, New York, 1999
Hardcover
From Ed Smith Books, ABAA (Bainbridge Island, WA, U.S.A.)

AbeBooks Seller Since November 15, 1997

Quantity Available: 1

About this Item

Signed by the author on the title page. Laid into this copy is an author photo, press release and a brochure for a literary which included Doig in 2006. A novel of a generation shaped by the sixties, that has reached its time of reckoning, and of a man who must uncover the secrets of his father's past before he can live and love in the present. From the estate of Beef Torrey, writer, raconteur and friend of many many writers. A fine copy in a fine dust jacket. Bookseller Inventory # 12813

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Bibliographic Details

Title: MOUNTAIN TIME. A Novel

Publisher: Scribner's, New York

Publication Date: 1999

Binding: Hardcover

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: First Edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

In his latest novel, Ivan Doig writes of a generation, shaped by the sixties, that has reached its time of reckoning, and of a man who must uncover the secrets of his father's past before he can live and love in the present.

One of the greatest writers of the American West, Doig exquisitely renders the natural beauty of its landscapes as he contrasts human time with the immense clock of the earth, measuring the briefer existences that are our human fate against the patient witness of the mountains. Set in Seattle, San Francisco, Montana, and Alaska, Mountain Time is the story of three intense relationships: between father and son, between sisters, and between lovers. At once complex and subtle, these oldest quandaries of kinship and love are all dramatically in need of resolution.

Mitch Rozier, who has spent half his fifty years writing an environmental column for an alternative west coast paper, finds himself back under his father's roof, caught up in the ordeal of obligation -- you can't not go home again when someone is sitting there dying. The sisters Lexa and Mariah McCaskill wrestle with a past that has driven them away from domesticity and as far from their roots as they can get. Lexa has long been ready to settle down with Mitch; Mariah, a photographer who uses her camera to shield herself from the world, lands more reluctantly. And the figure from the generation that produced them, Mitch's father Lyle, both beguiles and exasperates as he attempts to rewrite events in his life before he leaves it.

Doig is masterful at illuminating both human and geographical vulnerability, constantly shifting our focus between the land -- breathtaking, essential and in need of protection -- and the people bonded to it.

Review:

Celebrated for his stirring, clear-eyed memoirs and novels of Montana--Dancing at the Rascal Fair, This House of Sky, and most recently Bucking the Sun--Ivan Doig vaults over the mountains in his new novel and lands in the midst of Seattle's fin-de-siècle coffee and computer culture. Mitch Rozier is an oversized, Montana-born, divorced, fiftysomething environmental columnist for a once-hip weekly newspaper on the verge of going under. Lexa McCaskill is his scrappy, earthy, no-nonsense "spousal equivalent"--a "compact Stetsoned woman in blue jeans," also from Montana and divorced, who makes a handsome living catering swanky parties for Seattle's software plutocrats. Doig has a fine time satirizing the excesses and absurdities of "Cyberia" before he abruptly shoos his characters back to Montana: Lyle Rozier, Mitch's Stegner-esque father, wants to involve his son in one more ransack-the-land scheme before leukemia kills him.

The wary standoff between father and son works on many levels: as a deeply realistic clash between two fierce, disappointed men; as a symbolic confrontation between the Old West and the new--Lyle's frank, freewheeling exploitation of Montana's vastness versus Mitch's helpless reverence for the environment; and as a brief, brilliant history of how people have lived off and with the land in 20th-century Montana. All of these strands come together in a stunning climax played out against the glorious backdrop of the Bob Marshall Wilderness.

One of the great novelists of the American West, Doig proves here that he is just as adept at conjuring up the vagaries of our shiny new cities as he is at taking the measure of rough, tough, old Montana. Mountain Time has everything going for it--great characters, breathtaking scenery, heartbreaking family feuds, wicked humor, a page-turning love story, prose so perfectly pitched you'll want to read it out loud. And there's something new for Doig aside from setting--a serene, twinkling levity. This is the work of a master having a hell of a good time. --David Laskin

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