Remembering: A Novel (Port William)

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9781582434155: Remembering: A Novel (Port William)
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Published in 1990 by the legendary North Point Press, this is a poetic novel of despair, hope, and the redemptive power of work. After losing his hand in an accident, Andy Catlett confronts an agronomist whose surreal vision can see only industrial farming. This vision is powerfully contrasted with that of modest Amish farmers content to live outside the pressures brought by capitalist postindustrial progress, and by working the land to keep “away the three great evils, boredom, vice, and need.”

As Andy's perspective filters through his anger over his loss and the harsh city of San Francisco surrounding him, he begins to remember: the people and places that wait 2,000 miles away in his Kentucky home, the comfort he knew as a farmer, and his symbiotic relationship to the soil. Andy laments the modern shift away from the love of the land, even as he begins to accept his own changed relationship to the world. Wendell Berry's continued fascination with the power of memory continues in this treasured novel set in 1976.

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About the Author:

A native Kentuckian, Wendell Berry lived and taught in New York and California before returning permanently to the Kentucky River region, where he farms on 125 acres in Henry County.

From AudioFile:

Andy Catlett's right hand has been cut off by a corn-picking machine. "Detached" might be a better description since the accident sends Andy into a state of general detachment and malaise. He travels to San Francisco to speak at a meeting of agricultural experts and as he roams the city streets at night, his missing hand becomes a portal into all things missing--love, descendants, and even the family farms that are being replaced by agribusiness. (The book is set in 1976.) There's a spirituality hovering over the proceedings and, like Andy's missing hand, it permeates everything without making itself seen. The audiobook's power has a lot to do with Michael Kramer's narration. Kramer reads as if he were painting, applying sentences like minimalist brush strokes. The result is a meditative, hypnotizing audiobook. R.W.S. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award AudioFile 2010, Portland, Maine

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