Lescence to old age It gives us a look at western North America US and Canada at the end of the 19th century into the mid 20th There are times when the language is so beautiful that it called to mind Thomas Hardy and I wept through the final chapter The Mason children figure large in this story as well Bo stands in for America in a way He has so much to offer et instead of building in a slow and steady is ever torn by un unuenchable need for the new He is also always on the lookout for the big score and ultimately it never comes Else loves Bo despite his inability to settle down despite his harshness his immaturity Bo s vibrance however flawed stands out Else must sacrifice her desire for a settled life again and again as Bo is drawn ever onward She stands in for the domestic piece of America Their sons diverge as well Chet carries his father s athleticism but also his stubbornness and inability to admit error It ultimately takes him away from his dreams Perhaps the most American is Bruce the mama s boy who ultimately strikes off on his own to make a truly better life The Big Rock Candy Mountain by Wallace Stegner is said to be the closest to an autobiographical account of his own childhood This is the emotionally gripping tale of fictional Bo and Elsa Mason and their two sons Chester and Bruce with striking similarities to the childhood of Stegner The Mason family was continually uprooted as Bo Mason found himself involved in one scheme after another often reuiring the family to move freuently as Bo Mason was often chasing the next big financial scheme as were many others in the movement westward in the first part of the twentieth century Bo Mason oftentimes prone to violence tried his hand at farming running a hotel and ultimately rum running during Prohibition Elsa did everything in her power to make each place a home as this family searched for their piece of The Big Rock Candy Mountain This at times was such a heartbreaking story of this family but there were beautiful moments as well as their struggles sometimes seemed insurmountable in this rich and unforgettable classic There was somewhere if The Ideal Muslim Society you knew where to find it some place where money could be made like drawing water from a well some Big Rock Candy Mountain where life was effortless and rich and unrestricted and full of adventure and action where something could be had for nothingIf one subscribed to the idea of home at all one would insist on an attic for the family history to hide in His mother had felt so all her life She wanted to be part of something an essential atom in a street a town a state she would have loved to get herself expressed in all the pleasant secure details of a deeply lived in houseWas he going home or just another place It wasn t clear Yet he felt good settling his bare arm gingerly on the hot door and opening his mouth to sing He had a notion where home would turn out to be for himself as for his father over the next range on the Big Rock Candy Mountain that place of impossible loveliness that had pulled the whole nation westward 45 Ifou ve read Stegner a man I consider one of America s national treasures Linux Networking Cookbook you will already know his writings are dense The reader cannot be hurried through Patience and thoughtfulness are reuired to appreciate the journey he will takeou on no instant gratification to be found Unless ou love prose for its own sake This one is divided into ten sections and that s how I consumed it for a week and a half Years ago while reading Angle of Repose and Crossing to Safety I recall getting fatigued somewhere between the halfway and three uarters mark responding like a child in the back seat exclaiming Are we almost there That happened with this one also Similar to *DRIVING THROUGH THE GREAT AMERICAN SOUTHWEST ACROSS THE CALIFORNIA *through the great American Southwest across the California and then over the mountains and through all the traffic but then ou see it the gorgeous coastline You see where s he s been taking FRIENDLY ENEMIES you and all those sections come together andou re so glad for the effort spent because ou get it You also know that nothing could be subtracted All the contrast between the red rock and miles of hot dusty roads to the blues and greens of the Pacific It was worth it the journey getting there and the destination You are satiated and satisfied and in love with the stories he weaves and want to sign on for another road trip You also feel completely lacking in the skills necessary to adeuately review or sing the praises of his work This was Stegner s first full length novel I m glad I read it as a mature woman He talks about it in the very beginning of the documentary film to which I have included a link Who better than he to give the reader a sense of what to expect Perhaps I don t cherish it as much as the two mentioned above but it has made me gratefully hunger for and I shall have The closing pages compel me to bump the stars up to fiveOne of my favorite passages author titled this book as well as a later one Where the Bluebird Sings to the Lemonade Springs from lines in a song also used in the movie O Brother Where Art Thou The Big Rock Candy Mountain by Harry Haywire McClintock 1928 This version is visually entertaining as wellhttpswwwyoutubecomwatchvJowmWallace Stegner A Writer s Life A one hour documentary the author participated in shortly before his death Narrated by Robert RedfordhttpswwwyoutubecomwatchvZGCC6Biographyhttpwallacestegnerorgbiohtml Review in shortly before his death Narrated by Robert RedfordhttpswwwyoutubecomwatchvZGCC6Biographyhttpwallacestegnerorgbiohtml Review follow maybe if I ever recover Emotionally I was all over the place I never thought I d cry over Bo Mason still not sure I did but there was a scene towards the end Bo was in that scene when I broke downand for a second felt sad for himI think when ou read a book like this 600 dense pages filled with sorrows paperback small print to boot eventually a reader will break down Yes Or am I crazy Three emotions stand out the most intertwine throughout this novel 1 anger 2 aw 3 sadness I m spent I ll be back to write a better hopefully review later unless I just throw up my hands Many thanks to Lorna she s willing to have a buddy discussion with me I m left with uestions I feel a need to talk about this book discuss with it with other readers I have several uestions and comments about specific parts in this novelWriting a review at the moment just feels too exhausting forgive me I m really spent However I m sooooooo glad I read it and wanting to say hello to my friends here before I scat like a cat A few tidbits about The Big Rock Candy MountainLong Hell And a Bottle of Rum yesDense HellesSlow and poetic at times Hell Crochet yesIncredible prose lots to highlight YES YES and YESTumultuous blistering and turbo accelerating at times YES emotionally Helles at times Worth reading Yes Playhouse yeses One of my all time favorite books close uick uestion to those who have read. Magine pas la vie à lauelle les désirs de grandeur de Bo les destinent Saloons clandestins conuête de la terre mine d’or trafic d’alcool Bo Mason héros américain par excellence se réinvente au fil des opportunités ui se pr?.
SUMMARY The Big Rock Candy Mountain
In the Big Rock Candy MountainsThere s a land that s fair and brightWhere the handouts grow on bushesAnd ou sleep out every nightWhere the boxcars all are emptyAnd the sun shines every dayOn the birds and the beesAnd the cigarette treesThe lemonade springsWhere the bluebird singsIn the Big Rock He had a notion where home would turn out to be for himself as for his father over the next range on the Big Rock Candy Mountain that place of impossible loveliness that had pulled the whole nation westward the place where the fat land sweated up wealth and the heavens dropped lemonade Imagine taking the painful childhood ou remember and turning it into a work of art such as this Using a good patient gentle mother and a violent ruthless father determined to bully the world into giving him what he wanted to show the value of the American spirit Writing about an older brother with so much promise who could never uite get it together Relating Desire and Deceive your own growth as a whining sensitive undersized boy who had to search inside himself for strength and endurance And showing us 30ears in the life of a family in the first half of the 20th century in the beautiful prose that foreshadowed his later works The book jacket says this is semi autobiographical but an internet search convinced me that it followed his own Dannys Dragon (Tao of Love, young life pretty accurately How doou take all that raw material and mold it into something like thisThis was published in 1943 when Stegner was 34 Household Gods years old Though not his first novel it was the first successful one Yes it s dense andes it s too long though I m not sure what he could have left out With Stegner Maos Little Red Book you never know whereou re going til Der Persönliche Erfolg you get there but he makes the journey memorableThis is a family saga that is worth the effort it takes with bothour time and emotional output I feel spent having finished this book I took time reading it than any book in recent memory and it wasn t only its 563 pages that made it a long read I had to read with a pen at the ready so many ideas and images and thoughts I wanted to highlightThe Big Rock Candy Mountain is a western book A character study A journey But not a there and back again book like Bilbo Baggins wrote It s a go and go again kind of journey searching ever further afield for that one thing that will make A history of Native America you happy always finding that it just slipped out ofour fingersBo Mason is that dreamer a schemer who will gamble on a sure thing following whatever lead will drop him on top of t I can in all honesty not say that this was one of my heartfelt best books ever But can say convincingly that it was an excellent autbiographical novel Perhaps there was a scattering of way too much words all over the tale Too long Too wordy So many novels have been written about the American west and the deeper meaning behind the search for get uick rich schemes the big rock candy mountain over the next rise something for nothing an improved world andor get away from man s own nature It often left the dreams shattered but the dreamers determined the longer they tried to find the pot of gold at the end of an ever elusive rainbow the further it moved out west I have great respect for this well known author for pouring out the good and bad memories into this personal tale of his life as part of his drifter family in the early twentieth century They followed the old Scandinavian tracts through the north west It must have been very painful to relate and share his memories to throw open his hurt anger frustrations heartbreak and embarrassment to a public he doesn t even know if he could trust However I do believe that it brought the clich d closure for himself and made him proud of the choices he made to overcome his personal family history Well he had so much to be proud of in the end If the bad was genetic the good was in there as well He just had to fill up the spaces between it How difficult was it to flesh out the characters their intimate lives their thoughts so that he could ensure understanding from
himself and his readers of his grandparents and parents decisions The frontierand his readers of his grandparents and parents decisions The frontier family was on was a belated one in the 1914 20s in Saskatchewan They were almost literary reproducing the Kansas frontier of the 1860s Boredom never entered the author s Huckleburry Finn world as a child his own description of his world His mother kept his brother and himself cultured as far as their constanct moving allowed His father was a folklore character with an explosive temper His brother who died oung was on his way to become a successful athlete if it wasn t for his father s constant bootlegging to keep food on the table A whiff of scandal surrounded the family as a result of his father s contstant new schemes with shady and dubious partners In an interview Wallace Stegner said that they were deprived of civilisation in many respects and he partners In an interview Wallace Stegner said that they were deprived of civilisation in many respects and he to try and catch up with it his entire life He has been in an acronysm all his life as a result He always felt like a nineteen century character caught in the twentieth century Wallace Stegner s roots were deeply established in the American west This novel is about their experiences in painful detail He created realistic characters to establish a believable trustworthy tale and leave the reader with a sense of awe but also empathy for those drifters who shaped modern America in so many ways This book is indeed about The Big Rock Candy Mountain and those people who took it on It is also about loyalty in a family and how destructive and intricate it becomes Hopeful but sad book For me at least Totally beside the point I noticed that Ken Kessey was one of Wallace Stegner s students in Creative Writing One Flew Over The Cuckoo s Nest is certainly one of the most iconic American novels ever written and for sure the best shameful example of how an author was screwed out of his words big time by his publishers who robbed him of his rights to royalties While the book is still in reprint for probably a millionth time selling even millions of copies Ken Kessey did not share in the bounty it generated In fact he hardly survived financially from other means of income he had to find until he passed away I In fact he hardly survived financially from other means of income he had to find until he passed away I thus so grateful for Wallace Stegner who made such a big difference to other people s lives after everything he had gone through in his own life This book is worth a read It nestles as much in the historical fiction genre as being an autobiographical novel at the same time The story of Bo Mason and Else He is a talented dreamer with a large dose of wanderlust who works hard at his dreams but seems to always see them drift away She is an escapee from an unhappy home who is smitten with Bo as an 18 ear old Marriage ensues children and hardship This is a great American saga covering the main characters from ado. Dakota 1905 La jeune Elsa a fui les plaines du Minnesota dans l’espoir de fonder un foyer Lorsu’elle rencontre Bo Mason bourlingueur en uête d’aventures et de fortune elle voit en lui la promesse d’un monde nouveau Elle n’i.