Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Turn the Page...Tuesday

It's time again for another installment of TTPT. The past few weeks I've been making my way Through PLAINSONG By Kent Haruf. Plainsong is monophonic -- consisting of a single, unaccompanied melodic line. It is in free, rather than measured, rhythm. Plainsong often uses the lengthy reverberations and resonant modes of cathedrals to create harmonies..

This book is like a slow dance with a comfortable partner. It centers around 7 main characters living in the town of Holt, CO. When I picked this book up for 25 cents at a garage sale Mother's Day weekend I was attracted by the title. A musical term for a style of music I enjoy, Plainsong grabbed my attention. I wondered how the author would incorporate written word into the definition.

The style of writing he uses would get any freshman English student into a lot of trouble. But like The Mail Man has explained to me before, you have to learn the rules before you can break them. Haruf must have passed E101. He uses a very friendly, spoken word style of writing to wind us through the lives of the characters seamlessly and comfortably.

When small town girl Victoria finds herself in the family way she seeks help from the central character of the book, Maggie Jones. Maggie takes her to a salty pair of bachelor farmers who take her in and care for her. Meanwhile Maggie is involved with the father of Ike and Bobby. Two young twin boys who've been abandoned by their mother and left to figure things out for themselves.

Though this book wasn't particularly uplifting, it was enjoyable because it felt so familiar and comfortable. The writing is smooth and the characters are well developed. I recommend it for a quiet, melancholy summer read.

Enjoy more book reviews over at Some of A Kind, and get your summer reading list all set up.

4 comments:

  1. That sounds interesting ... I do have to admit I had some (not so happy) flashbacks to E101. Ha!

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  2. And we all need quiet summer reads. Good review, makes me want to find this one.

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  3. I keep looking, picking up, but not getting this book. I don't know why. Next time I'm at the library I'll get it for sure!

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  4. Yes, this one I've picked up and almost checked-out from the library many times. Next time I see it I won't pass it by. Lovely summation!

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