So Big by Edna Ferber is going to take some time for me to mull over. It was an enjoyable novel, albeit scattered. It was published in 1924, and won the Pulitzer in 1925. It is a novel that strives to find beauty in the ordinary. It rejects modern materialism while seeking to expose the new … Continue reading The Pursuit of Beauty in Edna Ferber’s So Big
I finally finished the next Pulitzer Prize-winning novel on my list after dragging my feet for much of the summer. It is altogether difficult to go from reading the beautiful rolling novels of the great American pioneer writer, Willa Cather, to the bland landscapes of Margaret Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning book, The Able McLaughlins. The problem with … Continue reading The Unremarkable Able McLaughlins
I recently detoured from reading the Pulitzer Prize-winning novels to venture into the harsh but pleasantly forgiving fields of Willa Cather's pioneers on the prairie. "Wasatch Mountains and Great Plains in distance, Nebraska" by Albert Bierstadt in 1877 When Willa Cather was thirty-nine years old she wrote her first novel, Alexander's Bridge, which was published … Continue reading The Harsh But Forgiving Prairie in O Pioneers!
One of Ours is a surprisingly deep and powerful novel. In truth, it is two stories told in five parts: Book I "On Lovely Creek", Book II "Enid", Book III "Sunrise on the Prairie", Book IV "The Voyage of the Anchises", Book V "Bidding the Eagles of the West Fly On". The title of Book … Continue reading The Pioneer Spirit in One of Ours
The Magnificent Ambersons (1918) is the second novel to win the Pulitzer Prize. Its author, Booth Tarkington, is one of the few writers to ever win the Pulitzer twice (amazingly, he won it again for Alice Adams in 1922). With these accolades, he joins the exclusive club of William Faulkner and John Updike who also both won … Continue reading Thoughts on The Magnificent Ambersons
The quiet simplicity of Marilynne Robinson's Gilead is charming. For what the novel lacks in plot, it makes up for in style. The form of Gilead is a series of somber reflections. In essence, it is the fictional autobiography of Reverend John Ames of small town Iowa (the fictional town is called "Gilead" named for the Biblical … Continue reading The Quiet Simplicity of Gilead