Born mute, speaking only in sign, Edgar Sawtelle leads an idyllic life with his parents on their farm in remote northern Wisconsin. For generations, the Sawtelles have raised and trained a fictional breed of dog whose thoughtful companionship is epitomized by Almondine, Edgar's lifelong friend and ally. But with the unexpected return of Claude, ...
Born mute, speaking only in sign, Edgar Sawtelle leads an idyllic life with his parents on their farm in remote northern Wisconsin. For generations, the Sawtelles have raised and trained a fictional breed of dog whose thoughtful companionship is epitomized by Almondine, Edgar's lifelong friend and ally. But with the unexpected return of Claude, Edgar's paternal uncle, turmoil consumes the Sawtelles' once peaceful home. When Edgar's father dies suddenly, Claude insinuates himself into the life of the farm--and into Edgar's mother's affections. Grief-stricken and bewildered, Edgar tries to prove Claude played a role in his father's death, but his plan backfires--spectacularly. Forced to flee into the vast wilderness lying beyond the farm, Edgar comes of age in the wild, fighting for his survival and that of the three yearling dogs who follow him. But his need to face his father's murderer and his devotion to the Sawtelle dogs turn Edgar ever homeward. David Wroblewski is a master storyteller, and his breathtaking scenes--the elemental north woods, the sweep of seasons, an iconic American barn, a fateful vision rendered in the falling rain--create a riveting family saga, a brilliant exploration of the limits of language, and a compulsively readable modern classic.
Very good. Appearance of only slight previous use. Cover and binding show a little wear. All pages are undamaged with potentially only a few, small markings. Help save a tree. Buy all your used books from Thriftbooks. Read. Recycle and Reuse.
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Thank you! This book arrived timely & in good condition.
Have a very happy New Year!
Kathleen S Vaccaro
Jun 7, 2010
Great story, great book in the exact condition as advertised. Shipped in a timely manner and well packaged.
Mar 6, 2010
I felt that this book had many different themes and subplots. As some of the other reviewers stated, I thought that the ending was convoluted and disappointing. I usually finish a book feeling inspired and ready to write a poem based on the literary message that I had inferred from the book. When I read Eat, Pay, and Love and The Alchemist I was filled with sentiment and was inspired to write meaningful poems. I wish the author had resolved some of the mysteries in the story and had not left us dangling in suspense after completing the last page of the book. I was looking for an epilogue to follow the final page. I would like to mention something that none of the other reviewers noticed or pointed out. Edgar was a boy who could not communicate to his fellow humans. As a special education teacher, I realize how frustrating that is to a person, especially a young boy who is entering adolesence. He was curious as to his existence and the family dynamics. His inability to communicate with his parents and receive the proper answers only added to his angst. The only relationship that I fully understood was the one that Edgar had with his friend Henry who was a bit inhibitied and had self-esteem issues also. All in all, the book was interesting and I was fuly absorbed with the last part of the book although quite disappointed when I finally reached the ending only to be led into complete oblivion.
Dec 31, 2009
Slow and dull
Someone recommended this because she had read it with her book club and I found myself with a doorstop of a Sominex tablet in the form of hundreds of pages about a fictional breed of dog and some family shenagigans very loosely based on "Hamlet." More than you've ever wanted to know about breeding dogs and building kennels.
Sep 24, 2009
Engaging but not uplifting
The story of Edgar Sawtelle has many twists and turns. Our book club had an excellent discussion of it because there is so much to talk about. If you know that it it is loosely based on Hamlet, then you won't be too surprised that the ending is not going to be a happy one.
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