I bought this book from my local second hand book store. Cather was one of those authors I felt I should read, but hadn’t yet got around to it.
An enduring literary masterpiece first published in 1918, this hauntingly eloquent classic is an inspiring reminder of the rich past we have inherited. Willa Cather’s lustrous prose, infused with a passion for the land, summons forth the hard scrabble days of the immigrant pioneer women on the Nebraska plains, while etching a deeply moving portrait of an entire community. As Jim Burden, revisits his childhood friendship with the free-spirited Antonia Shimerda, we come to understand the sheer fortitude of homesteaders on the prairie, the steadfast bonds cultivated there, and the abiding memories that such vast expanses inspire. Holding the pastoral society’s heart, of course, is the bewitching Antonia, whose unfailing industry and infectious enthusiasm for life exemplify the triumphant vitality of an era.
I haven’t read much American Literature – Canadian yes – but not American. I’m also quite ignorant of American history, so from that point of view this book was very enlightening. I enjoyed reading about life on the prairie – all of the details about cooking, gardening, keeping warm in winter etc. However, I did struggle to read this book and I don’t think I’ll be reading anything else by Cather.
Here are some other reviews …