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The Country of the Pointed Firs and Other Stories (1896)

af Sarah Orne Jewett

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MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
8902517,794 (3.89)29
The Country of the Pointed Firs (1896) is Sarah Orne Jewett's most popular book. In its elegantly constructed sketches, a worldly, anonymous writer spends the summer in a tiny Maine fishing village where she hopes to find peace and solitude. As she gains the acceptance and trust of her hosts, the community's power and complexity are slowly revealed. While its episodes portray the difficulty and loneliness of rural life, they also display its dignity and strength, particularly as expressed in the bonds between women: mothers, daughters, and friends. This centennial edition contains a facsimile of the original text, thereby restoring the novel to Jewett's own version, which had been considerably altered in other published versions, plus four related stories. Further enhancing the importance of this volume is editor Sarah Way Sherman's introduction, which includes a sketch of Jewett's life and professional development, a commentary on textual accuracy, and a discussion of the book's themes and techiques as well as its historical context.… (mere)
  1. 40
    Cranford af Elizabeth Gaskell (InfoQuest)
    InfoQuest: In both Gaskell and Jewett's novels, a young woman (the first-person narrator) comes to visit a rural community in a series of related vignettes. Jewett's is the more poetic, and Gaskell's is the more humorous, but both are lovely little books which center on the experiences and relationships of women in the 19th century.… (mere)
  2. 00
    The Edge of Darkness af Mary Ellen Chase (CurrerBell)
    CurrerBell: Mary Ellen Chase was the "successor" to Sarah Orne Jewett among Maine regionalists. The Edge of Darkness, which apparently was Chase's own favorite among her works, has a definite resemblance to The Country of the Pointed Firs as a collection of vignettes that are united around a central character.… (mere)
  3. 11
    Castle Nowhere af Constance Fenimore Woolson (CurrerBell)
    CurrerBell: Lovers of Jewett might also want to investigate the less well known Constance Fenimore Woolson (a contemporary and friend of Henry James), some of whose earlier writings include regionalism similar to Jewett's. In particular, Woolson's Castle Nowhere stories are of Michigan's Mackinac Island and partly united by a common narrator, much as in Pointed Firs… (mere)
  4. 00
    Anne fra Grønnebakken af L. M. Montgomery (cransell)
    cransell: The Country of Pointed Firs really reminded me of Anne of Green Gables - although not at all focused of a child or growing up. But if you enjoy one, you'll likely enjoy the other.
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this has been on my to-read list for years, and i finally picked it up this fall. i've only just read the main novella; i'd really like to read the stories after it, but i'm just not in a place to do that with any reasonable speed right now. i really wanted to be absorbed by this more than i was, and maybe i will be some other time - it wasn't as plot driven as the stuff i've been reading lately, and i had to force myself to get chapters done here and there. maybe next time! ( )
  beautifulshell | Aug 27, 2020 |
It could take you a day to read The Country of the Painted Firs. A mere 88 pages in length, you could spend just an afternoon with Ms. Jewett's novel. That being said, I urge you to take more time with this sweet little book. This is portrait of turn of the century coastal Maine living at its simplest and most honest. Jewett illustrates a time when hospitality, good manners, friendship and community mattered most. While there is not much of a plot, the characters are carefully crafted. Today, the people you meet throughout all of Maine are just as colorful and hard working as they were in Jewett's fictional town of Dunnet Landing. The statement, "One trade helps another" as one character says, is as true today as it was in 1896 when Country of the Pointed Firs was first published. ( )
  SeriousGrace | Jul 30, 2020 |
Read 2017. ( )
  sasameyuki | May 15, 2020 |
Jewett’s novel The Country of the Pointed Firs is the culmination of the regional characters, themes, and techniques that Jewett explored for so many years. It is a composite novel organized around alternating currents of separation and reunion, Jewett never wrote a conventionally-plotted novel, and in this tale a visiting writer-narrator from the city is slowly changed from an outsider into an initiated insider in the life of the largely female community of Dunnet Landing, a tiny seacoast village in Maine. The first chapter, titled “Return”, represents a reunion of sorts in that the narrator is returning to a place with which she previously fell in love. After that very short opening she is quickly drawn into the world of her landlady, Mrs. Almira Todd, the local herbalist who seems to possess a special spiritual outlook.

Soon the narrator feels the need to separate so that she can complete the writing project she brought with her. After listening to a strange tale about a limbo-like “waiting place” between this world and the next in the fog-bound arctic regions, the narrator reunites with Mrs. Todd, and they both discover that their relationship has improved in mutual consideration and empathy as a result of the separation. They have achieved a balance between the basic human needs for both connection and separation. This alternating pattern of separation and reunion continues in a number of different ways throughout the novel, ending with the narrator’s departure from Dunnet Landing.

Dunnet Landing and the surrounding country is populated with charming characters whose stories fill the spaces between the description of the lovely Maine north country. One of those characters, Captain Littlepage, had time for both sailing and reading. The latter activity was evidently also a pastime of the narrator who dotted the narrative with references to Shakespeare, Milton, and others.

The scenery is captured in moments like this:
"We were standing where there was a fine view of the harbor and its long stretches of shore all covered by the great army of the pointed firs, darkly cloaked and standing as if they waited to embark. As we looked far seaward among the outer islands, the trees seemed to march seaward still, going steadily over the heights and down to the water's edge."(p. 33)

The chill in the air on winter nights was tempered by the heat from a Franklin Stove (no doubt very much like the one in my sister's home in the high country of northeastern Nevada). One of the best moments in the story was the Bowden family reunion that brought together many of the people from the area in a way that you can only experience in small out of the way communities like Dunnet Landing.

The Country of the Pointed Firs was greeted with strongly positive reviews. Indeed, a few years later, Jewett's friend Willa Cather would rate it as one of the three great classics of American literature (the other two being The Scarlet Letter and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn). I'm not sure I agree completely with Cather, but this is a fine short novel depicting late nineteenth century Americana. ( )
  jwhenderson | Dec 1, 2019 |
Not sure how I got to be 49 and never read any Sarah Orne Jewett. I liked this very much - for its rich descriptions of coastal Maine and the beautiful relationships between the women in the community. And I liked the way it wasn;'t quite a novel but not short stories either. Willa Cather said about it "The design is the story and the story the design". I'm pondering that. ( )
1 stem laurenbufferd | Nov 15, 2016 |
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Jewett, Sarah Orneprimær forfatteralle udgaverbekræftet
Burke, ShirleyIllustratormedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
Cather, WillaPrefacemedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
Chase, Mary EllenIntroduktionmedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
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There was something about the coast town of Dunnet which made it seem more attractive than other maritime villages of eastern Maine.
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The Country of the Pointed Firs (1896) is Sarah Orne Jewett's most popular book. In its elegantly constructed sketches, a worldly, anonymous writer spends the summer in a tiny Maine fishing village where she hopes to find peace and solitude. As she gains the acceptance and trust of her hosts, the community's power and complexity are slowly revealed. While its episodes portray the difficulty and loneliness of rural life, they also display its dignity and strength, particularly as expressed in the bonds between women: mothers, daughters, and friends. This centennial edition contains a facsimile of the original text, thereby restoring the novel to Jewett's own version, which had been considerably altered in other published versions, plus four related stories. Further enhancing the importance of this volume is editor Sarah Way Sherman's introduction, which includes a sketch of Jewett's life and professional development, a commentary on textual accuracy, and a discussion of the book's themes and techiques as well as its historical context.

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