A Novel

Book - 2011
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The extraordinary author of Cold Mountain and Thirteen Moons returns with a dazzling new novel of suspense and love set in small-town North Carolina in the early 1960s.
Charles Frazier puts his remarkable gifts in the service of a lean, taut narrative while losing none of the transcendent prose, virtuosic storytelling, and insight into human nature that have made him one of the most beloved and celebrated authors in the world. Now, with his brilliant portrait of Luce, a young woman who inherits her murdered sister's troubled twins, Frazier has created his most memorable heroine.
Before the children, Luce was content with the reimbursements of the rich Appalachian landscape, choosing to live apart from the small community around her. But the coming of the children changes everything, cracking open her solitary life in difficult, hopeful, dangerous ways.
Charles Frazier is known for his historical literary odysseys, and for making figures in the past come vividly to life. Set in the twentieth century, Nightwoods resonates with the timelessness of a great work of art.
Publisher: New York : Random House, c2011.
ISBN: 9781400067091
Characteristics: 259 p. ;,25 cm.


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ArapahoeAnnaL Aug 16, 2018

In this historical novel, set in the 1960's in a small town in rural North Carolina, Frazier shares his love of the country with gorgeous descriptions of the woods and mountains. The scene at the top of a mountain after a snow and ice storm is one of almost unearthly beauty.

Regarding character and plot the first line of the book, "Luce's new stranger children were small and beautiful and violent," sets the expectation that this will be an original and compelling story, which it is. The action at the end is page-turner exciting.

It is easy to relate to the villain as he gives himself pep talks and tries to think logically. That someone capable of terribly violent acts against friends and family is also on some kind of continuum with the reader, is an interesting idea to contemplate.

Dec 03, 2014

Charles Frazier is a beautiful writer. He has a way with words that creates incredibly vivid worlds and characters. I found myself drawn into Nightwoods from the start. Luce is a woman who likes to live apart from everyone else. She finds her solitary existence in a run-down former lodge in the North Carolina mountains to be enough for her. When she is suddenly given care of her late sister's twins, she finds her life upturned. The children are quite strange--perhaps even damaged. Frazier weaves a beautiful tale as Luce finds ways to reach the children, despite their oddities. I truly enjoyed watching her learn how to connect with these children. The novel also follows 2 side tales--one of a the grandson of a local who comes back to town (and finds love with Luce) and one of the children's step-dad, a criminal named Bud who is bent on finding the money he thinks the children stole from him.

One comment on Frazier's writing. It is not light in any way. If you're looking for a fast read, or something that doesn't require a little bit of thought, you'd be better off looking elsewhere. I found passages of this book somewhat difficult to get through--particularly later in the novel and especially those ones focused on Bud. Most novels speed up for me as they go along--as they draw me in. And this one, kind of slowed down some for me. It's just the lazy reader in me that had a problem, though, so I can't really complain about Frazier's writing.

gracindaisy Feb 18, 2013

In the North Carolina mountains, a young woman who inherits her murdered sister’s troubled twins, changing her solitary life in difficult, hopeful, dangerous ways. Superlative writing and suspense!

Jan 04, 2013

Oh , my - once again - snakes , vicious knife wounds , strong women complicated men , and a great story ! Bravo , Charles Frazier !

Jan 25, 2012

Could not put it down - very suspenseful. I love the way he writes! I don't think I would read it at night, if I was alone - pretty scary.

lilylibrarian Dec 19, 2011

A book about survival, both in harsh physical conditions, and from emotional damage. Experience has made Luce isolate herself in an abandoned and dilapidated resort lodge until the murder of her sister leaves her in charge of two abused and silent preschoolers who soothe their fear by killing chickens and starting fires. Both suitor and murderer soon appear to further complicate her life.

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