( Read E-pub ) · Dalva ⛏ eBook or Kindle ePUB free

( Read E-pub ) Þ Dalva Ú From her home on the California coast, Dalva hears the broad silence of the Nebraska prairie where she was born and longs for the son she gave up for adoption years before Beautiful, fearless, tormented, at forty five she has lived a life of lovers and adventures Now, Dalva begins a journey that will take her back to the bosom of her family, to the half Sioux lover of her youth, and to a pioneering great grandfather whose journals recount the bloody annihilation of the Plains Indians On the way, she discovers a story that stretches from East to West, from the Civil War to Wounded Knee and Vietnam and finds the balm to heal her wild and wounded soul This is my first book by Jim Harrison First, Harrison is a very good writer He has all the moves, he knows what he is doing, and he does what he does as well as anyone else This book was warm, occasionally wise, often amusing particularly Michael and Lundquist , and threaded with enough adventure the Northridge diaries to keep a reader committed to seeing how everything will end The bad The structure of the novel didn t really work for me part 1, Dalva s 1st person journal to her son This is my first book by Jim Harrison First, Harrison is a very good writer He has all the moves, he knows what he is doing, and he does what he does as well as anyone else This book was warm, occasionally wise, often amusing particularly Michael and Lundquist , and threaded with enough adventure the Northridge diaries to keep a reader committed to seeing how everything will end The bad The structure of the novel didn t really work for me part 1, Dalva s 1st person journal to her son part 2, Michael s 1st person diary and part 3,of Dalva s 1st person narrative except she is no longer writing to her son or did I miss something This was by no means fatal, but it did seem loose to me as an idea I also found myself bored bythan a few passages in part 3 like Dalva s fevered dreaming Nevertheless, I admire this effort by Harrison I questioned and still question whether he could capture a true female voice I think he failed because he channeled what a man s man kind of woman might think and feel and look like For the record, she s hot, has always been hot, and even at the forbidden line of 45 years young, every type of man desires her openly she has a young lover in image obsessed Santa Monica, of course She eats big, drinks big she eats steak alone she is sexually liberated but no whore she is kind to fools she is loyal to her heart she rides horses hard in the country she skinny dips in bodies of water and she is a camper who sleeps naked under the stars It is not my intent to sound snarky this is how we know Dalva, in her own voice As to the surprise s at the end of the book Well, they re a bitman s man melodramaticbut they work well enough I started this book without any preconceptions and through most of the book I was engaged Was I moved No Did I feel myself in the presence of genius No Did I believe Dalva was real No Do I still admire Harrison s effort I said that already This is a good book Embedded in this brilliant novel is this single poignant sentence Back on the front porch, I saw her in the far corner of the yard, pushing an empty tire swing as if it held an imaginary child.Jim Harrison can raise a lump in your throat By this point in the book we are already in love with Dalva She is 45, beyond intelligent, fetching, equal parts sentimental and pragmatic She is as self sufficient as it is possible to be She can, as they say, ride a horse When she was a young girl, she fe Embedded in this brilliant novel is this single poignant sentence Back on the front porch, I saw her in the far corner of the yard, pushing an empty tire swing as if it held an imaginary child.Jim Harrison can raise a lump in your throat By this point in the book we are already in love with Dalva She is 45, beyond intelligent, fetching, equal parts sentimental and pragmatic She is as self sufficient as it is possible to be She can, as they say, ride a horse When she was a young girl, she fell hard for Duane Stone Horse quite the young man but not necessarily the kind you wanted in your living room The resultant child was taken from her, an adoption arranged In this book, Dalva is searching for her son and searching for her history as well It is America s history, not all parades and ruffles and flourishes But it s so muchI woke yesterday, not hungover, but I hadn t slept well I opened Dalva Uncharacteristically, I had left my bookmark in the middle of a section, apparently worn out the night before right there What followed was three pages that I think show why Harrison has such a purchase on my reading soul Ruth arrived at the last minute before dinner, running late because she had been reading a book called Arctic Dreamsand had been carried awayThat stopped me First, because Arctic Dreams by Barry Lopez is one of my favorite books That will always get my attention But I also loved the casual way Harrison brought it up Never even mentioned the author s name Just a little tip of the cap He makes acryptic reference to Peter Matthiessen s The Snow Leopard later, naming neither the author nor title But I also loved how it served its literary purpose So many things could have made Ruth late a flat tire, a phone call, an unexpected visitor This reference wasn t for everyone But for me, yes, I understood exactly why Ruth could be carried away and thus late.Ruth, Dalva s sister, was late for an impromptu dinner hosted by Uncle Paul Their father, Paul s brother, was killed in the Korean War Paul has conspired to invite Fred, a neighbor, as a possible match for either Dalva or Ruth This is Dalva s take on Fred It turned out she Ruth rather liked Paul s neighbor, Fred, the divorced rancher I felt noncommittal about him after a half hour s chat he wore slightly too much cologne, his informal ranch clothes were too precisely tailored and didn t seem quite comfortable, the sort of clothes a CEO would wear at a chuck wagon outing at a Phoenix convention He was terribly bright and knowledgeable, but lacked the indentations, the unique character traits I look for in men I imagined he ate donuts with a fork and folded his underpants This trace of bitchiness in me reminded me of what my Santa Monica gynecologist friend had told me that I was too autolelic, i.e., I only did things for and of themselves and lacked an overall game plan At least with Fred there were no edges against which one could bruise he had taken care of himself so well he d likely grow old and die in a single minute when the time was appropriate.Irritated by Fred, Uncle Paul offers his own thoughtsYou can t make the desert represent a freedom you should have organized for yourself in your bedroom or living room That s what is so otiose about nearly all nature writing People naturally shed their petty and inordinate grievances in the natural world, then resume them when the sheer novelty dissipates We always destroy wilderness when we make it represent something else, because that something else can always fall out of fashion Freedom to the all terrain vehicle addict, the mining and oil and timber companies, has always meant the absolute license to do as they wish, while heritage is a word brought up by politicians to recall a virtue they can t quite remember The only traceable heritage related to our use of the land is to exhaust it.Of course, on a metaphoric level the desert is an unfathomably intricate prison, and you may understandably wish to play with this fact, comparing it to your own life By not letting places be themselves we show our contempt for them We bury them in sentiment, then suffocate them to death in one way or another I can ruin both the desert and the Museum of Modern Art in New York by carrying to them an insufferable load of distinctions that disallows actually seeing the flora and fauna or the paintings Children are usually better at finding mushrooms and arrowheads because they are either ignorant or unwilling to carry the load Embarrassed by his speech, Paul asks Ruth to play something morose and sentimental on the piano Dalva watches She began with a harpsichord imitation, lapsed into a polka, then slid into the Debussy she knew Paul favored In turn he laughed, closed his eyes, then smiled When I looked at him I couldn t help wondering what sort of man my father would have become I stopped and looked outside The first frost was painting the grass It would kill the basil but not the flowers Not yet.I thought of love I thought of history I thought of my father I thought of the magic of just three pages.This is supposed to be the Year of Reading Proust I found Jim Harrison two months ago It s late in the year, but I ve compulsively made this my Year of Reading Harrison Next year too I had a lot in common with the late, great author Jim Harrison Just like me, he loved nature and the outdoors, fine food spirits, and pheasant hunting His writing is both poetic and profound, and is often quite hilarious Sadly, he passed away a few years ago I have read several of Harrison s books, but I think DALVA is my favorite One thing that I liked best about this novel was that a majority of it was set in the sand hills of Nebraska, which is in the north central part of the state I I had a lot in common with the late, great author Jim Harrison Just like me, he loved nature and the outdoors, fine food spirits, and pheasant hunting His writing is both poetic and profound, and is often quite hilarious Sadly, he passed away a few years ago I have read several of Harrison s books, but I think DALVA is my favorite One thing that I liked best about this novel was that a majority of it was set in the sand hills of Nebraska, which is in the north central part of the state I grew up in Iowa, but my parents were transplants from Nebraska So, every summer when I was a kid we made the pilgrimage west to my grandma s house in Cozad to visit family and friends Needless to say, I was pretty familiar with the landscape and the kind of people Jim Harrison tells about in this book, especially back in the 1980 s when this story takes place Dalva Northridge comes from a wealthy ranching family with a fascinating past Her great grandfather Northridge was one of the few white men in Nebraska who tried to help the Sioux tribes in the late 19th century He became friends with them, providing aid and comfort and support as our government was killing them, usurping their lands, and forcing survivors onto reservations Northridge also kept journals of his life that remain in the family s possession For decades, scholars have yearned to get their hands on these papers, but the family has refused to share them So at 45, Dalva decides to leave her home in California and return to her ancestral ranch in Nebraska Her deceased grandfather was half Sioux, and willed her the homestead Accompanying her is Michael, a self absorbed Stanford professor and love interest, who the family has finally granted permission to read the old journals and write a book about their history One condition of Michael s reward is that he has also promised to help Dalva find her son, a baby she was forced to give up for adoption at the age of 16.There is a beautiful richness to Harrison s prose and he does such a masterful job of fleshing out his characters They feel like real people I have known Dalva, Michael, Naomi, grandfather Northridge, Duane Stone Horse, Frieda, Lundquist, Paul, and Ruth are all brought vividly to life by Harrison s savory language I loved so many aspects of this great novel DALVA I liked living a great deal, but there was nothing in me that regretted growing older PAUL By not letting natural places be themselves we show our contempt for them MICHAEL I chose the Nebraska area several years ago for a book, because I drove through the state and it seemed charmingly simpleminded DALVA I wondered at the power of my melancholy in Santa Monica which accepted the idea that this brilliant nitwit would find my son in exchange for our history Three point five stars.There are several male authors who are generally regarded as having a great ability to write from the perspective of a female character When I read these authors I disagree with the assessment, most notably because they fail to capture the true complexity that is the essence of being a woman Jim Harrison is an exception With the character of Dalva, he explores all the layers of conflict and identity that are part of growing up female in a patriarchal society.Dalva, at t Three point five stars.There are several male authors who are generally regarded as having a great ability to write from the perspective of a female character When I read these authors I disagree with the assessment, most notably because they fail to capture the true complexity that is the essence of being a woman Jim Harrison is an exception With the character of Dalva, he explores all the layers of conflict and identity that are part of growing up female in a patriarchal society.Dalva, at the age of 45, leaves California and returns to her native Nebraska There she confronts all of her ghosts and finally recognizes that she has defined her entire life by the males she has loved and lost her grandfather, father, first love, and then the son she was made to give up for adoption As the book comes to an end, there s a glimmer of hope that she ll put the past to rest and start living for the present The subplot deals with Dalva s Sioux heritage She s only one eighth Indian, but her white great grandfather was a great friend of the Sioux and left many journals The secrets are slowly revealed as a Stanford scholar works his way through the journals This novel contains some excellent writing with uniquely expressed wisdom about society and life in general I could not give it a higher rating because its construction is rather laborious and convoluted, making the reader work too hard to unearth the treasures