Charles Fraziers Thirteen Moons is the story of one
mans remarkable life, spanning a century of relentless change. At the
age of twelve, an orphan named Will Cooper is given a horse, a key, and
a map and is sent on a journey through the wilderness to the edge of
the Cherokee Nation, the uncharted white space on the map. Will is a
bound boy, obliged to run a remote Indian trading post. As he fulfills
his lonesome duty, Will finds a father in Bear, a Cherokee chief, and
is adopted by him and his people, developing relationships that
ultimately forge Wills character. All the while, his love of Claire,
the enigmatic and captivating charge of volatile and powerful
Featherstone, will forever rule Wills heart.
In a distinct voice
filled with both humor and yearning, Will tells of a lifelong search
for home, the hunger for fortune and adventure, the rebuilding of a
trampled culture, and above all an enduring pursuit of passion. As he
comes to realize, When all else is lost and gone forever, there is
yearning. One of the few welcome lessons age teaches is that only
desire trumps time."
Will Cooper, in the hands of Charles
Frazier, becomes a classic American soul: a man devoted to a place and
its people, a woman, and a way of life, all of which are forever just
beyond his reach. Thirteen Moons takes us from the
uncharted wilderness of an unspoiled continent, across the South, up
and down the Mississippi, and to the urban clamor of a raw Washington
City. Throughout, Will is swept along as the wild beauty of the
nineteenth century gives way to the telephones, automobiles, and
encroaching railways of the twentieth. Steeped in history, rich in
insight, and filled with moments of sudden beauty, Thirteen Moons is an unforgettable work of fiction by an American master.
After a strong start, my interest waned during the second half of the book, when things started to bog down - I turned the pages faster and faster, not because it was such a gripping read, but simply in the hope of finding something that would grip! (Reviewed by BookBrowse Review Team).
Longer and even duller than Cold Mountain....reading Frazier is like sitting by the cracker barrel for hour after hour and listening to an amiable but impossibly gassy guy who talks real slow, says "I reckon" a whole lot and never shuts up. His novels have little structure and not much in the way of plot.
Gorgeous…calls Cold Mountain to mind in its wonder at the natural world; its pacificist undercurrents; its dismay at the dismantling of what matters, and its convication that one love, no matter how tortured and inexplicable, can be life-defining…fascinating…vivid and alive.
Los Angeles Times Thirteen Moons is rare in many ways and occupies a literary plane of such height that reviewing it is not really salient….Thirteen Moons has the power to inspire great performances from succeeding generations of writers….For those who simply value the literary experience, Thirteen Moons will provide the immense satisfaction of taking a literary journey of magnitude. Whether on a plane, in an office or curled in a window seat, readers who absorb Will's story will find their own lives enriched….Thirteen Moons belongs to the ages.
A boisterous, confident novel that draws from the epic tradition... Frazier is a natural storyteller, and throughout his picaresque tale are grand themes and eulogies.
This work gets more unbelievable as it goes on....the Natives are stock characters, Will himself lacks depth and complexity...a tiresome novel.
Booklist - Brad Hooper
For the first fourth of the book, there is too much detail for the plot to easily bear. But, finally, the characters are able to step out from behind this blanket of particulars and incidentals and make the story work.
Thirteen Moons brings this vanished world thrillingly to life...one of the great Native American -- and American -- stories, and a great gift to all of us, from one of our very best writers.
Starred Review. The history that Frazier hauntingly unwinds through Will is as melodic as it is melancholy, but the sublime love story is the narrative's true heart.
Recent Reader Reviews
Rated of 5
by Karen Thirteen Moons is wonderful! I stumbled upon this book because it had a lot of Native American and Cherokee information in it. (I avidly read any historical fiction that I can get my hands on.) I had not read Cold Mountain, so I had no preformed opinion.
I am on my... Read More
Rated of 5
by gill sones superbly written I thought Cold Mountain was good but this book is just excellent! I have just finished reading it for the second time and because of the superb way it is written, I found images in it I had missed on the first reading. I rushed it the first time... Read More
Rated of 5
by rezgrrl A Different Perspective A self professed book snob, I have been reading and loving classic literature from a very early age. Many years ago I picked up Cold Mountain because I knew that Frazer is from the same mountain region as I. It left me stunned and amazed, and in... Read More
Rated of 5
by Steve Ricards Thirteen Moons Somewhere within this rambling, inconsistent novel there's a good book - or maybe two or three good books, if you can find them. Just enough worthwhile storytelling to give it my recommendation.
Rated of 5
by William Oakley
Frazier is a good writer. Cold Mountain was better as a book than as a movie. 13 Moons should make a better movie. I liked the recipes for snake and squirrel as humor (I would not cook either). But there are other good recipes scattered... Read More
Rated of 5
by ken Thin Plot, Insufficiently Described Characters--Just OK Taken as a whole, this book was a bit of a disappointment. Having finished the book minutes ago, I realize that I never truly understood the main characters, Will, Claire and Bear. Since I never really came to know them, I couldn't fully... Read More
Charles Frazier was born in 1950 in Asheville, North Carolina and grew up in
the mountains of North Carolina. He graduated from the University of North
Carolina in 1973, received an M.A. from Appalachian State University, and
a Ph.D. in English from the University of South Carolina in 1986.
His first novel, Cold Mountain, was an international bestseller, and
won the National Book Award in 1997. It traces the journey of Inman, a
wounded deserter from the Confederate army. The story is based in part on
Frazier's great-great-uncle , W. P. Inman. A movie adaptation was
released in 2003.
His second novel, Thirteen Moons, was
published in 2006, with an $8 million advance from his USA publisher. He
currently raises horses on a farm near Raleigh, North Carolina, where he lives
with his wife, Catherine, who teaches accountancy, and their daughter Annie.
The inspiration for Thirteen Moons lies in Frazier's childhood growing up on
the land that the Cherokee people had lived on a century before...
A humorous and poignant memoir of an educated and cultured woman who came of age in Appalachia. A story of relationships, the challenges and consequences of choice, and the impact of the past on the present.
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