I surrender. To explain in a few paragraphs a story that ranges from the frozen gold fields of the Yukon to the yellow fever swelter of Cuban hillsides, from the racial turmoil of post-Reconstruction North Carolina to the most humble, remote village in the Philippines, is a fool's errand. So let me dispense with any attempt at summary and cut straight to the chase - if an unrelenting commitment to showing action as it unfolds in vivid (and even painful) detail excites you, read John Sayles's novel. He had me hooked by page ten, following the hopeless greenhorn Hod Brackenridge up a death-defying slope in the Alaskan wilderness. What kept me interested through the nearly 1,000 pages that followed was Sayles's uncanny ability to find complexity in all of his characters, revealing the conflicted motives that drive them to pursue their desires.
If there is one unifying theme of the book,...
John Sayles spent years researching the turn-of-the-century world of A Moment in the Sun. Click here to see some of the photos that helped shape each chapter and to read John's notes on some of the historical details that crop up in the text. For more information on the books John consulted, click on his extended bibliography.
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