Summary and book reviews of Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier

Cold Mountain

by Charles Frazier

Cold Mountain
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  • First Published:
    Jun 1997, 356 pages
    Paperback:
    Aug 1998, 449 pages

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Book Summary

A magnificent love story, Cold Mountain is the tale of a wounded Confederate soldier, Inman, who walks away from the ravages of the war and back home to his pre-war sweetheart.

A magnificent love story, Cold Mountain is the tale of a wounded Confederate soldier, Inman, who walks away from the ravages of the war and back home to his pre-war sweetheart, Ada. Inman's odyssey through the devastated landscape of the soon-to-be-defeated South interweaves with Ada's struggle to revive her father's farm with the help of an intrepid young drifter named Ruby. As their long-separated lives begin to converge at the close of the war, Inman and Ada confront the vastly transformed world in which they now live.

The Shadow of a Crow

At the first gesture of morning, flies began stirring. Inman's eyes and the long wound at his neck drew them, and the sound of their wings and the touch of their feet were soon more potent than a yardful of roosters in rousing a man to wake. So he came to yet one more day in the hospital ward. He flapped the flies away with his hands and looked across the foot of his bed to an open triple-hung window. Ordinarily he could see to the red road and the oak tree and the low brick wall. And beyond them to a sweep of fields and flat piney woods that stretched to the western horizon. The view was a long one for the flatlands, the hospital having been built on the only swell within eyeshot. But it was too early yet for a vista. The window might as well have been painted grey.

Had it not been too dim, Inman would have read to pass the time until breakfast, for the book he was reading had the effect of settling his mind. But he had burned up the last of his ...

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!
The questions, discussion topics, and suggested reading list that follow are intended to enhance your group's reading of Charles Frazier's Cold Mountain. We hope they will provide new insights and ways of looking at this stunning novel. The Civil War is wearily entering its last, grisly year. Inman, a veteran of the Petersburg and Fredericksburg campaigns, recovering from his wounds in a Confederate hospital, decides he has had enough of the pointless slaughter and walks out, heading across the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina toward Cold Mountain, where he hopes to reclaim his spiritual homeland and Ada, the woman he loves. It is to be an unforgettable odyssey through the soon-to-be-defeated South, with Inman pursued by ...
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Reviews

Media Reviews

San Francisco Chronicle

Charles Frazier's first novel is a rare and extraordinary book, a Civil War novel concerned less with battlefields than with the landscape of the human soul.

Publisher's Weekly

Rich in evocative physical detail and timeless human insight.

Author Blurb John Berendt
Cold Mountain is a heartbreakingly beautiful story, elegantly told and utterly convincing down to the last haunting detail.

Author Blurb Willie Morris
Charles Frazier's Cold Mountain is the most impressive and enthralling first novel I have read in a long time. It is a magnetic story, ambitious in scope, with richly developed characters and beautiful evocations of landscape. Though set in an earlier time, it is contemporary in the profoundest sense, with resonance of A Farewell to Arms.

Reader Reviews

mandi

awsome
This book is great! I am reading it for English class and it is the first book so far that I really like! The plot it great kinda confusing but if you keep reading it all falls into place. The book is great I can't wait to see the movie!

Brooke

Cold Mountain
WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This book was just incredible! It is so detailed and has a great storyline!

Puget Sound Reader

Pause, Reflect and Exhale
I did not want this book to end. It has been deeply satisfying, with moments of awe. The author has an ability to paint you into the scene, and the experience, with ease. Never forced, never a wasted word. Every image is instantly clear in my minds ...   Read More

John

Wounderful piece of American literature.

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