The Road Home

The Road Home

by Jim Harrison
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The Road Home by Jim Harrison

The Road Home lies in the shadows of Manifest Destiny and Wounded Knee; it is etched into the landscape of an old man's memory and into the stubborn dreams of a young man's heart. In one of Jim Harrison’s greatest works, five members of the Northridge family narrate the tangled epic of their history on the expanses of the Nebraska plains. They strive to understand their fates, to reconcile with demons of the past, to live in accordance with the land and to die with grace. As the family grapples with the mysterious forces that both pull them apart and draw them inextricably back together, they must come to term with life's greatest and hardest lessons: the deception of passion, the pain of love, the vitality of art, and the supplication to nature's generosity and fury.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780671778330
Publisher: Washington Square Press
Publication date: 10/01/1999
Pages: 464
Sales rank: 308,334
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 1.10(h) x 8.20(d)

About the Author

Jim Harrison is the author of three volumes of novellas, Legends of the Fall, The Woman Lit by Fireflies, and Julip; seven novels, Wolf, A Good Day to Die, Farmer, Warlock, Sundog, Dalva, and The Road Home; seven collections of poetry; and a collection of nonfiction, Just Before Dark. He has been awarded a National Endowment for the Arts grant and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He lives in northern Michigan and Arizona.

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Road Home 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a bit slow at time, but the richness of the interwoven story gets you invested heavily in the characters. Without realizing it, soon you can't put it down. It ends up heartbreaking and uplifting all within the same story.
Guest More than 1 year ago
One of the best books ever written. A perfect followup to Dalva (the second best book ever written).
A_reader_in_Juneau_AK More than 1 year ago
I have read several of Jim Harrison's books including his memoir Off to the Side and novels Farmer, True North, Dalva, and now The Road Home. Harrison wrote The Road Home nine years after his novel Dalva. The Road Home cannot correctly be characterized as a prequel or a sequel to Dalva, but rather a more in depth look at the Northridge family, a Nebraska ranching dynasty. The novel takes us back, always in the form of first person narrative, three generations. It may be fare to characterize Harrison's style as time mosaic, since any given paragraph may jump to several moments in time according to the free association of the narrator's memory. The story of the Northridge family, to some extent, reflects the growth of the nation in that it weds the exploitation of opportunity with the destruction of the environment and, most clearly noted in this novel, the destruction and subjugation of American Indian culture. What I found wearing about this novel was the stalwart virtue of the Northridge family. Its members are incorruptible, arrogant, and larger than life. The narrative of John Wesley Northridge II is the best because his character is the most flawed. The character of Naomi comes across as the most sympathetic. The character of Nelse, the great grandson, practically becomes irksome. He rejects the trappings of contemporary culture in favor of a nomadic life that keeps him close to nature. His virtue is numbing and flawless. He champions the plight of the American Indian and can name the genus and species of just about every plant and critter he comes across. And he responds with heroic violence when he sees a wrong committed. All of these traits are admirable, of course, it's just that Harrison bludgeons us with them. And as with other Harrison characters, you wonder who is bankrolling this wonderful existence. Reading this novel, I felt like an outsider in the world Jim Harrison has created, and an object of the author's derision. I am a European American, the result of westward expansion. I live within our civilization and am largely ignorant of what goes on in the natural world, although I live in Juneau, Alaska, a city surrounded by roadless wilderness. I perceived smugness in the Northridge family, and had the sense that my life can never live up to theirs. Having said all this, let me conclude by adding that The Road Home, as well as Harrison's other novels that deal with family histories, caused me to pause and consider my place in the world. Yes, it is good to study nature and it is good to understand the horrific damage our culture has visited on Native Americans. It is good to find things to love in life that can't be purchased. It is the germination of this awareness that makes Jim Harrison a great American novelist who will always be welcome on my bookshelf.