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A River Runs Through it and Other Stories [Paperback]

Maclean
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 April 1979
From its first magnificent sentence, "In our family, there was no clear line between religion and fly fishing," to the last, "I am haunted by waters," "A River Runs Through It" is an American classic.Based on Norman Maclean's childhood experiences, the title novella has established itself as one of the most moving stories of our time; it captivates readers with vivid descriptions of life along Montana's Big Blackfoot River and its near magical blend of fly fishing with the troubling affections of the heart.The paperback edition is now available with an evocative new cover by acclaimed Montana painter Russell Chatham."A masterpiece. . . . This is more than stunning fiction: It is a lyric record of a time and a life, shining with Maclean's special gift for calling the reader's attention to arts of all kinds-- the arts that work in nature, in personality, in social intercourse, in fly- fishing."--Kenneth M. Pierce, "Village Voice" Norman Maclean (1902-90), woodsman, scholar, teacher, and storyteller, grew up in the Western Rocky Mountains of Montana and worked for many years in logging camps and for the United States Forestry Service before beginning his academic career. He retired from the University of Chicago in 1973.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 232 pages
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press; New edition edition (1 April 1979)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0226500578
  • ISBN-13: 978-0226500577
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 13.5 x 1.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 716,205 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Norman Maclean (1902-1990), woodsman, scholar, teacher, and storyteller, grew up in the Western Rocky Mountains of Montana and worked for many years in logging camps and for the United States Forestry Service before beginning his academic career. He was the William Rainey Harper Professor of English at the University of Chicago until 1973. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I am haunted my Mr. McLean 2 Dec 1998
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Having originally read A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT years before Redford's film or the recent hipness of flyfishing, I find myself still drawn to Mr. McLean's haunting and rich story of love, loss, and acceptance of the realities of life. It is not a "book about flyfishing", but rather uses fishing as framework for defining and illuminating the passage of time and the connectedness he shares with his world and those he knew and loved. One does not need to know anything of fishing to appreciate this monumental work. From the oft quoted opening lines..."In our family..." to the final paragraph, which, by the way after several readings still makes me cry deeply, I find this book to be filled with joy, pain, loss, love, and most importantly art, which never comes easily. Get beyond the fishing thing and experience the immense depth of this one man's life.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Book I Want to Keep 24 Aug 1998
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I borrowed this book from a friend and am now buying it. It is something I'll want to read again and have my children read. MacLean saves for us a time and way of life mostly vanished and translates a sense of beauty, love, and artistry in rugged settings and situations. Especially thoughtful in the way it considers how we try to help and understand those we love and the trouble we have in doing so. It was also a fine movie
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Full absorbition of the work. . . 9 Nov 1998
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
It would be suggested by me, that instead of delving into "A River Runs Through It" strait away, it would probably be a great idea to read the accompanying stories first as they paint a nice picture of the scape and what life was about. Further by doing so, you will become better aquatinted with the style of the author which is wonderful and colourful once familiar. Hence it would be to your own advantage to save the zenith of the author's career for the climax of the paper.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read. 2 July 1999
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I like the way Norman McLean handles the relationship with his brother. It is so vivid and genuine that I can almost see how things happen in front of my own eyes.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Maclean's Words Read Beautifully 23 Jan 1999
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Most people probably come to this story having seen and liked the Robert Redford movie. I had anyway. What's astonishing is how wonderfully it holds up. Maclean's words read beautifully right up until the haunting final paragraph. As poetic a writer as I can think of--except, perhaps for Louise Erdrich.
Don't listen to reviews that urge you to skip the sections on fly-fishing. I've never fished a day in my life, but to skip these sections is to miss some of the funniest parts of the story--and to miss how Norman, in trying to understand the river, is really trying to figure out his relationship with his father and brother.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good service 13 Jan 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Book was in great condition except that front cover had rip in it. Would have been nice to know before purchasing, but overall good!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A dream book 28 Sep 2013
By gollum
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
If you enjoyed the film this is a step beyond. The book is an angling classic. Written by someone who obviously gets fishing for wild fish!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating and engrossing 6 Jun 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am interested in early 20th century US rural life and this book describes events and attitudes very well.
It is not a dry textbook as the above sentence might imply.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars you don't need to like fishing !
A beautifully told tale , that really evokes the time and the place . A real joy for readers who like good the use of words that 'take you there' , but it is not over blown. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Lindy
4.0 out of 5 stars Slow, deep, and teeming with detail...
Those expecting this to be about fly-fishing may well be disappointed, for although fly-fishing is described in rich detail in A River Runs Through It (104 pages), it is not a... Read more
Published on 3 July 2009 by LittleMoon
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the funniest tragic story I have ever read.
This is one of my all-time, top five favorite books. I love the way Norman Maclean strings his words together, the way he makes writing about fly fishing and family a ballet of... Read more
Published on 5 Aug 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars Belongs in everyone's personal library
Most reviewers dwell more on the detailed information MacLean discusses about fly fishing in Montana in his early years. Read more
Published on 29 Jun 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars Definantly a must read!!!!
Another astoundingly beautiful book by Norman MacLean. I first read Young Men and Fire, then watched the movie A River Runs Through It, and finally the book by the same title. Read more
Published on 16 April 1999
2.0 out of 5 stars this book is boring and it makes me feel sleepy
I like fishing but I am not interested in this book.
Published on 31 Mar 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars Divine
I have been a fly-fisherman since I was knee-high to a grasshopper. I was never able put down my thoughts on Fly-fishing, in the way I wanted to, or the way it meant the most to... Read more
Published on 4 Feb 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars MacLean's Best Book Ever!
OK, so he only has a few. What many reviewers have left out is the extraordinary humor in the story. Read more
Published on 8 Dec 1998
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