Hard Scrabble: Observations on a Patch of Land

Hard Scrabble: Observations on a Patch of Land - John Graves

Hard Scrabble: Observations on a Patch of Land


"A kind of homemade book--imperfect like a handmade thing, a prize. It's a galloping, spontaneous book, on occasion within whooping distance of that greatest and sweetest of country books, Ivan Turgenev's A Sportsman's Notebook."--Edward Hoagland, New York Times Book Review"His subjects are trees and brush, hired help, fences, soil, armadillos and other wildlife, flood and drought, local history, sheep and goats . . . and they come to us reshaped and reenlivened by his agreeably individual (and sometimes cranky) notions."--New Yorker"If Goodbye to a River was in some sense Graves's Odyssey, this book is his [version of Hesiod's] Works and Days. It is partly a book about work, partly a book about nature, but mostly a book about belonging. In the end John Graves has learned to belong to his patch of land so thoroughly that at moments he can sense in himself a unity with medieval peasants and Sumerian farmers, working with their fields by the Tigris."--Larry McMurtry, Washington Post Book World"Hard Scrabble is hard pastoral of the kind we have learned to recognize in Wordsworth, Frost, Hemingway, and Faulkner. It celebrates life in accommodation with a piece of the 'given' creation, a recalcitrant four hundred or so acres of Texas cedar brake, old field, and creek bottom, which will require of any genuine resident all the character he can muster."--Southwest Review
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"A kind of homemade book--imperfect like a handmade thing, a prize. It's a galloping, spontaneous book, on occasion within whooping distance of that greatest and sweetest of country books, Ivan Turgenev's A Sportsman's Notebook."--Edward Hoagland, New York Times Book Review"His subjects are trees and brush, hired help, fences, soil, armadillos and other wildlife, flood and drought, local history, sheep and goats . . . and they come to us reshaped and reenlivened by his agreeably individual (and sometimes cranky) notions."--New Yorker"If Goodbye to a River was in some sense Graves's Odyssey, this book is his [version of Hesiod's] Works and Days. It is partly a book about work, partly a book about nature, but mostly a book about belonging. In the end John Graves has learned to belong to his patch of land so thoroughly that at moments he can sense in himself a unity with medieval peasants and Sumerian farmers, working with their fields by the Tigris."--Larry McMurtry, Washington Post Book World"Hard Scrabble is hard pastoral of the kind we have learned to recognize in Wordsworth, Frost, Hemingway, and Faulkner. It celebrates life in accommodation with a piece of the 'given' creation, a recalcitrant four hundred or so acres of Texas cedar brake, old field, and creek bottom, which will require of any genuine resident all the character he can muster."--Southwest Review
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