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Five Skies (2007)

Tekijä: Ron Carlson

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
3572572,086 (3.91)21
Fiction. Literature. HTML:Beloved story writer Ron Carlson's first novel in thirty years, Five Skies is the story of three men gathered high in the Rocky Mountains for a construction project that is to last the summer. Having participated in a spectacular betrayal in Los Angeles, the giant, silent Arthur Key drifts into work as a carpenter in southern Idaho. Here he is hired, along with the shiftless and charming Ronnie Panelli, to build a stunt ramp beside a cavernous void. The two will be led by Darwin Gallegos, the foreman of the local ranch who is filled with a primeval rage at God, at man, at life.

As they endeavor upon this simple, grand project, the three reveal themselves in cautiously resonant, profound ways. And in a voice of striking intimacy and grace, Carlson's novel reveals itself as a story of biblical, almost spiritual force. A bellwether return from one of our greatest craftsmen, Five Skies is sure to be one of the most praised and cherished novels of the year.

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Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 25) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
Three men with differing backgrounds and ages work together on a construction project in the middle of the Idaho desert. They live in a tent on the job site and occasionally visit a small town about 20 miles away. Each is harboring an emotional wound from a traumatic experience. They form close bonds over the course of the project. They are able to forget their troubles for a while, as they lose themselves in their work, feeling pleasure in doing the job well.

This book is beautifully written. The prose is sparse. The plot is low key. The characters are deeply developed. The tone is melancholy. The scenery of southern Idaho is pained in words. It is a stark landscape, filled with sagebrush and rabbits. A river lies at the bottom of a gorge. There are many conversations related to engineering and building construction. The novel is structured such that dialogue is used to gradually reveal their character traits and backstories.

The narrative is propelled by the sense of wanting to know what is initially unknown. What are they trying to avoid by getting away from the world for a while? What is this project intended to accomplish? What will the men do after the project is finished?

Eventually, all is revealed, and it leads up to an intense conclusion. The dramatic ending is surprising after the laid-back pace in the early parts. I very much enjoyed this book of inner turmoil in the midst of natural beauty.
( )
  Castlelass | Oct 30, 2022 |
“The river came through this park winding in a perfect S and the sand and willows and twenty gigantic cottonwoods were half in the shade. The air rode down the river fragrant with water and willows.”

Three men get together for a construction project in Idaho. That is the gist. I love reading stories set in the modern West and Carlson seems to be the kind of author I enjoy but this was an uneven narrative and I am not sure I needed a description of building a ramp in painstaking detail. I still found plenty to admire. I like these three, flawed, rugged, characters and Carlson can certainly describe the great outdoors with a sense of beauty and serenity. The author is known as a short story writer and I wonder if I would appreciate him more, in that format. I will definitely give him another try. ( )
  msf59 | Jan 16, 2021 |
Review: Five Skies by Ron Carlson.

They claim this is a man’s book and I have to agree but I would say it’s a man’s way of life. The book was slow reading in different areas and no real excitement or surprises until the very end. Some readers (women) after reading this book might say that a man’s life is boring but for them it’s a man’s world. The adventure of three men that the author created was manly enough, the dialogue was fair but needing a little up-lift and the setting was nothing to write home about but I kept reading hoping for some humor to jump out somewhere. Another review stated, “The language is pared down. The landscape is rendered, but there is next to no interior monologue, no fluff”, and I have to agree.

The story is about three men working construction on a patch of degenerated country land building a large ramp that extends high and ends at an opening above a rustic river gorge. My vision was a high enough ramp for a motorcycle to make a grand leap to the other side of the gorge. So the entire story was based on building this ramp, the procedures, and the calculations, down to the very last step of tarring the ramp. While this was going on day after day they were inhabited by rabbits and coyotes at their camp site on the property. One reason the ramp was being built was because the owner wanted to alienate the town that butted up against his land with some kind of ugly sight. Feud is another concept weaved into this story to establish another feature how some men behave. Turning the pages of this book was all hammers and nails to the very last spike driven into the wood. I will say they cooked up enough good recipes every day that made my mouth savor as I read…..
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  Juan-banjo | May 31, 2016 |
This was the most boring book I have read in a long time. The story was bland and the dialog stilted. The author alternated the names he used for characters which was annoying. And to make awful things worse, I listened to the audio version, which was read by the author, and his monotone voice and painfully slow reading were even more mundane than his writing! ( )
  Jen.ODriscoll.Lemon | Jan 23, 2016 |
This was the most boring book I have read in a long time. The story was bland and the dialog stilted. The author alternated the names he used for characters which was annoying. And to make awful things worse, I listened to the audio version, which was read by the author, and his monotone voice and painfully slow reading were even more mundane than his writing! ( )
  Jen.ODriscoll.Lemon | Jan 23, 2016 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 25) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
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2007 edition: Five skies / Ron Carlson (novel)
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia (1)

Fiction. Literature. HTML:Beloved story writer Ron Carlson's first novel in thirty years, Five Skies is the story of three men gathered high in the Rocky Mountains for a construction project that is to last the summer. Having participated in a spectacular betrayal in Los Angeles, the giant, silent Arthur Key drifts into work as a carpenter in southern Idaho. Here he is hired, along with the shiftless and charming Ronnie Panelli, to build a stunt ramp beside a cavernous void. The two will be led by Darwin Gallegos, the foreman of the local ranch who is filled with a primeval rage at God, at man, at life.

As they endeavor upon this simple, grand project, the three reveal themselves in cautiously resonant, profound ways. And in a voice of striking intimacy and grace, Carlson's novel reveals itself as a story of biblical, almost spiritual force. A bellwether return from one of our greatest craftsmen, Five Skies is sure to be one of the most praised and cherished novels of the year.

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