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Crossing to Safety (Modern Library) (Modern Library Classics)

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No, not the one with Chevy Chase and a stiff relation on the car roof, the one that is a place of real literary wonder. The premise of Crossing to Safety seems simple: Two young couples meet in 1937 as lowest-rung members of the University of Wisconsin faculty at Madison. As with A Gentleman in Moscow and The Heart's Invisible Furies, the inescapable popularity of this book on Goodreads was the white flash of a rabbit's tail that first caught my eye.

Sidney is also a teacher, and independently wealthy; his wife is a blunt and ambitious string-puller whose family owns a Kennedy Compound-like piece of land in the Vermont hills. And like Larry, I've realized the strains that an environment of conformed thought places upon the creative mind, the lack of knowledge about the field, and the necessity of fellowships like Stegner's.

They fall into friendship and, for the rest of their lives, through ups and downs, remain deeply bonded.

I assumed, based on the endless 5-star ratings out there for this book, that it was going to be a slam dunk for me. And so, when someone suggested my reading group do his last novel, Crossing to safety, I jumped at the chance. Larry and Sally have been summoned, some 8 years after their last visit, to the Langs’ summer compound in Vermont, “the place where during the best times of our lives friendship had its home and happiness its headquarters”.In chapters that alternate between their present older age (60s) and their younger years, we learn about their romances and their struggles.

Sid wants to be a poet but Charity forbids his writing poetry in favour of growing a successful career at the university. I spent time in an iron lung with my dearest friend by my side assuring me that life was worth living even though I wished it was over. Sally has a smile I would accept as my last view of earth, but it has a certain distance about it, it is under control, you can see her head going on working behind it.Had it not been for the inclusion of some plot points I try to avoid, it might have been one of mine. The thread keeping it together is much different from that of family, which always seems to be there no matter what, even if it’s a rather snarled thread. Sospecho que lo que tanto hace enfadar a los hedonistas cuando piensan en los entusiastas del trabajo es que, sin drogas ni orgías, las personas que alcanzan sus metas nos lo pasamos mejor. This is my first book by this author and I was driven to read it by its wonderful title (my next book of his will be Angle of Repose for the same reason) and its enormous popularity.

Wallace Stegner, who offers this scene near the end of his 1987 novel Crossing to Safety, has Larry, his narrator, address Hallie. I honour and respect their cultural heritage, customs and beliefs, and respect and support their ongoing care of this country. Scholars and professors coming and going, loud discussions long into the night, all presided over by the formidable Aunt Emily, Charity’s mother, and later by Charity herself. For me it was too close to reality having witnessed a very similar relationship within my own family, another Charity type who was just an abusive and self-centred bully as far as I’m concerned. But I remember even better the hour afterward in our basement, hot buttered rum and Sally’s cinnamon rolls still warm from the oven.My dreams are affected, my relationships are affected, my perception of self is affected, and my writing style and speaking style change – all because of the fumes from this book seepage. En lugar seguro” es una reflexión sobre la escritura y el arte, una exaltación de la cultura y la naturaleza, un precioso canto a la amistad, al poder de la voluntad, al trabajo. Aun así, con mucho esfuerzo y trabajo consiguió cierto éxito tanto en su labor editorial como en su oficio de escritor. I don’t want to end on heaviness, so let’s get to the unifying theme, or idea, of the novel – friendship.

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