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One of Ours | [Willa Cather]

One of Ours

Claude Wheeler resembles the youngest son of an American fairy tale. His fortune is ready-made for him, but he refuses to settle for it. Alienated from his crass father and pious mother, all but rejected by a wife who reserves her ardor for missionary work, and dissatisfied with farming, Claude is an idealist without an ideal to cling to. It is only when his country enters the First World War that Claude finds what he has been searching for all his life.
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Publisher's Summary

Willa Cather's Pulitzer Prize winning narrative tells of the making of a young American soldier. Claude Wheeler, the sensitive, aspiring protagonist, resembles the youngest son of a peculiarly American fairy tale. His fortune is ready-made for him, but he refuses to settle for it. Alienated from his crass father and pious mother, all but rejected by a wife who reserves her ardor for missionary work, and dissatisfied with farming, Claude is an idealist without an ideal to cling to. It is only when his country enters the First World War that Claude finds what he has been searching for all his life.

In One of Ours, Willa Cather explores the destiny of a grandchild of the pioneers, a young Nebraskan whose yearnings impel him toward a frontier bloodier and more distant than the one that vanished before his birth. It is a canny and vital portrait of an American psyche at once skeptical and romantic, restless and heroic.

(P)1998 Blackstone Audio Inc.

What Members Say

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  •  
    Jay Quintana 07-02-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Coming of Age/World War I Story"

    Half the book is about Claude's coming of age in the Midwest. He becomes disappointed with life as he grows into adulthood. He has to take over the family farm and end his university studies. Not only that, but he marries someone he shouldn't have. Cather writes well, but the protagonist and his plight is far from compelling. The other half is about Claude joining the military and fighting in World War I. Perhaps it's unfair, but I couldn't help but compare this to All Quiet on the Western Front. And the latter book covers all aspects of that war -- its horror and senselessness, its costs in lives and humanity -- much, much better.

    Additionally, a lot of minor storylines are left unresolved. For example, his wife goes to China to help her ailing missionary sister and that's it. We never hear about her again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pat 04-27-15
    Pat 04-27-15
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    "Finely crafted anti-war novel"

    Willa Cather's Pulitzer Prize winning 1922 novel of a young Nebraska farm boy's experience in The Great War. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Monica Chicago, Illinois, United States 03-19-11
    Monica Chicago, Illinois, United States 03-19-11
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    "Slow and Boring....zzzz"

    I purchased this book because I really liked My Antonia, a masterpiece of Cather. I have read O'Pioneers-beautiful, but not like My Antonia. One of Ours was disappointing. Slow moving all throughout and the end was of no event.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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