Through Jim Burden's endearing, smitten voice, we revisit the remarkable vicissitudes of immigrant life in the Nebraska heartland, with all its insistent bonds. Guiding the way are some of literature's most beguiling characters: the Russian brothers plagued by memories of a fateful sleigh ride, Antonia's desperately homesick father and self-indulgent mother, and the coy Lena Lingard. Holding the pastoral society's heart, of course, is the bewitching, free-spirited Antonia.
"A Wonderful Book"
Willa Cather's best known novel; a narrative that recounts a life lived simply in the silence of the southwestern desert.
Catch the holiday spirit with this magical collection of beloved Christmas tales. Christmas favorites from L.M. Montgomery, O. Henry, Willa Cather, Hans Christian Anderson, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Mark Twain, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Bret Harte and Anthony Trollope are lovingly recorded and presented here in one enchanting volume.
"Dark Christmas Tales"
On the harsh and wild frontier of the American West, Alexandra Bergson struggles to fulfill her father's dying wish of establishing his family on the Nebraska table lands. Through hard times and abundant, through love and loss, through joy and suffering, Alexandra challenges both her family and the land in her quiet, honest way.
The country is America; the woman is Alexandra Bergson, a fiercely independent young Swedish immigrant girl who inherits her father's farm in Nebraska. A model of emotional strength, courage, and resolve, Alexandra fights long and hard to transform her father's patch of raw, wind-blasted prairie into a highly profitable business. A gripping saga of love, murder, greed, failure, and triumph, O Pioneers! vividly portrays the hardships of prairie life.
"Cather writes like Wyeth paints."
The daughter of a Swedish minister growing up in Colorado, Thea Kronborg's musical talent sets her apart from her contemporaries. Driven by her determination to satisfy her artistic impulse, she moves to Chicago, where she falls in love with a wealthy married man. Her ability to resolve the tensions between her personal and professional lives and to communicate through her art makes her an unusual and thoroughly modern heroine.
"Not the fantatic book I had herd it was"
My Ántonia tells the stories of several immigrant families who move out to rural Nebraska to start new lives in America, with a particular focus on a Bohemian family, the Shimerdas, whose eldest daughter is named Ántonia. The book's narrator, Jim Burden, arrives in the fictional town of Black Hawk, Nebraska, on the same train as the Shimerdas, as he travels to live with his grandparents after his parents have died.
In 1697, Quebec is an island of French civilization perched on a bare gray rock amid a wilderness of trackless forests. For many of its settlers, Quebec is a place of exile, so remote that an entire winter passes without a word from home. But to 12-year-old Cécile Auclair, the rock is home, where even the formidable Governor Frontenac entertains children in his palace and beavers lie beside the lambs in a Christmas créche.
The Bergsons, a Swedish family of settlers in Nebraska, battle drought and other disasters in an effort to establish a foothold in this new land.
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.
"Coming of Age/World War I Story"
A portrait of a woman who reflects the conventions of her age even as she defies them and whose transformations embody the decline and coarsening of the American frontier.
Antonia Shimerda, a Bohemian immigrant, learns of the joys and hardships of life as she and her family realize their dream in the Nebraska farmlands. Willa Cather called Antonia "a rich mine of life, like the founders of the early races."
My Ántonia chronicles the life of Ántonia, a Bohemian immigrant woman, as seen through the eyes of Jim, the man unable to forget her. Jim, now a successful New York lawyer, recollects his upbringing on a Nebraska farm. Even after twenty years, Ántonia continues to live a romantic life in his imagination. When he returns to Nebraska, he finds Ántonia has lived a battered life and is now abandoned by the very man to whom she dedicated her life.
After the death of his parents, Jim is sent to live with his grandparents on the Nebraska plains. By chance, on the same train is a bright-eyed girl, Antonia, who will become his neighbor and lifelong friend. Her family has emigrated from Bohemia to start a new life of farming, but they soon lose their money and must work hard just to survive. Through it all, Antonia retains her natural pride and free spirit.
"An amazingly vivid novel"
O Pioneers! is a story of the immigrants who came to America to build new lives for themselves. Struggling against poverty, ignorance, drought, and storm, they came to love and understand the land, until it rewarded them with a richness exceeding all imaginings.
"Bad recording, good book"
First published in 1926, this book is Cather's sparest and most dramatic novel, a dark and oddly prescient portrait of a marriage that subverts our oldest notions about the nature of happiness and the sanctity of the hearth.
The Shimerda family come to Nebraska from Bohemia - but they find the promised land of opportunity a harsh and unforgiving reality. Young Jim Burden - the narrator of the tale - who lives with his grandparents on a homestead nearby, finds ways to be neighborly and to help the Shimerdas and in the process comes to befriend the daughter of the family, Ántonia. For Jim, Ántonia is an embodiment of the female pioneer.
"A deep river of American writing"
In this semiautobiographical portrait of a young artist, Willa Cather takes us into the heart of a woman coming to know her deepest self. Thea Kronborg, a minister’s daughter in a provincial Colorado town, has dreams and gifts that her hometown will not satisfy. With the support of a few allies who recognize her rare qualities, she follows her ambitions to the city, determined to be an opera diva. As she moves through a series of music teachers in Chicago, Thea finds that the attitudes and standards of those around her rarely match her own.
"The Song of the Lark"
At the age of 18, Lucy Gayheart heads for Chicago to study music. She is beautiful and impressionable and ardent, and these qualities attract the attention of Clement Sebastian, an aging but charismatic singer who exercises all the tragic, sinister fascination of a man who has renounced life only to turn back to seize it one last time. Out of their doomed love affair - and Lucy's fatal estrangement from her origins - Willa Cather creates a novel that is as achingly lovely as a Schubert sonata.
A study in emotional dislocation and renewal. Professor Godfrey St. Peter, a man in his 50s, has achieved what would seem to be remarkable success. When called on to move to a more comfortable home, something in him rebels.