Thursday, October 4, 2012

Book Review: THE BARTENDER'S TALE by IVAN DOIG

Title: THE BARTENDER'S TALE
Author: IVAN DOIG
Category: Contemporary/Western
Pub. Date: 08/21/2012
Publisher: Riverhead Hardcover
Fomat: Paperback
Pages: 387
ISBN#: 1594487359

Synopsis: 
From a great American storyteller, a one-of-a-kind father and his precocious son, rocked by a time of change.

Tom Harry has a streak of frost in his black pompadour and a venerable bar called The Medicine Lodge, the chief watering hole and last refuge of the town of Gros Ventre, in northern Montana. Tom also has a son named Rusty, an “accident between the sheets” whose mother deserted them both years ago.The pair make an odd kind of family, with the bar their true home, but they manage just fine.

Until the summer of 1960, that is, when Rusty  turns twelve. Change arrives with gale force, in the person of Proxy, a taxi dancer Tom knew back when, and her beatnik daughter, Francine. Is Francine, as Proxy claims, the unsuspected legacy of her and Tom’s past? Without a doubt she is an unsettling gust of the future, upending every certainty in Rusty’s life and generating a mist of passion and pretense that seems to obscure everyone’s vision but his own. As Rusty struggles to decipher the oddities of adult behavior and the mysteries build toward a reckoning, Ivan Doig wonderfully captures how the world becomes bigger and the past becomes more complex in the last moments of childhood.

My Review:
This book was not really my kind of book but did not realize until I was a little into it. I did read it because I said that I would. But to be honest due to foul language and it not really being for me, I was not into it.

This being said, I will let you know that this is my opinion. I have went and checked some other sources and others really enjoy this author and book. So with that I am only going to say please check this book for yourself.

So due to the above I am giving this book a Breath of Life Rating of:

Three Clock Rating..

Disclosure: I received this book in exchange for my review. The opinions are mine. And your opinion may differ. 
_____________________________


About the Author:  
Ivan Doig was born in White Sulphur Springs, Montana to a family of homesteaders and ranch hands. After the death of his mother Berneta, on his sixth birthday, he was raised by his father Charles "Charlie" Doig and his grandmother Elizabeth "Bessie" Ringer. After several stints on ranches, they moved to Dupuyer, Pondera County, Montana in the north to herd sheep close to the Rocky Mountain Front.

After his graduation from Valier high school, Doig attended Northwestern University, where he received a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in journalism. He later earned a Ph.D. in American history at the University of Washington, writing his dissertation about John J. McGilvra (1827-1903). He now lives with his wife Carol Doig, née Muller, a university professor of English, in Seattle, Washington.

Before Ivan Doig became a novelist, he wrote for newspapers and magazines as a free-lancer and worked for the United States Forest Service.

Much of his fiction is set in the Montana country of his youth. His major theme is family life in the past, mixing personal memory and regional history. As the western landscape and people play an important role in his fiction, he has been hailed as the new dean of western literature, a worthy successor to Wallace Stegner.

Bibliography
His works includes both fictional and non-fictional writings. They can be divided into four groups:

Early Works
News: A Consumer's Guide (1972) - a media textbook coauthored by Carol Doig
Streets We Have Come Down: Literature of the City (1975) - an anthology edited by Ivan Doig
Utopian America: Dreams and Realities (1976) - an anthology edited by Ivan Doig

Autobiographical Books
This House of Sky: Landscapes of a Western Mind (1979) - memoirs based on the author's life with his father and grandmother (nominated for National Book Award)
Heart Earth (1993) - memoirs based on his mother's letters to her brother Wally

Regional Works
Winter Brothers: A Season at the Edge of America (1980) - an essayistic dialog with James G. Swan
The Sea Runners (1982) - an adventure novel about four Swedes escaping from New Archangel, today's Sitka, Alaska

Historical Novels
English Creek (1984)
Dancing at the Rascal Fair (1987)
Ride with Me, Mariah Montana (1990)
Bucking the Sun: A Novel (1996)
Mountain Time: A Novel (1999)
Prairie Nocturne: A Novel (2003)
The Whistling Season: A Novel (2006)
The Eleventh Man: A Novel (2008)

The first three Montana novels form the so-called McCaskill trilogy, covering the first centennial of Montana's statehood from 1889 to 1989.

from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivan_Doig"

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