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Publisher's Summary

National Book Award, Fiction, 1997
One of the most acclaimed novels in recent memory, Charles Frazier's Cold Mountain is a masterpiece that is at once an enthralling adventure, a stirring love story, and a luminous evocation of a vanished America in all its savagery, solitude, and splendor. Sorely wounded and fatally disillusioned in the fighting at Petersburg, Inman, a Confederate soldier, decides to walk back to his home in the Blue Ridge Mountains and to Ada, the woman he loved three years before. His trek across the disintegrating South brings him into intimate and sometimes lethal converse with slaves and marauders, bounty hunters and witches, both helpful and malign. At the same time, Ada is trying to revive her father's derelict farm and learn to survive in a world where the old certainties have been swept away. As it interweaves their stories, Cold Mountain asserts itself as an authentic American Odyssey: hugely powerful, majestically lovely, and keenly moving.
Winner of the 1997 National Book Award.
©1997 Charles Frazier (P)1998 Random House, Inc., Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc.
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Critic Reviews

"Charles Frazier delivers a soulful reading of his novel....His writing reveals the fluidity of a storyteller, and the audiobook becomes a natural extension of his skill." (AudioFile)
"Charles Frazier has taken on a daunting task, and has done extraordinarily well by it....A Whitmanesque foray into America; into its hugeness, its freshness, its scope and its soul. Such a memorable book." (The New York Times Book Review)
"A rare and extraordinary book....Heart-stopping....Spellbinding." (San Francisco Chronicle)
"Novelists are never in short supply. Natural-born storytellers come along only rarely. Charles Frazier joins the ranks of that elite cadre on the first page of his astonishing debut." (Newsweek)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By M. Dunn on 02-09-04

Cold Mountain (Unabridged)

It has been at least two years since I listened to this book, but I am still moved by my memories of it. To be honest, as a fast moving Yankee, I found the narration by Charles Frasier to be almost painful in its slow moving pace. However, after giving it some time, I realized that there was no better reader for this novel. Mr. Frasier is a Southerner, and his rendition puts the reader into the genuine feel of the time and emotion of the novel. I wept, rejoiced, and was swept away by the story. I have actually delayed my viewing of the film based on the novel b/c I feel it can only dissappoint. As it has several Oscar nominatons, I probably should get over this feeling, but it IS a novel that will remain in your heart and memory.

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49 of 53 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Dan MacDougald III on 02-13-04

One of the great works of literature

It has been 6 years or so since I read this book, shortly after it was 1st published. Never having been a fan of James Joyce's "Ulysess", at the time I thought it might be the best novel of the 20th century. Now after hearing its author read it I?m even more convinced that it is one of the great works of literature. Poetic in the manner of the romantic poets, such as Wordsworth, who I love. The language is inexpressibly beautiful. There are no weak parts. The observations on human nature and the human condition are timeless, and strikingly put. The metaphors are often southern or related to farm or outdoor life, and for this reason they may limit the book?s appeal. For myself, being both southern and an outdoor type, it is a book I shall want to read or listen to again and again. I have seen the movie, which recently came out. The movie was excellent. Very well made, well acted, well cast, well done in every detail. But the movie cannot bear comparison to the book because the strength of the book is in the poetic power of its language rather than in the story or plot line, even rather than in its characterizations. How could you make a movie to convey the poetic power of ?Tintern Abbey?? You cannot. The same with Cold Mountain. You can tell the story, tell it well, but miss all the power and glory of the book. Like poetry, it is meant to be read again and again, and is meant to be read aloud. Charles Frazier's voice and pace are exactly right. The reading could not be any better.

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34 of 38 people found this review helpful

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