Close Range: Wyoming Stories

Close Range: Wyoming Stories

Annie Proulx William Matthews / Jun 01, 2020

Close Range Wyoming Stories Annie Proulx s masterful language and fierce love of Wyoming are evident in this collection of stories about loneliness quick violence and wrong kinds of love In The Mud Below a rodeo rider s obses

  • Title: Close Range: Wyoming Stories
  • Author: Annie Proulx William Matthews
  • ISBN: 9780684852218
  • Page: 352
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Annie Proulx s masterful language and fierce love of Wyoming are evident in this collection of stories about loneliness, quick violence, and wrong kinds of love In The Mud Below, a rodeo rider s obsession marks the deepening fissures between his family life and self imposed isolation In The Half Skinned Steer, an elderly fool drives west to the ranch he grew up on foAnnie Proulx s masterful language and fierce love of Wyoming are evident in this collection of stories about loneliness, quick violence, and wrong kinds of love In The Mud Below, a rodeo rider s obsession marks the deepening fissures between his family life and self imposed isolation In The Half Skinned Steer, an elderly fool drives west to the ranch he grew up on for his brother s funeral, and dies a mile from home In Brokeback Mountain, the difficult affair between two cowboys survives everything but the world s violent intolerance These are stories of desperation, hard times, and unlikely elation, set in a landscape both brutal and magnificent Enlivened by folk tales, flights of fancy, and details of ranch and rural work, they juxtapose Wyoming s traditional character and attitudes confrontation of tough problems, prejudice, persistence in the face of difficulty with the benign values of the new west Stories in Close Range have appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, Harper s, and GQ They have been selected for the O Henry Stories 1998 and The Best American Short Stories of the Century and have won the National Magazine Award for Fiction This is work by an author writing at the peak of her craft.

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    About "Annie Proulx William Matthews"

      • Annie Proulx William Matthews

        Also published as E Annie ProulxEdna Annie Proulx is an American journalist and author Her second novel, The Shipping News 1993 , won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Award for fiction in 1994 Her short story Brokeback Mountain was adapted as an Academy Award, BAFTA and Golden Globe Award winning major motion picture released in 2005 Brokeback Mountain received massive critical acclaim and went on to be nominated for a leading eight Academy Awards, winning three of them However, the movie did not win Best Picture, a situation with which Proulx made public her disappointment She won the PEN Faulkner Award for Fiction for her first novel, Postcards She has written most of her stories and books simply as Annie Proulx, but has also used the names E Annie Proulx and E.A Proulx.


    1. "It was her voice that drew you in she could make you smell the smoke from an unlit fire."That refers to a character in one of the stories, but is just as applicable to Proulx herself.This is a collection of short stories of Wyoming ranchers, including Brokeback Mountain. It's a harsh environment and a harsh life: men and women alike have to be tough. "Wyos are touchers, hot blooded and quick, and physically yearning. Maybe it's because they spend so much time handling livestock".There are few s [...]

    2. I appreciated this almost as well as the third in her collection of “Wyoming Stories”,Fine Just the Way It Is . There is a lot of variety among the eleven stories, but it has cohesion from the Wyoming setting and common struggles of people there to achieve their dreams, whether it’s ranching or rodeo bull riding. They keep you on your toes, as some stories end with a bang and others with a whimper, some stay coast downward in gritty reality and others break into the fantasy of a ghost stor [...]

    3. Once again, Annie Proulx proves she's got bigger balls than most of the male writers out there. Whether they're roping, ranching, or riding the rodeo, the characters in these tales are all tough, hard-living people who do what needs to be done and don't spend a lot of time whining about it.Some of their exploits made my mouth drop open:Their endurance of pain was legendary. When a section of narrow mountain trail broke away under Marion's horse, the horse falling with him onto rocks below, the a [...]

    4. Tell you what, them queer cowboys like to broke my heart. Annie Proulx, I wish I knew how to quit you.Your strange mix of roughed up realism and supernatural does something to my insides. It’s too much for ordinary sentence structure. Pours out all over the confines of punctuation, seeping into my subconscious until I’m drunk and reeling reading just a sentence then a few paragraphs and soon the whole story to anyone who’ll listen. And still I want more.

    5. The stark beauty of wide open spaces and the love of outdoor life bonded many of the characters to the land in Annie Proulx's first book of her Wyoming trilogy. But other characters left the hardships, isolation, and loneliness of the rural Wyoming towns, never to return. Some worked tough, physical, low-paying jobs in the harsh Wyoming environment and used alcohol to cope. Wealthy people bought failing ranches to use as dude ranches for weekend getaways.Close Range: Wyoming Stories is composed [...]

    6. A truly wonderful book, that I don't mind telling you made me cry like a baby."Nobody leaves Wyoming unless they have to," Annie Proulx. I'm pleased I waited until I had to leave Wyoming to read this book, despite it stirring powerful feelings of homesickness. I had encountered 1-2 Proulx stories in the New Yorker before now, I had loved the film version of Brokeback Mountain, and of course, I lived in Laramie for a decade where Proulx is something of a quiet celebrity.The passage quoted below, [...]

    7. Before Brokeback Mountain gets taken entirely out of context, take a look at Annie Proulx's Close Range: Wyoming Stories, the collection in which the story is featured. If you've seen the movie but have yet to read the story, I suggest you begin here. If you've already read the story by itself, come back to this collection entire. While Diana Ossana (one of the movie's produces & screenwriters) came across it in the New Yorker and felt inspired to write a screenplay, the story itself does no [...]

    8. I absolutely love E. Annie Proulx. She does that thing with words that makes me go all dissociated from the world around me and live inside the world she creates. I am almost always disturbed by her stories but I can't stop reading them. In fact, her writing is so good that when I saw "Brokeback Mountain" (which I saw *before* I read her short fic on which it was based), I didn't think it was a great story until I read her actual story. There is ONE line in her piece that makes the story GREAT w [...]

    9. Uneven, yet generally interesting collection of eleven stories. Brokeback Mountain is the one with a movie adaptation and you can see why. It's one of the best stories of the bunch - taut, well-written, emotionally complex. At her best, you could reasonably compare Proulx to Flannery O'Connor - masterly writers of the grotesque and lonesome.

    10. I’m more inclined to recommend individual stories out of E. Annie Proulx’s Close Range as opposed to the whole book. Every story is set in Wyoming (as is noted by the book’s subtitle). This makes for an interesting dynamic as the reader already has an idea of what Wyoming is like and a setting description given in one story can bleed over into the others. The most famous story is now “Brokeback Mountain” because nothing promotes a book like the movie. (For the record, “Brokeback Moun [...]

    11. I love E. Annie Proulx. I honestly think that Myers guy must just have some problems he's got to sort out. I didn't read his book, but the examples he gave in that article of how awful her prose is only reminded me how much I enjoy her stuff, and made me want to go back and read some Proulx again. And I really don't think I'm especially pretentious, or cowed by snooty literary reviewers, whom I barely read. In fact I barely read at all these days, I have such a short attention span, and to me th [...]

    12. Proulx is so good she can make me like short stories. So good she can make her words almost poetic in their beauty about Wyoming - a place where the inhabitants need to be tougher than their environment. It is a bleak hardscrabble world with only the grimmest sort of humour.As other reviewers have mentioned, Brokeback Mountain is the outstanding tale - a love story of surprising tenderness. & I find Job History oddly flat - I'm sure it was deliberate & I have missed some subtle nuances.A [...]

    13. "La realtà non è mai un granché utile da queste parti" (Anonimo allevatore di bestiame)Con queste laconiche parole poste ad epigrafe si apre questa raccolta di racconti di Annie Proulx. E trovo che non ve ne siano di più azzeccate per cominciare a parlarne.Invaghitami della copertina di questo libro (che ,ohimè, nella mia edizione, non è codesta, ma questa: shop.bcdeditore/images/P/88 . Che purtroppo ho trovato in versione micro , ma può essere riassunta come solitario e sperso cavallo ,a [...]

    14. Just reread this, after I kept looking up, seeing it on the shelf, and thinking, "Man, I need to reread that." There isn't a wasted word in this book. The stories are lean, visceral, and operatic. Her characters and plots surprise in the way that Flannery O'Connor's do, by spontaneous manifestations of grace and evil. The collection begins and ends with two masterpieces: "The Half-Skinned Steer"--a tale of fate that uses an Icelandic legend--and "Brokeback Mountain," a love story that rings with [...]

    15. If you already know why Annie Proulx rox ur fuckin face off, then I don't know why you're reading a review instead of the book itself. It's Annie Fuckin Proulx. Read it, you bastard.Proulx gets away with all the shit that no one else could. A grab bag of voices, all unlikely, that switch mid-sentence; stories that end long after the first narrative arc dead-ended and long before the second gets off the ground; nonsensical lines that don't mean squat no matter how you squint but sure sound purdy. [...]

    16. The conventional wisdom in short stories, I feel, is that they encompass short periods of time and examine the profound significance of small events. The stories in Close Range, however, seem to take the opposite approach - lifetimes are squeezed into ten or twenty pages, the distilled essence of memories are arranged like objects on a table that, taken together, capture the undercurrent of entire lives. In this way they read like novels that have been boiled down, their steam piped through an a [...]

    17. Excellent. I usually react a bit badly to the faux-naif voice, which she slips in and out of. But eventually the overwrought language began to seem just exuberant. And the tragedies of the stories were more celebratory than painful: these characters push almost joyfully toward their doom. (Christ, I loved "The Blood Bay," the little yarn that stops long before the characters get whatever it is they have coming.) The leaping language that stops every once in a while to use their voice -- "Pair A [...]

    18. This is a set of modern folktales. A lot of the tales are sort of frightening. Proulx has a bitter, tasty, dark humor. Most of the characters are lonely and miserable.Proulx is a writer like McCarthy who manages to fit in a great deal of mechanical detail that somehow makes the story more gripping and immediate, instead of causing it to lag. The difference between Proulx and McCarthy (as fierce, modern writers of westerns) is that McCarthy can write convincingly about the punishing violence of t [...]

    19. "Only earth and sky matter. Only the endlessly repeated flood of morning light. You begin to see that God does not owe us much beyond that." (99)Annie Proulx creates some very convincing characters and stories. Her descriptions and sentences often make me reread and analyze them, how amazing her metaphors and deep her imagery. She is an extremely talented writer.All of these stories are steeped in Wyoming culture, life and lore. The collection starts out very strong, and ends even stronger, alth [...]

    20. This is such a beautifully written book. The prose is so well crafted and polished until it shines. Annie Proulx’s subtle mixture of the character’s voice and local dialect and slang with her own elegiac descriptions is a great example of free indirect style. She is amazing at describing landscapes and summing up people in a few sentences and she’s good at the subtlety of smell (all these cattle ranchers pong). My favourite stories were Brokeback Mountain – but you kind of imagine the st [...]

    21. Should actually be subtitled "Why Not to Live in Wyoming." Seriously, this is one of the most depressing collections of short stories I've ever encountered. Which is not to say they're not good, just that I'd kind of like to challenge Proulx to write a bit of light comedy or something."Brokeback Mountain" is the best, and I actually find the story much more evocative and powerful than the film. (Not that Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger making out is anything to sneeze at, mind.) Still, I'm glad [...]

    22. This was a really amazing collection of short stories. I had several favorites throughout the book, and I was genuinely surprised that the length of the story didn't really matter to me. My favorite story, Job History, was only 10 pages. 'The Bunchgrass Edge of the World' and 'Pair a Spurs' were other favorites. I think that Proulx is an excellent writer with a pretty much limitless imagination. Among the other things that surprised me was the variety in the stories. They didn't read like more o [...]

    23. Great collection of stories. "Brokeback Mountain" is probably the most famous one, for obvious reasons, but all the others are equally good. I'm amazed at Annie Proulx's ability to convey the male perspective, especially in such particular (and masculine) circumstances as rodeo or ranching. Her prose is quite harsh and unvarnished, and full of dry humour, just like Wyoming itself and its people, but at the same time it's beautiful in its bluntness, even poetic. I found these stories irresistible [...]

    24. These stories capture the hard edge of the rural West. This is the land and its natural brutality crushing and pounding into human emotions. Indeed the land hits from close range.

    25. Really lovely, really kind of subtly tremendous with both its people and its place. It’s just the kind of thing I want to read. It’s how to be in love with a place that will eat you alive.Other cultures have camped here a while and disappeared. Only earth and sky matter. Only the endlessly repeated flood of morning light. You begin to see that God does not owe us much beyond that. — “People In Hell Just Want a Drink of Water”(In my quest to read the books my favorite authors have read, [...]

    26. A book like this causes its reader to thank God, unironically and humbly, for allowing her to come across it.A few lucky accidents brought Close Range into my hands. First, we caught the last half of a very edited-for-tv Brokeback Mountain, flipping channels after a long, hot mid-Atlantic day. When I got back to Los Angeles, I mentioned to my sister that I wanted to read Brokeback Mountain, the story. She had to return some books anyway, so the next evening the book was in my hands, as if it had [...]

    27. Not to get like I just ate a bag full of madeleines, but to square the memory of a thing with the broader narrative that thing played in your life is an impossible difficulty -- inevitably the knowledge of the cliff to come imprints itself on your recollection of the road leading to it. I’ve been drinking. The point is, I really quite liked this book, but my second Proulx (Accordion Crimes, as it happens) I found at once so comically awful and peculiarly reminiscent of this that I now struggle [...]

    28. Close Range is Annie Proulx's anthology of 11 ranch/cowboy themed short stories, including Brokeback Mountain. I have to say, that there were a lot of good stories in here, not just the last one. I was suprised by the book in a few ways, not least being that I enjoyed every one of them, more than I thought I would. But I was mostly suprised by the dirty gritty realness of the scenes and the writing. I suppose I was expecting a sort of idyllic happy set of cowboy stories (I'm not sure why), but t [...]

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