Home Feed
Add Review, Blurb, Quote
Neighbour Rosicky | Willa Cather
post image

Hey, #catherbuddyread buddies - I went to a bookstore to buy a present for someone else, and look what I found. It‘s at most a novella, maybe just a short story, but I couldn‘t resist.

Tanisha_A Best! 2d
batsy Nice! 2d
Graywacke Never heard of this title. Nice find! 2d
38 likes3 comments
A Lost Lady | Willa Cather
post image

Barbara Stanwyck in the 1934 film

As always, enjoyed the conversations with the #catherbuddyread - a group I feel special being a part of. I had a great deal of trouble trying to review this - somehow it‘s not easy to figure out what I want to share about it. I finally came up with something, but, apologies, requires a click.

Here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3034219977 or here https://www.librarything.com/topic/312033 (message 85)

Tanisha_A What a great review! ❤️ You know this is one of those books, which if you re-read you'll hit something new. 6d
Tanisha_A Or at least I felt so! 6d
Graywacke @Tanisha_A Thanks! I‘m not super comfortable with it because there is a lot of things going on in the book and I keep thinking of things I didn‘t address and wondering if I should have done so. I completely agree about rereading. 5d
38 likes3 comments
A Lost Lady | Willa Cather
post image

Whoa! Looks like i am posting after a long while here. I have missed Litsy so effin' much. Blame work, work, work.

Quite a character study - loved reading another one of Cather's gorgeous stories. Doesn't the title itself makes you curious? A fast paced read with plenty of quiet moments, this was a melting pot of characters and their lives (as individuals and with each other).

Got to read more Cather. ❤️

Tanisha_A @Graywacke Sorry, sorry, I couldn't participate in the buddy read. 😭 7d
JennyM I‘ve missed seeing you! Glad to see you back. 😘😘😘 7d
Tanisha_A @JennyM Love love love. Hiii! So happy to be back. 😘 7d
See All 21 Comments
LeahBergen Hello again! 👋🏻 7d
Cinfhen Hi!!! It‘s been awhile. So nice to see you back!! 7d
TrishB Hi 👋 good to see you again 😘 7d
BarbaraBB I hope you‘ll have some time off in Decided to read and Litsy 💕 7d
CarolynM Nice to see you back👋 7d
youneverarrived Good to see you 💕 7d
batsy Hello you ❤️ Great review and glad that you liked this, too! 7d
Lcsmcat We missed you! I‘ve read critics who said this was her “turning point” novel, so I hope your schedule lightens up enough for you to keep reading Cather with us. I‘m curious to see how her work progresses. 7d
Graywacke @Tanisha_A nice to see a post from you, especially this one. Hope it means work life is saner for you. Also glad you were able to read this! Yay! (Are you ready for the next one? 🙂 We‘ll start The Professor‘s House Jan 14...but no complete schedule yet) 7d
Tanisha_A @LeahBergen @Cinfhen @TrishB @BarbaraBB @CarolynM @youneverarrived @batsy @Lcsmcat @Graywacke Hi loves! I have missed you all so so so much. Honest to God, i think I feel incomplete without Litsy. #LitsyIsJoy ❤️ 6d
Tanisha_A @batsy @Lcsmcat I am loving her work so far, and yes, very curious to see what else is in store. She is really one of my favourites. ☺️ 6d
Tanisha_A @Graywacke Yess, and i am on holiday from 18th - with some traveling and reading in store. Can't wait. Also, i can't thank you enough for choosing another one of her writings. Count me in for the next one, i seriously hope that i improve as a buddy reader. 🎈💙 6d
charl08 I've never read anything by her - where should I start? 6d
Graywacke @charl08 i started with a later book, Death Comes for the Archbishop, and kept going. Our #catherbuddyread started with O Pioneers! Two good places to start, I think. 5d
Tanisha_A I agree with @Graywacke. The Great Plains trilogy would be a good place to start. Hope you enjoy them. 🙂 5d
readordierachel Welcome back! 💕 3d
52 likes21 comments
A Lost Lady | Willa Cather
post image

November was a good reading month, although I‘m hard-pressed to select a #favoriteNovemberRead. The two I‘ve been talking about the most are the tagged book from the #catherbuddyread and Moby Duck b/c of the issues it raises. #gratefulreads @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks @OriginalCyn620

OriginalCyn620 👍🏻📚😊 2w
47 likes1 comment
Lab Girl | Hope Jahren
post image

#BookReport @Cinfhen
I finished Shelter, as anticipated, and started Lab Girl, which got the most votes for my next #NFNov read. I also started Laudato Si on audio for my Ethics class. I'm almost done with Willa Cather's A Lost Lady for the #catherbuddyread. And of course I've been doing lots of seminary reading! 😊 I'm loving Lab Girl, it's such a delight. 💕 @Clwojick @rsteve388

Cinfhen What app did u use for these graphics?? So streamlined/ I love it 3w
Caterina @Cinfhen Ohh I wish this was a fancy app! It's just Audible unfortunately. 3w
Cinfhen I didn‘t realize Audible breaks it down by week/day ~ that‘s cool (edited) 3w
Clwojick 1 pt 2w
41 likes4 comments
A Lost Lady | Willa Cather
post image

A Lost Lady Part 2 : 4-9 (end of the 📖 )

She left me in a spell. Seemingly past our story climax, Cather carries it forward forcefully with the power of her words and her unexpected framings. Seen through Niel‘s eyes, Marian leaves an impression that spreads well beyond our isolated, perhaps overly judgmental, individual thoughts. As @lscmcat highlighted, she doesn‘t do one dimensional characters. Thoughts? How does she do it?

Graywacke Pictured is Lyra Wheeler-Garber-Anderson, Cather‘s nonfictional source for Marian, who had a stop in Red Cloud, NE 3w
Graywacke Two of my favorite quotes coming: 3w
See All 58 Comments
Graywacke “The voice he heard behind him was her most charming; playful, affectionate, intimate, with a thrill of pleasant excitement that warmed its slight formality and burned through the common-place words like the colour in an opal. He simply held his breath while she fluttered on: “ 3w
Graywacke Niel‘s need to know everything: “He would like to call up the shade of the young Mrs. Forrester, as the witch of Endor called up Samuel‘s, and challenge it, demand the secret of that ardour; ask her whether she had really found some ever-blooming, ever-burning, ever-piercing joy, or whether it was all fine play-acting. ... “ 3w
Graywacke And, my last opening comment: Cather left me feeling a little guilty for my premature judgements last week. She may look like a blinded woodpecker at one point (I think I got that right) but there is a lot more to Marian. I feel like oversimplified last week. 3w
Graywacke Oh, and a link: Cather and the vagaries of frontier prostitution: https://cather.unl.edu/scholarship/catherstudies/11/cs011.gutske 3w
Lcsmcat Marian is certainly a complex character. I love how Cather avoids the easy judgements. We don‘t see any of the characters as all good or all evil. Niel can be judgmental, as well as altruistic; Marian cheats, yet she‘s loyal in her own way, taking care of Captain F. through his illness and old age. 3w
CarolynM I agree @Lcsmcat The story of how Marion met Captain F put a different complexion on their relationship. Clearly there was a lot of gratitude there. It also made me look at her relationship with Ellinger differently - I felt more sympathetic to the reasons she may have had for being unfaithful and also it was clear she felt committed to Ellinger too. 3w
CarolynM I also highlighted your second quote @Graywacke And "It was what he most held against Mrs Forrester; that she was not willing to immolate herself, ... and die with the pioneer period with which she belonged." Cather is brilliant at embodying nostalgia for the great pioneering times in her central characters "He had seen the end of an era, the sunset of the pioneer. He had come upon it when already it's glory was nearly spent."? 3w
CarolynM I don't really buy that sort of nostalgia, but it can be seductive. One final thought - how much do you think Mrs F's dealings with Ivy Peters, particularly after the Captain's death, were her free choice, and how much was she manipulated/exploited by him? I wonder if he had been blackmailing her all along. 3w
Lcsmcat @CarolynM Whether he was blackmailing her or not, I don‘t think it was a free choice. She had few options open to her for survival. If cleaning her own house was a sign of destitution, no one would pay her to clean theirs. She had very limited options for keeping body and soul together. And she chose one that gave her some amount of independence. 3w
Graywacke @Lcsmcat @CarolynM I wondered about the nature of the Mr-Mrs F relationship and the compatibility/confrontation with her affair. There seemed to be more to their relationship than simply husband/wife. Some other connections and loyalties and tolerances. Anyway, a lot between them that was - you know, that world no one else sees in a relationship. Interesting to me. 3w
Graywacke @CarolynM so interesting her take in this mythical end of an era. Since she lived through it, in Red Cloud, I would venture to say she is showing what she saw and there was a real change. Maybe Captain was myth, but a change from immigrant farmers to money-go-getting land dealers and other opportunist was probably real. I think I do buy it, to a degree 3w
Graywacke @CarolynM @Lcsmcat Ivy, oye. Part of the problem is the dynamics are obscured by Niel‘s judgment. She had a need, he saw an opportunity, and she gave her body. But the full nature of the give and take seems to maybe have been more complex. As we learn, she wasn‘t just a blind woodpecker, she had ways to get things and she was much more complicated then her documenter, pore Niel... 3w
Graywacke I think the mystery of Marians relations with Mr. F and Ivy are - well, they give a lot to think about. Curious to hear more of your thoughts on those dynamics. 3w
batsy @CarolynM Not sure about the blackmailing myself, but I agree with @Lcsmcat that Mrs F situation was circumscribed and she did what she could to keep herself together and interestingly, to maintain a particular lifestyle. Cather really excels at this—Mrs F is a certain kind of person who is invested in maintaining a certain kind of lifestyle, but Cather doesn't portray her in order to pass judgment. There is also empathy. 3w
batsy I love the second quote too, and how it ends... "she had always the power of suggesting things much lovelier than herself..." that's the dreamlike feeling I get from Niel's nostalgia-tinged recollection that I think mentioned last week. Something that's there but not quite there. 3w
Graywacke @batsy i like part of the line too. 3w
Graywacke @batsy regarding her life style - just thinking it through, what do you think are her options? If she has no income (via male supporter), what does she become? Does she survive, if you like... is it a preference or a kind of life and death? 3w
batsy @Graywacke Class & a certain level of comfort that comes with that, is maybe what I'm thinking. Her options would be extremely limited; there would be the threat of poverty & greatly diminished circumstances. So yes, death of the soul for Mrs F, in a way. As I read this I kept thinking about Antonia & how would she fare in this situation... But then I realised class & background play a huge role. 3w
Graywacke @batsy Class does. But, I guess what I‘m thinking is, does Marian makes it as a normal person or worse? Ántonia was physically extra tough, and self-reliant. She‘d survive any culture except one of judgment. Whereas Marian is physically soft and very dependent. So maybe it‘s not just maintaining her own class, (edited) 3w
Graywacke (Opps, hit send by mistake) ... but also can she literally get by one a lower class level. One thing about Ivy, like Ántonia, he‘s self-reliant, and he can go down and get by. He has no real fear of poverty. 3w
CarolynM Re the Mr-Mrs F relationship and her infidelity - I don't think she married him for his money or position, I think he literally saved her and she was grateful and that led to the marriage. Given that starting point and the large age difference (and also a possibly false impression of how he treated her) I can understand why she might look for passion elsewhere. I'm not sure what it says about me, but I'd be less understanding if I thought she 👇 3w
CarolynM ☝was a gold digger (the bargain then being her body for the money/position). The phone call with Ellinger after his marriage made me believe that, at least on her part, that was a genuinely romantic relationship and not just sex. As for Ivy, she was worldly enough to be aware of what kind of man he was. I thought it was strange that she suddenly seemed to think her only means to an income was through him. Surely there were others who might have👇 3w
CarolynM ☝️leased the land. That's why I wondered about blackmail. The stuff about him becoming her lawyer was a bit suspicious too. 3w
Lcsmcat @CarolynM I think she fired the Judge as her attorney because he would have kept her in genteel poverty and dependence in order to maintain her “respectability.” (Think the Miss Bates from Emma.) And she wanted independence more than respectability. 3w
Lcsmcat @CarolynM And was there anyonebelse who could lease the land? I feel like that was part of Cather‘s showing us the change from pioneers to robber barons. The old guard didn‘t have the means, and the new powerful didn‘t have high ideals/manners/honor? 3w
Lcsmcat @batsy @graywacke I think Mrs F was facing the death of the body, as well as the soul! She was not as strong as Ántonia, mentally or physically. The alcoholism illustrates an inability to deal with difficult realities. 3w
Lcsmcat But we have to remember that we‘re only allowed to see what Niel sees. We have no access to her inner life. 3w
Lcsmcat https://www.google.com/amp/s/mirabiledictu.org/2015/12/18/willa-cathers-a-lost-l... This is an interesting blog post on the role, not so much of class, but of money. Cather is quoted as saying the book was an attempt to paint a “fine miniature on ivory” of Mrs. F. 3w
batsy @Lcsmcat Thanks for the link, going to check it out. 3w
Lcsmcat Another thought: written in 1923, can we view Cather‘s vision on the Ivey‘s of the world as seeing ahead to the crash of ‘29, caused by that type of “money at all costs and honesty and honor be damned” mentality? Not that she prophesied the crash specifically, but she was sounding a warning or making an astute observation about where that behavior leads. 3w
jewright I definitely feel like she loved Ellinger. I feel like they should have been together, but she was already married to the captain. Surely her husband had suspicions. Perhaps he only cared about keeping up the appearance of their marriage and didn‘t mind her indiscretions as long as they were quiet. Perhaps he was just naive too. Neils Hayes Ivy, but I‘m not sure she does. I don‘t think she is deceived about anything she does. It‘s all calculated. 3w
Lcsmcat @jewright I got the feeling the Captain knew and was willing to accept that as the price of her devotion. I don‘t have the quote in front of me, but at one point Niel says something like, he guessed the Captain knew her better than he thought. I‘ll have to look it up. 3w
Graywacke @CarolynM @jewright rethinking her phone call with Ellinger - which I found a memorable scene in many ways, found myself wondering how Cather created such attention drawing impressions. And wondering if Niel did the right thing in cutting the cord. I kind of felt the bastard needed to hear what he‘d done... but also - Ellinger rejects her right at the point she was about to become available, right at the point she actually needed him. big setback! 3w
Graywacke @Lcsmcat enjoyed that review you linked to. Interesting about Cather‘s change in focus. The article I linked to above describes a different change - new critical Cather pulling away from the world. Both see this book as the pivot point. 3w
Graywacke @Lcsmcat so, to get to your depression sense in Cather, it‘s possible there was something she really didn‘t like about these Harding years. Once greed and corruption become destructive on a whole society - kind of thing. Just my thinking out loud. 3w
Graywacke @batsy @CarolynM @Lcsmcat @jewright I found this a powerfully compact little book that surprised me several times. So, to just to get this out there - did everyone like it? Did it get to you? 3w
Lcsmcat @Graywacke re: the depression, while the way it‘s taught can make Black Friday seem sudden and unexpected, I think many people saw it coming. But like today, they were not able to stop it. Wolfe gives an idea of that in You Can‘t Go Home Again, where people witnessing the leveraged buying and selling described it as a fever, and knew it couldn‘t be sustained. But those who were profiting from it didn‘t/couldn‘t see. Kind of Lear-like. I‘m 👇🏻 3w
Lcsmcat not claiming Cather was a prophet, but she was a keen observer. I‘m sure many people were shaking their heads during the time between the wars wondering when the other shoe would drop. 3w
Lcsmcat And I did really like this book! Her prose is still spot on but the subject matter seems a bit more nuanced perhaps? 3w
Graywacke @Lcsmcat she certainly saw the rot - not sure she saw the house falling. Interesting about Wolfe. I‘ve never read him. 3w
batsy @Lcsmcat About the real risk of being left in genteel poverty, I like your comparison to Miss Bates in Emma. That's the sense I got of Mrs F. She reminded me of a less tragic version of Wharton's Lily Bart. The blog post you linked to—I appreciated learning that Mrs F is based on a woman Cather knew growing up. Niel's recollections are nostalgic, dreamlike, & very personal... tinged with that sense of betrayal of youth watching their idols fall. 3w
batsy @Graywacke I really liked it! Your description sums up my reaction. Like I mentioned above I'm also obsessed with the parallels I see about how Wharton characterised Lily Bart in House of Mirth. Considering the era, I'm so curious if Cather read House of Mirth & Age of Innocence... It's certainly possible that both Cather & Wharton saw what the economic boom did to people and were, as @Lcsmcat says, thinking about the (future) costs... 3w
CarolynM @Lcsmcat I'm sure you're right that some people saw the crash of '29 coming, but I doubt they would have realised how far-reaching and catastrophic it would turn out to be. @Graywacke I liked it the book, and Mrs F, a lot. Wistful is the word that best describes it, I think. 3w
Graywacke @batsy ( @lcsmcat ) - I so need to read Edith Wharton... (my main biggest reading hole is basically 1800-1950 😕) 3w
Graywacke @Lcsmcat @CarolynM @batsy @jewright @crazeedi @Tanisha_A @Caterina @Louise @Sace @Tamra @rubyslippersreads Next book? The next in the chronology is The Professor‘s House (which I recently read a negative review on that called it chopped up). Also, we skipped Alexander‘s Bridge, her 1st novel (and 20 years of short stories before that). I‘m going to suggest we keep this new Cather mentality going and read The Professor‘s House next. Interested? 3w
Graywacke January 14 for first discussion? 3w
Lcsmcat That works for me. (January and The Professor‘s House) I would like to go back and catch Alexander‘s Bridge at some point if y‘all are interested. (edited) 3w
Sace Sounds good. 3w
Louise Good plan. I‘m in. 🤓 3w
rubyslippersreads @Lcsmcat This immediately made me think of the scene in the movie “Titanic,” where we find out how “money at all costs” Cal reacts to the Crash. 3w
rubyslippersreads I‘m definitely in for reading another Cather in January. 3w
CarolynM I'm good with that plan. I'm also interested in reading Alexander's Bridge and the short stories at some stage. 3w
jewright @Graywacke I like Edith Wharton a lot. 2w
jewright @Graywacke I‘m in! I‘m enjoying reading more Cather. 2w
batsy Count me in! The plan sounds good :) 2w
42 likes1 stack add58 comments
Untitled | Unknown
post image

I'm quite proud of my #BookReport this week 😁 Despite the fact that we were traveling and visiting, I met all my reading goals (as simple as they were). Note- I think I originally planned to finish Monster Volume 5, but I hadn't realized I was on Volume 6 when I made my goals. 🙄

(I'm a little sad the #catherbuddyread is coming to an end. Glad I am participating in the #LiteraryCrew read.)

Cinfhen Woohoo 🙌🏻 great reading week 3w
Sace @Cinfhen thanks! 3w
70 likes2 comments
A Lost Lady | Willa Cather
post image

Once again Cather is a joy to read, even when the story leaves me feeling melancholy. Some interesting points to discuss fellow #CatherBuddyRead -ers.

Freespirit This sounds like a must read! 3w
CarolynM @Freespirit Have you read any of her other books? 3w
Sace Perfect review. "Melancholy" is how I ended up feeling as well. 3w
See All 7 Comments
Freespirit No @CarolynM but I will look out for them! 3w
CarolynM @Freespirit The best known, and probably the best, is 3w
BiblioLitten With all the Cather love on Litsy, I have to find a copy to read soon! 😃 3w
CarolynM @BiblioLitten You won't be sorry if you do🙂 3w
68 likes3 stack adds7 comments
A Lost Lady | Willa Cather
post image

I couldn‘t stop, so I finished this morning. I‘ll hold off on my review to avoid spoilers. #catherbuddyread I‘d forgotten how they used to put mini-catalogs in the back of paperback books. There‘re about 12 pages of this, so the ending of the novel snuck up on me. @Graywacke

Graywacke See something you‘d like to order? Anxious to see your thoughts on finishing, but I haven‘t picked it up to read the end yet. (edited) 3w
Lcsmcat @Graywacke If I could get them for 1977 prices! 3w
36 likes3 comments
Lost Lady | Willa Cather
post image

Such a pick. I'm so glad I stumbled upon the #catherbuddyread led by @Graywacke. I'm sure that much of the message and nuance was lost on me, but the writing was beautiful. Willa Cather never disappoints me.

Hoopiefoot Oooh-I love Willa Cather but have somehow never read this. Thanks for sharing! 4w
Sace @Hoopiefoot I hadn't even heard of it! 4w
74 likes2 stack adds2 comments