Thursday, May 14, 2015

Dancing at the Rascal Fair - The Friday 56 and Book Beginnings on Friday

122311
I've never been to Montana, but I feel like I've seen its wide open spaces and soaring mountains after reading Dancing at the Rascal Fair by Ivan Doig. This second book in Doig's Montana trilogy (it stands alone) made me a fan of his writing, and I've read almost all his books. Unfortunately, Mr. Doig passed away earlier this year at age 75.

Book Beginning (It starts with a newspaper story.)
Scotland and Helena
     Harbour Mishap at Greenock. Yesterday morning, while a horse and cart were conveying a thousand-weight of sugar on the quay at Albert Harbour, one of the cartwheels caught a mooring stanchion, which caused the laden conveyance and its draft animal to fall over into the water. The poor creature made desperate efforts to free itself and was successful in casting off all the harness except the collar, which, being attached to the shafts of the sunken cart, held its head under water until it was drowned. The dead animal and the cart were raised during the forenoon by the Greenock harbour diver.
-- Glawgow Caledonian, October 23, 1889

     To say the truth, it was not how I expected - stepping off toward America past a drowned horse.

The Friday 56 (from Page 56 in my trade paperback edition):
     Past the rear of his saloon and across a wide weedy yard he led us toward a two-story frame house. The house needed paint - this entire town needed that - but it sat comfortably between two fat gray cottonwood trees, like a mantel clock between pewter candlesticks.  

Genre: Montana Historical Fiction 
Length: 400 Pages (trade paperback edition)
Author Website: Ivan Doig

Synopsis:
     The central volume in Ivan Doig's acclaimed Montana trilogy, Dancing at the Rascal Fair is an authentic saga of the American experience at the turn of this century and a passionate portrayal of the immigrants who dared to try new lives in the imposing Rocky Mountains.
     Ivan Doig's supple tale of landseekers unfolds into a fateful contest of the heart between Anna Ramsay and Angus McCaskill, walled apart by their obligations as they and their stormy kith and kin vie to tame the brutal, beautiful Two Medicine country.

                 

Anyone can participate in Book Beginnings on Friday and The Friday 56.
Click HERE to connect to other Book Beginnings posts (sponsored by Rose City Reads) 
Click HERE to join other Friday 56 bloggers (sponsored by Freda's Voice)

31 comments:

Anne Bennett said...

1. I love Ivan Doig, who died earlier this year.
2. Dancing at Rascal was the first book by I read by this author and I still think about it years later. Are you reading the whole trilogy?
My Friday Quotes

Catherine @ Book Club Librarian said...

My mother was born in that town in Scotland and grew up in Glasgow. I will definitely have to check this trilogy out.

My Friday post: http://www.bookclublibrarian.com/2015/05/friday-focus-friday-56-book-beginnings_15.html

Creations by Laurel-Rain Snow said...

I have never read this author, but this one sounds really good. I recall spending time in the summers in Montana, as my parents went on road trips to visit old friends and we usually found ourselves in Montana on a big old ranch with huge breakfasts in the mornings. (I was twelve at the time, and loved the freedom of the outdoor spaces).

Thanks for sharing...and here's mine: “THE LIAR”



Sandra Nachlinger said...

I was looking through my bookshelves for something to read and pulled out this book. I read the trilogy long ago, and the stories stayed with me. It's time for a reread.

Sandra Nachlinger said...

I think you'll enjoy it. The writing is beautifully descriptive, and it's a good story.

Sandra Nachlinger said...

I think you'll love this book (and the whole series).

Amy said...

Hi Sandra,
Great post, it's definitely one of the more interesting openings I've read. I hope you enjoy it!
Have a great day,
Amy x

Sandra Nachlinger said...

Thanks for stopping by. This is one of my all-time favorite books.

Delinda said...

Oooo, I'll tell my cousins about this. My grandparents moved to Montana in 1911, just after the big fire.

Sandra Nachlinger said...

Delinda, I think they'd enjoy all the books in this series.

Breana M. said...

Nice post, this book definitely sounds interesting!

Alicia AKernelofNonsense said...

I particularly love this line: "two fat gray cottonwood trees" from the excerpt. Hope you enjoy and have a lovely weekend!

Claudia Arroyo said...

I like the figurative writing, I hope you're enjoying this one Sandra :)

Claudia @ My Soul Called Life

blackmutts said...

I love the description on 56!

Katherine P said...

I love how descriptive he is. This is a new to me author but I love his voice so I will have to look him up.

Elizabeth said...

Nice post. I love the cover of the book.

Thanks for sharing, and thanks for coming by my blog.

Elizabeth
Silver's Reviews
My Book Beginnings

LadyD Piano said...

I love the descriptive surroundings. What a great word picture. Have a good weekend!

Stormi Johnson said...

Great teases! Sounds like a good one.

Stormi
Friday memes

Nadene Reynolds said...

Like your post. Sounds interesting. Thanks for visiting my blog.

JC Jones said...

Montana is a popular location for books. I have been there but not in winter.

Sandra Nachlinger said...

The books is full of beautiful and creative description.

Sandra Nachlinger said...

I hope to visit there sometime.

Yvonne said...

Great post! I've never been to Montana but many fictional books I read are set there.

Laura Thomas said...

Such a lovely cover. I'd want it just for that. Also like that you mentioned the authors writing. Sometimes I follow an author because of how well they write, not just the plot. Found many wonderful books that way.

Sandra Nachlinger said...

Me, too, Laura. I try to only feature books on my blog that I enjoyed and that are well-written with few errors.

Ao Bibliophile said...

i loved the description of the house and the simile - a mantle clock between pewter candlesticks!

thanks for sharing and for stopping by my blog as well.

Lauren Stoolfire said...

I've never heard of this before but it's definitely caught my attention. :)

Check out my 56 (With Book Beginnings).

Jacqueline Gum said...

This sounds like a wonderful way to visit Montana!!

Sharons Book Nook! said...

This is new to me but I do hope you're enjoying it. Have a lovely weekend.

fredamans said...

I have a feeling, with the western setting, this is one my mom would really like. I'd not heard of this author, and am sorry to learn of his passing.
Happy weekend!

Katiria Rodriguez said...

I not really into reading western books but this one looks and sounds great love the description of the town! Thanks for stopping by my blog! :)