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The Story of Edgar Sawtelle Born mute, speaking only in sign, Edgar Sawtelle leads an idyllic life with his parents on their farm in remote northern Wisconsin For generations, the Sawtelles have raised and trained a fictional breed of dog whose thoughtful companionship is epitomized by Almondine, Edgar s lifelong friend and ally But with the unexpected return of Claude, Edgar s paternal uncle, turmoil consumes the Sawtelles once peaceful home When Edgar s father dies suddenly, Claude insinuates himself into the life of the farm and into Edgar s mother s affections Grief stricken and bewildered, Edgar tries to prove Claude played a role in his father s death, but his plan backfires spectacularly Forced to flee into the vast wilderness lying beyond the farm, Edgar comes of age in the wild, fighting for his survival and that of the three yearling dogs who follow him But his need to face his father s murderer and his devotion to the Sawtelle dogs turn Edgar ever homeward David Wroblewski is a master storyteller, and his breathtaking scenes the elemental north woods, the sweep of seasons, an iconic American barn, a fateful vision rendered in the falling rain create a riveting family saga, a brilliant exploration of the limits of language, and a compulsively readable modern classic


10 thoughts on “The Story of Edgar Sawtelle

  1. Red Red says:

    I m torn I m torn between giving this book 5 stars and 1 star The book is very thought provoking It is well written, and very evocative of the time early 70 s and the place far northern Wisconsin This was a book that I had a hard time putting down, and indeed I stayed up too late several nights, and played hooky on chores an entire afternoon, so I could read


  2. Will Byrnes Will Byrnes says:

    This is an extraordinary novel, Hamlet in the North Woods of Wisconsin Wroblewski was very fond of the stories of Shakespeare as a kid, if not necessarily the actual text, and it is clear that he carried with him the knowledge of tragedy Edgar opens with a mysterious transaction in the Orient in which a man seeks out a purveyor of a particularly effective pois


  3. William Ramsay William Ramsay says:

    This is a very well written book with serious flaws I cannot fathom what the point of the book is or why it s getting such good press The author doesn t seem to understand the relationship between story and the flow of ideas He skips over important details such as why anyone does anything they do in the story What does all that dog training have to do with the


  4. Yulia Yulia says:

    Anyone can base their work on a Shakespearean tragedy Go ahead try it The goal is to make it speak for itself This novel has no voice It s stunningly inauthentic in its modesty and brazen in its ambition This poorly conceived and executed book may appeal to a shocking number of readers, but it doesn t make it worth one of the dogs that inspired it.I feel like Jo


  5. Ruth Ruth says:

    I guess I have to be the spoilsport here I did not like this book.Let me just say straight out that anthropomorphism does not sit well with me I almost jumped ship on page 30, where the story hopped over to the POV of Almondine the dog and had her thinking and reasoning like a human being I love dogs I ve had quite a few in my lifetime I speak dog well, we relate


  6. Cindy Cindy says:

    I was SOOOO disappointed in this book The only reason I gave it even one star is because of his depiction of the lovely dogs in the story I felt like the author went overboard trying to wax poetic to the point where I didn t know what he was talking about, even being unsure of what the progression of events was The entire plot builds to a very important resolution


  7. Lisa Lisa says:

    Stayed up half the night finishing it and I really can t be objective about this book I said earlier how I was enjoying it purely as a reader and not a critic, but it goes deeper than that It s like Wroblewski had some kind of infrared Jungian checklist and somehow managed to find out all my childhood fantasies benevolent and wise dog companion nursemaid Check Supe


  8. Timothy Juhl Timothy Juhl says:

    I waged a personal debate for this five star rating, arguing what exactly makes a book great With every question, I returned to the story itself has the ability to lift a book aboveaverage efforts The Story of Edgar Sawtelle is just that, a great story A modern retelling of Hamlet Certainly, the author availed himself of the plot to frame his tale of a mute boy and


  9. Melody Melody says:

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here I had such high hopes for this book Just read these descriptive passages This will be his earliest memory.Red light, morning light High ceiling canted overhead Lazy click of toenails on wood Between the honey colored slats of the crib a whiskery muzzle slides forward until its cheeks pull


  10. Paul Paul says:

    I know many people adore this book and it had lots of hype some years ago via Oprah, but I m afraid I didn t love it It reads easily enough and flows well The story is straight forward as well Edgar Sawtelle is born mute and is the only child of Edgar and Trudy Sawtelle They own a farm and breed dogs, very special dogs known as Sawtelle dogs , which they then sell It


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