December 1, 2016

Looking Back - The Country Ahead of Us, The Country Behind

Looking Back... In an effort to transfer my book journal entries over to this blog, I'm going to attempt to post (in chronological order) an entry every Friday. I may or may not add extra commentary to what I jotted down in these journals.

The Country Ahead of Us, The Country Behind by David Guterson
Fiction - Short Stories
1996 Vintage Books (first published in 1989)
Finished on January 6, 1997
Rating: 3/5 (Fair)

Publisher's Blurb:

Like his novel, Snow Falling On Cedars, for which he received the PEN/Faulkner Award, Guterson's beautifully observed and emotionally piercing short stories are set largely in the Pacific Northwest. In these vast landscapes, hunting, fishing, and sports are the givens of men's lives. With prose that stings like the scent of gunpowder, this is a collection of power.

My Original Notes (1997):

By the author of Snow Falling on Cedars. Good, but not great. Short stories. The last was the best ("The Flower Garden"). Guterson writes beautifully. I just wasn't interested in fishing and hunting themes.

My Current Thoughts:

I wrote about Guterson's Snow Falling on Cedars here. I really enjoy Guterson's prose, but I'm not a huge fan of short stories. It would be fun to go back and reread The Flower Garden, but I have no interest in revisiting the entire collection.


  1. I have no interest in hunting and fishing themes either!

  2. I remember loving Snow Falling on Cedars. Despite the prose style, I don't think this one would appeal to me too much.

    1. Iliana, it looks like it has an average (3.34) rating on Goodreads. I probably wouldn't have read it now if I had the opportunity and could see the ratings.


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