Prodigal Summer: A Novel

Front Cover
Harper Collins, Oct 16, 2001 - Fiction - 464 pages
48 Reviews

Barbara Kingsolver's fifth novel is a hymn to wildness that celebrates the prodigal spirit of human nature, and of nature itself. It weaves together three stories of human love within a larger tapestry of lives amid the mountains and farms of southern Appalachia. Over the course of one humid summer, this novel's intriguing protagonists face disparate predicaments but find connections to one another and to the flora and fauna with which they necessarily share a place.

  

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
25
4 stars
12
3 stars
8
2 stars
2
1 star
1

Kingsolver's writing is amazing. - Goodreads
The pace matches the story. - Goodreads
... very little plot. - Goodreads

Review: Prodigal Summer

User Review  - Beth - Goodreads

I liked this book, and I liked the message, but even though I agreed with her it was a little preachy. All the characters kept getting in arguments that involved long exposition about how important ... Read full review

Review: Prodigal Summer

User Review  - Jamie - Goodreads

So, this might be closer to a 4.5, but I am going to give it a 5 because I dearly loved it. I dearly love Kingsolver as well. Growing up in the mountains of Eastern KY, the mountains of WV and now ... Read full review

Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
30
Section 3
49
Section 4
51
Section 5
68
Section 6
92
Section 7
128
Section 8
146
Section 16
310
Section 17
331
Section 18
344
Section 19
361
Section 20
366
Section 21
374
Section 22
385
Section 23
392

Section 9
167
Section 10
188
Section 11
204
Section 12
221
Section 13
245
Section 14
268
Section 15
285
Section 24
400
Section 25
420
Section 26
428
Section 27
436
Section 28
441
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 186 - And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.
Page 186 - And God blessed them and said to them, 'Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it...
Page 35 - ... parents realized I was turning out more like Rocky than Grace Kelly, they finally heeded the call of suburbia and moved to New Jersey. I still live there. Unfortunately for my hips, though, I've never lost my penchant for Philly soft pretzels and hoagies, in spite of growing up in the "Garden State.
Page 27 - His presence filled her tiny cabin so, she felt distracted trying to cook breakfast. Slamming cupboards, looking for things in the wrong places, she wasn't used to company here. She had only a single ladderback chair, plus the old bedraggled armchair out on the porch with holes in its arms from which phoebes pulled white shreds of stuffing to line their nests.
Page 26 - Her own nakedness startled her, even; she normally slept in several layers. Awake in the early light with the wood thrushes, feeling the texture of the cool sheet against her skin, she felt as jarred and disjunct as a butterfly molted extravagantly from a duncolored larva and with no clue now where to fly.
Page 1 - But solitude is only a human presumption. Every quiet step is thunder to beetle life underfoot; every choice is a world made new for the chosen.
Page 437 - By thus becoming a successful farmer, albeit an unorthodox one, Lusa negotiates a position for herself within the Widener family, and within the recognizably Southern narrative geography of the Widener place: "one long story, the history of a family that had stayed on its land. And that story was hers now as well.
Page 135 - If the thought caused him sadness that he would never again know the comfort of human touch he sensed it was merely a tributary to the lake of grief through which an old man must swim at the end of his days.
Page 123 - The trees, the moths. The foxes, all the wild things that live up there. It's Cole's childhood up there, too. Along with yours and your sisters'.

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2001)

Barbara Kingsolver's work has been translated into more than twenty languages and has earned a devoted readership at home and abroad. In 2000 she was awarded the National Humanities Medal, our country's highest honor for service through the arts. She received the 2011 Dayton Literary Peace Prize for the body of her work, and in 2010 won Britain's Orange Prize for The Lacuna. Before she made her living as a writer, Kingsolver earned degrees in biology and worked as a scientist. She now lives with her family on a farm in southern Appalachia.

Bibliographic information