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🍔  💀  📸  😭  🕳️  🤠  🎬  🥔 posts about Charles Frazier

The Majesty of Cold Mountain

Okay, the NY Times writer Ruth Graham recently tweeted this, and it’s so wonderful that I’m going to copy part of it word for word — the tweet is a photograph of the following letter to the editor of the New York Times Book Review section (not online):


Way back in 1997, when Charles Frazier’s “Cold Mountain” was released, I was given a copy as a present. When I flipped it over, I was struck by a blurb that seemed excessive, bordering on parody. One Rick Bass said of the novel that it “is so magnificent — in every conceivable aspect, and others perviously unimagined — that it has occurred to me that the shadow of this book, and the joy I received in reading it, will fall over every other book I ever read.” It felt so hyperbolic that it put me off trusting blurbs on dust jackets forever.

So imagine my surprise when I opened the Feb. 4 By the Book feature to see Rick Bass answer the question “What books are on your night stand?” And he replied, “‘Cold Mountain (‘re-re-re-read).”” He has restored my faith in the humble, oft-dismissed blurb in one fell swoop. It was that important to him! Lesson learned.

Christopher Vyce
Cambridge, Mass.

As Ruth put it: “Pure and total delight! A perfect letter!” Here’s Bass’s By the Book interview, by the way. I haven’t read Cold Mountain, but I’m not sure if this makes me want to or not. I’d almost rather leave it as this legendary.

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