Read In the Distance Online Free - A young Swedish boy finds himself in penniless and alone in California. He travels East in search of his brother, moving on foot against the great push to the West. Driven back over and over again on his journey through vast expanses, Håkan meets naturalists, criminals, religious fanatics, Indians, and lawmen, and his exploits turn him into a legend. Díaz defies the conventions of historical fiction and genre (travel narratives, the bildungsroman, nature writing, the Western), offering a probing look at the stereotypes that populate our past and a portrait of radical foreignness.
At first, it was a contest, but in time the beasts understood that, with an embrace and the slightest push, they had to lie down on their side and stay until Håkan got up. He did this each time he thought he spied someone on the circular horizon. Had Håkan and his animals ever been spotted, the distant travelers would have taken the vanishing silhouettes for a mirage. But there were no such travelers—the moving shadows he saw almost every day in the distance were illusions. With the double intention of getting away from the trail and the cold, he had traveled south for days.
Hernán Díaz is the author of Borges, Between History and Eternity (Bloomsbury 2012), managing editor of RHM, and associate director of the Hispanic Institute at Columbia University. He lives in New York.
|Title||:||In the Distance|
|Number of Pages||:||240 pages|
June 13, 2017
This is one of the best books of the year. It's like Cormac McCarthy, except good. Beautiful and suspenseful and alive, with some of the best landscape writing ever ("Nothing interrupted the mineral silence of the desert. In its complete stillness, the world seemed solid, as if made of one single...
January 09, 2018
I resisted everything about this novel in the beginning. I honestly thought it was impossible to believe in. I wrote highly critical marginalia as I read--normally I don't write any marginalia. And then something happened. I gave up, maybe, trying to make the book conform to my expectation. This...
December 10, 2017
There are two things I really love about this book - the opportunity to see humanity through the eyes of a nearly feral man of immense tenderness, strength and conscience, and the wonder of Diaz's writing. This is a debut novel that must have spent many years in gestation. I think that the title...
October 07, 2017
In the Distance, to be released in October 2017, is an oddly resonant novel that follows an immigrant whose journey across America plays manifest destiny in reverse. It is also a meditation on the urges to connect and survive at their most elemental.
Hakan's journey through American shadows and st...
December 15, 2017
A refreshing approach to western fiction. Diaz, whose prose is one of the many shining aspects of this novel, sets his story of Hakan in the decades before the Civil War. Although there is plenty of violence, Hakan's tale is not centered around gun fights and cattle ranching that often populate n...
December 28, 2017
Literary western of young Scandinavian boy from 1840s to 1879 s and beyond. Who lives a solitary and outlaw life, but not of his own choosing.
December 22, 2017
This is the story of a Swedish immigrant, Hawk, who after separating from his brothers ends up in California instead of New York. It is from this point that we go on a journey with Hawk as he tries to go East to NY to find his brother. What he encounters is an adventure, not like the many adventu...
January 12, 2018
An imaginative recreation of the frontier Western very much in the vein of Homer with Hakan as Odysseus. It rolls gently along from episode to episode in language that is often perfectly suited to the situation. I am stunned this did not make the Tournament of Books shortlist but hopeful other pr...
December 29, 2017
"Nothing left behind in the wilderness could ever be retrieved. Every encounter was final. Nobody came back from beyond the horizon. It was impossible to return to anything or anyone. Whatever was out of sight was forever lost."
This novel is exciting and kept on surprising me the whole way throu...
November 22, 2017
Porter Square Book’s Josh Cook has been spending our money all year, and it seems he’s going to keep doing so until the final bell rings in 2017. He recommended this book on Twitter recently, and it arrived at Writer’s Bone HQ soon after. Damn if that man doesn’t have good taste when it comes to...