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Stoner William Stoner is born at the end of the nineteenth century into a dirt poor Missouri farming family Sent to the state university to study agronomy he instead falls in love with English literature and embraces a scholar’s life so different from the hardscrabble existence he has known And yet as the years pass Stoner encounters a succession of disappointments marriage into a “proper” family estranges him from his parents; his career is stymied; his wife and daughter turn coldly away from him; a transforming experience of new love ends under threat of scandal Driven ever deeper within himself Stoner rediscovers the stoic silence of his forebears and confronts an essential solitudeJohn Williams’s luminous and deeply moving novel is a work of uiet perfection William Stoner emerges from it not only as an archetypal American but as an unlikely existential hero standing like a figure in a painting by Edward Hopper in stark relief against an unforgiving world


About the Author: John Williams

Librarian Note There is than one author in the GoodReads database with this nameJohn Edward Williams PhD University of Missouri 1954; MA University of Denver 1950; BA U of D 1949 enlisted in the USAAF early in 1942 spending two and a half years as a sergeant in India and Burma His first novel Nothing But the Night was published in 1948 and his first volume of poems Th



10 thoughts on “Stoner

  1. says:

    In his extreme youth Stoner had thought of love as an absolute state of being to which if one were lucky one might find access; in his maturity he had decided it was the heaven of a false religion toward which one ought to gaze with an amused disbelief a gently familiar contempt and an embarrassed nostalgia Now in his middle age he began to know that it was neither a state of grace nor an illusion; he saw it as a human act of becoming a condition t


  2. says:

    I read Stoner after I saw that almost all my friends on GR had read it It’s an impressive work which I finished months ago but hard a hard time figuring out what to say about it with thousands of reviews already out there Stoner is the life story of an unremarkable man and the consensus seems to be “he did his best” He came from a Missouri farm family and a poor background but manages to become an English professor at the university One theme is the


  3. says:

    Spoiler alert read at your own perilUPDATE December 2010I just submitted this to Better Book Titles I hope they accept itOriginal Review October 2009This is the most straight forward linear narrative type of novel I've read in the past year So at first I was not impressed But I soon realized that the novel is impressive precisely because it is able to be so damn linear the writing style so damn plain and the characters so damn dull and yet and yet it manages to


  4. says:

    After 63 pages “Stunned by Stoner This is agonisingly wonderful”At the end “Finished Him and me Exuisite but exhausted”Then I immediately started rereading something I have only previously done with children’s picture books It is without uestion my joint favourite book ever The other utterly different ones are Titus GroanGormenghast which I reviewed HERE and the Heaven and Hell trio which I reviewed HERE But it’s hard to explain its mesmerising power in a w


  5. says:

    For the hardworking men and women living in the open windswept farm country of the American Midwest during the late 19th and early 20th century day to day existence was freuently harsh an occasionally downright hostile a stark demanding life chiseling character as can be seen above in artist Grant Wood’s American Gothic If you take a good look at this painting and then envision a son an only child working the fields alongside his father you will have a clear image of the st


  6. says:

    THIS WAS MY BEST BOOK OF 2016 It was a hard decision; it was a choice between this and The Vegetarian by Hang Kang But I had to think which book taught be the most and which book helped me the most I enjoyed them both immensely I loved them but this one set me on my path in life; thus I will always be grateful for John Williams and his Stoner He opened the book; and as he did so it became not his own He let his fingers rifle through the pages and felt a tingling as if those pages


  7. says:

    Those who can do Those who can't teachWhat to do when everything goes wrong? Work marriage parenthood eventually health? Plenty of benevolent advices and platitudes will whizz around your ears to help you to bounce back Remember it is all in your mind Happiness is the result of your approach to life not of what happens to you Revolt anger complaining or denial won’t change anything Focus on what is instead of on what should be Accept accept accept Take one step at time keep moving keep w


  8. says:

    I was going to start out this review of Stoner by feigning comic incredulity that the former conductor of the Boston Pops wrote a novel about potheads but that is far far too obvious and unsatisfying even for the likes of me Instead I am going to confess that I read only half of it and thereby my ignorance has been properly disclaimed but that this aborted reading filled me with such unmitigated contempt for the author that I plan on mounting every soapbox if soapboxes haven't been technologicall


  9. says:

    John Williams's Stoner blew me away I've never read anything like it and some passages left me moved to the point of exhaustion When I finished I put down the book well the Nook picked it up again and re read highlighted pages Stoner gave me strength; if you believe that the right books find you at the right time as sometimes I believe this book found me at the right time Stoner outlines the life of a farm kid who at his dad's recommendation attends college for agricultural studies but switches to liter


  10. says:

    a uiet sadness for the common plight was never far beneath any moment of his livingThis novel damn near broke my heart Come to think of it it did break my heart I’ve been picking up the pieces and trying to put them back together for the past eleven days since finishing it I don’t know what else to say that hasn’t already been said about this exceptional piece of writing We are William Stoner Isn’t there a piece of him in every single one of us? We go about our lives with the best intentions Looking


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