""Some people's lives are affected by what happens to their
person or their property, but for others fate is what happens to
their feelings and their thoughts--that and nothing more."" In this
haunting 1935 novel, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of My
antonia and Death Comes for the Archbishop performs a series of
crystalline variations on the themes that preoccupy her greatest
fiction: the impermanence of innocence, the opposition between
prairie and city, provincial American values and world culture, and
the grandeur, elation, and heartache that await a gifted young
woman who leaves her small Nebraska town to pursue a life in
At the age of eighteen, Lucy Gayheart heads for Chicago to study
music. She is beautiful and impressionable and ardent, and these
qualities attract the attention of Clement Sebastian, an aging but
charismatic singer who exercises all the tragic, sinister
fascination of a man who has renounced life only to turn back to
seize it one last time. Out of their doomed love affair--and Lucy's
fatal estrangement from her origins--Willa Cather creates a novel
that is as achingly lovely as a Schubert sonata.
BONUS: The edition includes an excerpt from "The Selected Letters
of Willa Cather."
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