Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Pulitzer Prize–winning author Annie Proulx brings the immigrant experience to life in this stunning novel that traces the ownership of a simple green accordion.
E. Annie Proulx’s Accordion Crimes is a masterpiece of storytelling that spans a century and a continent. Proulx brings the immigrant experience in America to life through the eyes of the descendants of Mexicans, Poles, Africans, Irish-Scots, Franco-Canadians and many others, all linked by their successive ownership of a simple green accordion. The music they make is their last link with the past—voice for their fantasies, sorrows and exuberance. Proulx’s prodigious knowledge, unforgettable characters and radiant language make Accordion Crimes a stunning novel, exhilarating in its scope and originality.
This wasn’t his regular day. “Somebody with him!” Everybody tensed up and the men on deck shaded their eyes and strained to see the second person. A second person meant news of trouble. It was the daughter-in-law. She crouched in the bow, staring at the rig, trying to pick Buddy out. Her eyes were not good. He recognized her before they were in hailing distance. Octave was bailing with a flattened coffee can, his eyes hidden behind blue-tinted glasses, his old cowboy hat hiding his dark face in
to their lairs of rags and torn paper. Someone found such a nest and in it were tiny shreds of paper money. And the worst jobs. A young man, a boy, just off the boat, healthy and strong, eager to be a success in America, was sent to shovel powdered lead for his first job and got sick and sicker, wasted away and died coughing blood. “In that boardinghouse the windows were nailed shut, another terrible house was close beside. There was a big room, the landlord divided it in half, put up a second
direction with your good little old traveling house, with all these people traveling out to California and New York and Florida. Hello, Sonny,” he said to Ivar. “I bet you like to cut up some, don’t you? Well, I’m bad to cut up myself.” “What park system is that,” said Nils. “Haven’t heard a thing about it here.” “Well, the parks ain’t built yet, but they will be after Eisenhower’s road system gits finished. It come to me after prayer. The traveling houses are going good. I got a franchise,
Lace, it’s a special on Frank Capra movies. They said he used to play the squeezebox, showed a clip of him doing it. Jimmy Stewart, Joan Crawford, they all played. Hollywood’s favorite instrument. How about Myron Floren? I got some Myron Floren. He used to play with Lawrence Welk. How about Frankie Yankovic? ‘Roll out the barrel…’ How about Whoopee John Wilfahrt? That New Ulm stuff? There’s one of them old seventy-eights of that woman accordion, Violet, Viola Turpeinin? Finnish woman. Boy, could
Was it some fragrance borne on the wind from the tropics, or the held breath of summer released by the untimely snowmelt? It persisted three days and then disappeared as a cold air mass seeped down from the Arctic and new snow fell, rinsing the air of all scent, covering the decaying leaves and raw earth, the single leaf of the grass-pink, sprawling woodbine like a dark violet wire among the rocks, the increasing white weight matting ebony spleenwort, pulling down the plumes of faded goldenrod.