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Simon the Fiddler: A Novel Paperback – 6 April 2021

4.3 out of 5 stars 1,201 ratings

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Review

“The reader is treated to a kind of alchemy on the page when character, setting and song converge at all the right notes, generating an authentic humanity that is worth remembering and celebrating.”  -- New York Times

“Jiles’ sparse but lyrical writing is a joy to read. . . . A beautifully written book and a worthy follow-up to News of the World.” -- Associated Press

“Imbued with the dust, grit, and grime of Galveston at the close of the Civil War, Simon the Fiddler immerses readers in the challenges of Reconstruction. Jiles brings her singular voice to the young couple's travails, her written word as lyrical and musical as Simon's bow raking over his strings. Loyal Jiles readers and fans of Anthony Doerr's All the Light We Cannot See and Elizabeth Strout's Olive Kitteridge will adore the author's latest masterpiece."  -- Booklist (starred review)

“Luminescent prose. . . . Jiles’ timeworn territory provides a cozy escape. -- Los Angeles Times

“Endearing . . . And when the final battle royal arrives in San Antonio, it’s just the rousing ballad we want to hear.” -- Washington Post

“Jiles’s limber tale satisfies with welcome splashes of comedy and romance.”  -- Publishers Weekly

“Vividly evocative and steeped in American folkways: more great work from a master storyteller.”  -- Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“In Simon the Fiddler we once again accompany a cast of intriguing characters on a suspenseful Texas-based quest just after the Civil War. . . . A crackling-good adventure tale.” -- Minneapolis Star Tribune

"[Jiles's] description of Simon and Doris traveling on separate journeys across the Texas landscape is superb, causing us to feel the elation and sense of possibility that rises in the hearts of man, woman and beast in setting out on the road.” -- Wall Street Journal

“Beautifully told with lyrical descriptions, the novel illuminates the everyday struggles of the era.” -- Christian Science Monitor

“Jiles makes Texas in the 1800s hot and palpable for her readers, edgy and lawless, but the story also sings with melody.”  -- Book Trib

About the Author

Paulette Jiles is a novelist, poet, and memoirist. She is the author of Cousins, a memoir, and the novels Enemy Women, Stormy Weather, The Color of Lightning, Lighthouse Island, and News of the World, which was a finalist for the 2016 National Book Award. She lives on a ranch near San Antonio, Texas.

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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ William Morrow Paperbacks (6 April 2021)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 368 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0062966758
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0062966759
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 268 g
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 13.49 x 2.11 x 20.32 cm
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ United Kingdom
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.3 out of 5 stars 1,201 ratings

Customer reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5
1,201 global ratings
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Top reviews from other countries

Grandad bob
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice easy read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 3 November 2020
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Morgan
3.0 out of 5 stars Not her best
Reviewed in Australia on 12 February 2021
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Hughcr
5.0 out of 5 stars Civil War era comes to life
Reviewed in Australia on 18 November 2020
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5.0 out of 5 stars Civil War era comes to life
Reviewed in Australia on 18 November 2020
This is an unusual story which has been carefully researched by Paulette Jiles to bring the American Civil War era back to life with detailed representations of characters, culture, life and death. Very similar to Cold Mountain, we follow the trials and triumphs of young Simon who is almost anti heroic but certainly very authentically rendered. The best fiction, as Conrad said, puts you there on the spot or in the moment as we now say. This novel ranks with Jiles other excellent historical works: a totally engaging read.
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M Clark
3.0 out of 5 stars An interesting perspective on this period of history
Reviewed in Germany on 14 March 2021
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Loza63
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Historical Read
Reviewed in Australia on 30 July 2020
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