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Extended Audio Sample The Ploughmen: A Novel, by Kim Zupan Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Kim Zupan Narrator: Jim Meskimen Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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A young sheriff and a hardened killer form an uneasy and complicated bond in this mesmerizing first novel set on the plains of Montana.

Steeped in a lonesome Montana landscape as unyielding and raw as it is beautiful, Kim Zupan’s The Ploughmen is a new classic in the literature of the American West.

At the center of this searing fever-dream of a novel are two men—a killer awaiting trial and a troubled young deputy—sitting across from each other in the dark, talking through the bars of a county jail cell: John Gload, so brutally adept at his craft that only now, at the age of seventy-seven, has he faced the prospect of long-term incarceration, and Valentine Millimaki, low man in the Copper County Sheriff’s Department, who draws the overnight shift after Gload’s arrest. With a disintegrating marriage further collapsing under the strain of his night duty, Millimaki finds himself seeking counsel from a man whose troubled past shares something essential with his own. Their uneasy friendship takes a startling turn with a brazen act of violence that yokes together the two haunted souls by the secrets they share—and by the rugged country that keeps them.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Kim Zupan has captured the feel of Montana: he has made a fine beginning.”

    Larry McMurtry, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Lonesome Dove

  • “A terrific debut novel that evokes its western landscape with gorgeous prose, The Ploughmen is a powerful and at times painful story.”

    Michael Koryta, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Mr. Zupan produces pleasurably lush and baroque prose, especially when describing his setting’s awesome and unforgiving topography.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “Set in northern Montana, the novel presents a powerful and implacable landscape, all dry soil and fractured river breaks…The book features plenty of suspense. What it offers in addition are Zupan’s considerable skills with description and mood…A dark and imaginative debut.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Passionately arresting…Even though Zupan’s novel deals with grim topics, he plows the depths of grief and numbness with such a concentrated dedication that the prose is a character in itself. His sentences are unleashed in a furious splendor…Bleak and brilliant—the best kind of book.”

    Minneapolis Star Tribune

  • “Stunning…A remarkable novel…It’s a portrait of the West as a sometimes desolate and cold place, full of possibility, maybe, but also full of danger from every corner. It’s a modern West, caught between the romance of the frontier and the mundane, harsh realities of living in the present day United States. And it’s absolutely beautiful, from its tragic opening scene to its tough, necessary end. Zupan is an unsparing writer but also a generous, deeply compassionate one.”

    NPR

  • “The expansive, indifferent, and lonely landscapes that populate the book are as vital as the two main characters and elevate Mr. Zupan’s work from a story about an unlikely friendship to a solemn exploration of the human soul—and how it is formed by the space that surrounds it.”

    Pittsburg Post-Gazette

  • “A startlingly beautiful debut novel from a talented craftsman…Spare and emotionally devastating, this cannot be recommended highly enough.”

    Library Journal

  • “Nuanced…fascinating…What Zupan offers is a superb, retro prose style, channeling William Faulkner in long passages engorged with vocabulary, and meditations on what it means to be alive, if barely, in rural Montana circa 1980…A rich, morose meditation on death, law enforcement, and friendship.”

    Booklist

  • “Jim Meskimen gives a stellar performance in narrating this audiobook gem…Meskimen’s versatile baritone has a gravelly quality that matches the vast Montana landscapes described by the author and the story’s dark subject matter. His performance of the narrative sections is clear, with his tempo adding to the impact of each word. Each character has a unique and credible voice that is consistent throughout the performance. The discussions between Millimaki and Gload on life, death, and their attachment to the land are a splendid match of voice and text.”

    AudioFile

  • “A stunning work from the first pages to the last.”

    Claire Davis, author of Winter Range

  • “Kim Zupan’s The Ploughmen is one of the finest evocations of life in Western America in recent memory, a book that stands alongside Richard Ford’s Rock Springs, Marilynne Robinson’s Housekeeping, James Welch’s Fools Crow…Reminiscent of Cormac McCarthy at his best.”

    William Kittredge, author of Hole in the Sky

  • “Simply splendid; lyrical, surprising, authoritative, and starkly honest in its rendering of the human soul.”

    Mark Spragg, author of An Unfinished Life

  • “As good a book as I’ve read in years. Luminous…nothing short of brilliant…a first novel that leaves me impatient for the next.”

    Rick DeMarinis, author of The Year of the Zinc Penny

  • An Amazon Best Book of the Month, October 2014
  • Winner of a Barnes & Noble Discover Award
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