Hannah Coulter by Wendell Berry
A Novel

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"Ignorant boys, killing each other," is just about all Nathan Coulter would tell his wife, friends, and family about the Battle of Okinawa in the spring of 1945. Life carried on for the community of Port William, Kentucky, as some boys returned from the war and the lives of others were mourned. In her seventies, Nathan's wife, Hannah, has time now to tell of the years since the war. In Wendell Berry's unforgettable prose, we learn of the Coulter's children, of the Feltners and Branches, and how survivors "live right on."

About Wendell Berry

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Wendell Berry is the author of more than fifty books of poetry, fiction, and essays. He was recently awarded the National Humanities Medal, the Cleanth Brooks Medal for Lifetime Achievement by the Fellowship of Southern Writers, and the Louis Bromfield Society Award. For more than forty years he has lived and farmed with his wife, Tanya, in Kentucky.
Published October 10, 2005 by Counterpoint. 210 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, History, Religion & Spirituality. Fiction

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Her story takes in the better part of the late 20th century and amounts to a kind of elegy for the starkly beautiful country life that Hannah had always taken for granted but came to love all the more as it faded into history, victim of economic and social change.

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City Book Review

Hannah Coulter is a tribute to the gradually disappearing life of the farming community, what Hannah calls “the membership.” The strength of the book lies not in the uneventful plot, but in its ability to capture that lost sense of community, the sense of place, and feeling of belonging that only...

Jul 05 2012 | Read Full Review of Hannah Coulter: A Novel

California Literary Review

It is within these relations and in their right ordering that he finds his basic place of residence, or truly comes to rest (3).” The Port William membership, even in their most trying hour, always knew a spiritual peace, they always knew “home.” Hannah tells us of salvation and forgiveness.

Apr 22 2007 | Read Full Review of Hannah Coulter: A Novel


Hannah Coulter Wendell Berry (Shoemaker & Hoard · hardcover · $25) A skinny new installment in Berry's Port William series, a twice-widowed rural lady provides an elegant and moving account of her life and love affairs, weaving in stories about the adult lives of her children as well.

Dec 02 2004 | Read Full Review of Hannah Coulter: A Novel


I was filled with life, with my life and Virgil’s life, with the life of our baby, and with lives that might, in time, come to me.

Nov 21 2008 | Read Full Review of Hannah Coulter: A Novel

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