The Orchardist

The Orchardist

Downloadable Audiobook - 2012
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Baker & Taylor
At the turn of the 20th century in a rural stretch of the Pacific Northwest, a gentle solitary orchardist, Talmadge, tends to apples and apricots. Then two feral, pregnant girls and armed gunmen set Talmadge on an irrevocable course not only to save and protect but to reconcile the ghosts of his own troubled past.

Findaway World Llc
Set in the untamed American West at the turn of the twentieth century, this is a highly original and haunting debut novel about a makeshift family whose dramatic lives are shaped by violence, love, and an indelible connection to the land.

Publisher: New York, NY : Harper, 2012
ISBN: 9781470827816
Characteristics: 1 online resource :,digital.
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc

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Jan 19, 2014

No rating here. This was not a pleasant read for me as I found the construction so awkward it seemed impossible to struggle through. I fail to see what others found beautiful in the writing. Just midway, I quit.

Nov 15, 2013

I also loved this beautifully written and narrated book. This one and Defending Jacob are two of my 2013 favourites.

Nov 04, 2013

This is a slow read but patient readers will be rewarded with a lovely story. The audio production of this book is very well narrated. This is one of my favourites of the year.

Jun 13, 2013

The ending really spoiled it for me - such a clichéd middleclass dream.

Cdnbookworm Apr 04, 2013

I loved this book. It is set in the early part of the twentieth century, in rural Washington state. A man named William Talmadge lives at the orchard that he, his mother and his sister came to when he was a child. His mother died and his sister disappeared, and he has made a lonely existence for himself. His only real contacts are a local healer named Caroline Middey, a few years older than him, and a group of native men who stop at the orchard on their horse trading trips, one of whom, Clee, Talmadge becomes especially close to.
One day, when he is selling his fruit in town, a couple of young girls, heavily pregnant and apparently vagrant, steal some of his apples. Later, the same girls show up at his orchard, and his compassion for them moves him to help them. When the man they are fleeing follows, a tragedy ensues, and leads to years of changed lives as Talmadge feels the need to protect all the victims.
This is a story told in a slow, languid fashion, gradually unfolding before the reader. It is rich in description and details and uses wonderful language to evoke the time and circumstances of all the characters. Because I was listening to the audiobook, I had to see out the physical book later to share some of these wonderful passages. The reader, Mark Bramhall, does an amazing job of storytelling using slow speaking, pauses, and other means to bring the story to vibrant life.

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