America Re-Imagined, in Retrospect: Fifty Notable American Novels about the “West”: 43-44.

ACADEME BLOG

Smiley, Jane.  The All-True Travels and Adventures of Liddie Newton.  New York: Knopf, 1998.

Much of Jane Smiley’s growing reputation has derived from her penetrating depictions of contemporary life in the rural Midwest.  But she has also written several well-received historical novels, including The All-True Travels and Adventures of Liddie Newton.  Set on the American central plains in the decade before the Civil War, the novel approaches the issues that convulsed the nation though the experiences of very ordinary characters.

Although the title character of this novel moves only from central Illinois to Kansas, this movement represents a very profound and almost inconceivable transformation of her existence.  An unusually tall and rather plain-looking young woman with very limited material assets and even more limited prospects, Liddie is rescued from her unpromising future by Thomas Newton.  A New England abolitionist, he meets her while he is passing through Illinois…

View original post 789 more words

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: