Winter's Bone

Winter's Bone

A Novel

Book - 2006
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The last time Ree saw her father he didn't bring food or money but promised he'd be back soon with a paper sack of cash and a truckload of delights. Since he left, she's had to look after her mother - sedated and losing her looks - and her two younger brothers. Ree hopes the boys won't turn out like the others in the Ozark mountains - hard and mean before they've learnt to shave.

One cold winter's day, Ree discovers that her father has put up their house as bail and that it'll be sold from under them if he doesn't show up for his trial. Ree knows she needs to find her father to save her family but in a culture riven with secrecy and paranoia her questions are unwelcome and the answers painful.

As Ree faces violence and a strange kind of loyalty she learns about courage and resilience.

This is a startingly vivid portrait of tough people and the unforgiving landscape they inhabit.

Publisher: London : Sceptre, 2006.
ISBN: 9780340897973
Branch Call Number: FIC WOOD
Characteristics: 193 p. ; 21 cm.


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Jul 26, 2017

Ree is a true heroine who faces unbelievable adversity for the ones she loves. The life she lives in the Ozarks almost seems to be a part of history, from another time, with ancestral roots running as deep as the trees.

Dec 20, 2014

A bleak portrayal of poverty and violence in the meth-ridden culture of the rural Ozarks. Woodrell gives us a strong character in this protagonist, a teenage girl maneuvering through the hazards of her dysfunctional family and the outlaw atmosphere that threatens the only life she knows.

Oct 18, 2014

Having lived in the Ozarks for many years, as a child and as an adult, I did not particularly like this book. As another reader commented, it does tend to stereotype Ozark dwellers and intermarriers. Not true! The book also gives the impression that people in the O0zarks are either illiterate or semiliterate which is also not true. Poor they may be, but they are not ignorant, although they are slow to accept modern ways of thinking and are definitely not very cosmopolitan. Also the writer seemed to focus on the use of amphetamines and that also is a stereotype. Meth labs cropped up in different areas and were in full bloom during the eighties and into the nineties. (One reason I moved away!) Incidents such as the physical beating of Ree was a very uncommon thing. Overall, I would not recommend this book to anyone, unless they were absolutely desperate for reading material!

Kysmom6 Oct 04, 2014

Very interesting book. I don't typically read material that has such a dark and depressing tone but this was necessary for a class. I was absolutely wowed. My greatest disappointment with this book was the end but I appreciate a bit more closure when it comes to the ending of a story. Overall I would recommend this as a great read to just about anyone!

Jul 09, 2013

I saw the movie version a few years back starring the talented though still-yet-unknown Jennifer Lawrence, and that appreciation eventually led me back to Daniel Woodrell's original work.
Winter's Bone, the novel, works well because it primarily focuses on the inner life and desperate psychological struggle of the protagonist, Ree Dolly. The plot moves things along but is ultimately secondary to how all of it affects Ree. The same is true for the austere southern Missouri Ozark setting. I also thought that Woodrell expertly balanced the hurried tension of Ree scrambling to save her family home from a bail bond snafu and the frustrating, unhurried pace of rural life.

May 27, 2013

It's very dark and Gothic and most of the time is spent on characterization and building atmosphere, but it is an excellent book. It is not for children, needless to say, even though the main character is basically a child in the eyes of the law. It talks of impoverishment and a code all their own. It's very different than what I usually read and heavy on the purple prose to understand the wintry Ozarkian landscape and the equally cold attitudes of both neighbours and family. Everything is talked about in such a muted way, but the content is just so vivid and described so articulately that Woodrell deserves all the acclaim he received and more. It's a short enough read, so I would recommend it to pretty much anyone above a certain age.

Mar 17, 2013

Woodrell is an authentic author whose writing is really tremendous. This is a story about a harsh life met with loyalty and courage. Highly recommended!

Oct 25, 2012

I loved this book when it came out - the characters were so vivid. About to reread it.

Mar 14, 2012

I had to read this book for a class, and I really didn't like it. The only good things about this book were Ree, Gail, and Ree's 2 younger brothers. The rest of the book was really creepy and weird. It also seems to stereotype Missouri, so now everyone probably thinks everyone that lives in Missouri does meth and marries their cousins, which is totally not true! The ending was a surpprise, but also a cliff-hanger. Overall, I would not recommend this book.

Feb 15, 2012

This should be mandatory reading for 16-year old highschool students - most of them have it so much better than the main character in this book and don't appreciate it. Ree inspires to stop whining and "deal with it".

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May 27, 2013

Coarse Language: Lots of cussing throughout.

May 27, 2013

Sexual Content: There are direct and indirect mentions of premarital sexuality and brief mentions of incest.

May 27, 2013

Violence: A lot of violence throughout, including towards women.

May 27, 2013

Other: Alcohol, tobacco smoking, crystal meth, and marijuana are all used by various characters throughout the book.

May 27, 2013

Frightening or Intense Scenes: There are a number of vivid intense scenes, some quite horrific. (I cannot describe them on account that they would potentially spoil the novel.)

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Mar 14, 2012

KKPGIRL thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over


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rushun May 31, 2013

Found title in a Patterson book. A short read. Story in poverty mountains of Arkansas about a young girl facing eviction from her house with two very young siblings who need to find her dead father to save her house. Hard life. Good ending.


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