A "New York Times" Notable BookAn "Esquire" Best Book of 2011A "New Yorker" Favorite Book of 2011A "Los Angeles Times" Favorite Book of 2011 Denis Johnson's "Train Dreams" is an epic in miniature, one of his most evocative and poignant fictions. It is the story of Robert Grainier, a day laborer in the American West at the start of the twentieth century---an ordinary man in extraordinary times. Buffeted by the loss of his family, Grainer struggles to make sense of this strange new world. As his story unfolds, we witness both his shocking personal defeats and the radical changes that transform America in his lifetime. Suffused with the history and landscapes of the American West, this novella by the National Book Award--winning author of "Tree of Smoke" captures the disappearance of a distinctly American way of life.
"A small masterpiece...Johnson is as skilled as ever at balancing menace against ecstasy, civilization against wilderness...."Train Dreams" might be the most powerful thing Johnson has ever written."---Anthony Doerr, "The New York Times Book Review""A triumph of spare writing...A gem of a story, set in rough times, in a tough terrain, and tenderly told."---Bob Minzesheimer, "USA Today""The visionary, miraculous element in Johnson's deceptively tough realism makes beautiful appearances in this book....The natural world of the American West is examined, logged, and frequently transfigured."---James Wood, "The New Yorker""A nearly perfect short novel from the most essential writer of his generation."---David Ulin, "Los Angeles Times"