The Octopus by Frank Norris

The Octopus
A Story of California
by Frank Norris

TheOctopus1

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First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

Just after passing Caraher’s saloon, on the County Road that ran south from Bonneville, and that divided the Broderson ranch from that of Los Muertos, Presley was suddenly aware of the faint and prolonged blowing of a steam whistle that he knew must come from the railroad shops near the depot at Bonneville. In starting out from the ranch house that morning, he had forgotten his watch, and was now perplexed to know whether the whistle was blowing for twelve or for one o’clock. He hoped the former. Early that morning he had decided to make a long excursion through the neighbouring country, partly on foot and partly on his bicycle, and now noon was come already, and as yet he had hardly started. As he was leaving the house after breakfast, Mrs. Derrick had asked him to go for the mail at Bonneville, and he had not been able to refuse.

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TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

When Presley reached Annixter’s ranch house, he found young Annixter himself stretched in his hammock behind the mosquito-bar on the front porch, reading “David Copperfield,” and gorging himself with dried prunes.

Annixter–after the two had exchanged greetings–complained of terrific colics all the preceding night.

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The Octopus is the current group read (through January 2) at the 19th Century Literature group. It is available in numerous formats from Project Gutenberg and in audio from LibriVox. Visit Becky’s Books for extras (historical information and related photos).

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38 comments on “The Octopus by Frank Norris

  1. Sounds like historical fiction, which I enjoy. I’m wondering what the book’s title has to do with the story.
    My Tuesday post features THE JOURNEY BACK – A Doublesight Story.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dagny says:

      Yes, it’s quite an odd title since it has nothing at all to do with the ocean critter or even the ocean. Becky’s site has a killer cover with an octopus drawing on it. It’s sort of about the disagreements between the wheat ranchers and the railroads. I think the ranchers may consider the railroads spreading out and taking over the land like a many-legged octopus. Not sure though, that’s just my thought now.

      Thanks for leaving your link. I had missed your posting on Fever Season. I love that series.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. P.D. Workman says:

    That looks like one my dad would really enjoy. Thanks for reading my teaser at http://pdworkman.com/excerpt-from-the-false-prince/

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dagny says:

      Good for your dad! It’s so different from the only other book I have read by the author which was McTeague. He can find it a Project Gutenberg or on audio at LibriVox – links are above.

      Like

  3. never heard about this one, sounds good. In case your readers are interested, here is my Teaser, another story in a train! A short very well done book:
    http://wordsandpeace.com/2015/12/15/teaser-tuesdays-dec-15-2015-the-641-to-paris/

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Kathy Martin says:

    This sounds a little old-fashioned and wordy for my tastes. I hope you are enjoying it. My teaser comes from Killing Trail by Margaret Mizushima this week. Happy reading!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dagny says:

      I hear that! It’s a bit to wordy to me at times also. Some wonderful descriptions, it’s usually the conversations that end up getting to me.

      So glad you left the link to your – looks like a series mystery and I’m hooked on those.

      Like

  5. I do love steam engines and stories about those times in California…I can almost hear the whistle blowing. Thanks for sharing…and for stopping by my blog.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m intrigued–sounds like a good source of information about the history of California.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. lemon123 says:

    I would like to read this one. I really love trains. I can imagine the First Chapter First Paragraph in my head. I’m not familiar with the author. I know this is a big classic.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dagny says:

      Trains feature in a lot of books! You may like them, but I fear the California ranchers are ambivalent about them. They love that they can now ship their grain to numerous markets, but aren’t too happy about some of the railroad’s policies.

      Like

  8. Sounds like a great read for anyone looking for historical detail in California – Happy reading and thanks for vising my blog earlier 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. proxyfish says:

    Sounds like an interesting read! I hope you enjoy it 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Diane says:

    Hmm, not sure about this one, but I hope you like it.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Yvonne says:

    Sounds interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I would have to read a bit more to decide if I would continue.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Love the title – wasn’t expecting it to be about a train, that’s for sure. Hope you are enjoying it and thanks for stopping by my blog!

    Denise @ Life With No Plot

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Louisa says:

    The cover looks of a historical nature, which is why the “terrific” meaning bad threw me a bit! Great teaser! Thanks for stopping by! Happy reading!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dagny says:

      Oh yes, his terrific colic. The book was published around 1901 or so. Odd how some words take an almost opposite meaning over the years. Of course now I hear people exclaiming something they love is “sick”. Sure didn’t mean that in my day. 🙂

      Like

  15. Sounds like something intense. Maybe not for me, but I do hope that you’re enjoying it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Eustacia Tan says:

    That definitely explains the prunes. Frank Norris sounds familiar, but it could be either because of Chuck Norris or the fact that I’m reading a book with a character called Norris in it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dagny says:

      I know – that poor guy. I’m wondering if they didn’t know about the effect of prunes back then or if it was just that man – he is very pedantic and no one can tell him anything.

      Like

    • Dagny says:

      Oops, I forgot to say – Norris sounds familiar to me also. A better known book of his is McTeague, but even that one was new to me rather recently. I suspect like you, it was just an association with the name.

      Like

  17. ljennison says:

    It’s not for me, but I hope you enjoy it. Thanks for coming by my WoW.

    Liked by 1 person

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