Read The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon by Tom Spanbauer Online


Set against the harsh reality of an unforgiving landscape and culture, The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon provides a vision of the Old West unlike anything seen before. The narrator, Shed, is one of the most memorable characters in contemporary fiction: a half-Indian bisexual boy who lives and works at the Indian Head Hotel in the tiny town of Excellent, Idaho. It's thSet against the harsh reality of an unforgiving landscape and culture, The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon provides a vision of the Old West unlike anything seen before. The narrator, Shed, is one of the most memorable characters in contemporary fiction: a half-Indian bisexual boy who lives and works at the Indian Head Hotel in the tiny town of Excellent, Idaho. It's the turn of the century, and the hotel carries on a prosperous business as the town's brothel. The eccentric characters working in the hotel provide Shed with a surrogate family, yet he finds in himself a growing need to learn the meaning of his Indian name, Duivichi-un-Dua, given to him by his mother, who was murdered when he was twelve. Setting off alone across the haunting plains, Shed goes in search of an identity among his true people, encountering a rich pageant of extraordinary characters along the way. Although he learns a great deal about the mysteries and traditions of his Indian heritage, it is not until Shed returns to Excellent and witnesses a series of brutal tragedies that he attains the wisdom that infuses this exceptional and captivating book....

Title : The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780802136633
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 368 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon Reviews

  • bruin
    2019-03-25 06:40

    everyone loves this book. well, most people. but i gotta say that the way that spanbauer dealt with race/ethnicity in this book made me feel super yucky. and i heard an interview that he did where someone asked him about his right to write from the voices of perspectives of native characters, and i was super less than pleased with his answer.which is a tragedy cuz a whole lot of this book is so beautiful, it makes me wanna cry. i have the same qualm with franchesa lia block and charles de lint. a ton of beauty cached in a whole lot of sketchiness. does anyone else know what to do with this? i mean i know we talk a lot about complication and how we need to hold it, and that we live in a world that generally doesn't want to help us create complicated containers for things, but what does one do with the goodreads rating system here???? maybe we need to petition goodreads for multiple rating systems :) like one for syntax, and one for character development, and one for politics (but maybe that has to be separated by the politics of the author and the politics of the book). and don't forget the cover! we definitely need a rating system for all the covers. don't worry, i know i'm a bit ridiculous. :P

  • Nephyr
    2019-03-22 02:07

    This is hands down my favorite book ever written. It has changed my life more than once, and most people I recommend it to end up feeling deeply about it as well. It's raw and beautiful, and sexy and scary (in an emotional way, not in a stephen king way) and dangerous and amazing.

  • Melisa Resch
    2019-04-20 01:47

    ohmygod. this book. holy fuck. incred. i could not stop reading it, just devoured it. all the themes that Spanbauer deals with; sexuality, family, gender, race, class, religion- that is the stuff that makes up our lives. and he just takes it all and shakes it up and lays it back down in a totally different order, one that makes sense and feels right. I am usually hesitant to read native american stuff written by white dudes but i'm so glad i read this one. some of the stuff made my mind feel like it was being pushed wide open and then other stuff felt so familiar and intimate that i constantly felt like i was being pulled and pushed by the narrative. it felt like a unceasing, unrelenting challenge to morality and all of the bullshit that oppresses us and there were moments where i just wanted to stand up on the #22 clark st. bus and cheer. and moments where i wanted to scream at him to stop hurting shed and ida and alma and dellwood because i couldn't take it any more. but i think it hurt alot not because it was excessive but because it was completely plausible. it was also one of the best trans stories i've read, told in a fluid natural way. and the fucking! jesus. i loved how much sex these characters had and the openness they had about sex and sexuality. i also loved how much butt sex there was and the acknowledgement of how much "straight" guys love it. fantastic.

  • Jordi Via
    2019-03-26 02:55

    Me ha dejado boquiabierto, en breve leeré más obras de Spanbauer que forma ya parte de mi estantería personal de libros a la que llamo MALDITA. Una estantería en la que entre otros está Denis Johnson y Cormac McCarthy, por citar a sólo dos de los integrantes. Como ya he dicho por aquí, la primera parte (las primeras 107 páginas) ya podría ser una novela a la que daría cinco estrellas. Sin lugar a dudas esta va a ser una de las mejores novelas que he leído en los últimos seis años.

  • Blake Fraina
    2019-04-09 06:05

    Oh, how I wanted to love this book. I truly did.Over the years, it’s been highly recommended to me by writers whose work I admire and readers whose taste I trust. It has garnered glowing reviews from the NY Times, Washington Post Book World, Publishers Weekly and New York magazine, among many other well respected publications.I almost feel badly about just how much I don’t like it. I’ll start with what’s good. The writing is carefully composed and stylish. The narrative voice is distinctive. And the protagonists are all depicted as fairly fascinating and singular individuals. Plus there’s an element of mystery that kept me mildly absorbed until the end.Unfortunately however, author Tom Spanbauer falls victim to many of the tropes of contemporary gay fiction and film. The book was published in 1991, suggesting that it was probably written in the late 1980’s, during the height of the Reagan presidency which gave rise to gay rage over the influence of the Christian right and the GOP’s steadfast refusal to acknowledge the seriousness of the AIDS crisis. I am all too familiar with the sub-genre of "transgressional" LGBT books/movies, including Greg Araki’s The Living End and James Robert Baker’s Tim and Pete, that depict angry gay men exacting revenge on conservatives, homophobes and haters of all stripes. Despite the fact that Spanbauer’s novel takes a different route, I can see the hallmarks of that same frustration on every page. Nothing impedes my enjoyment of a story more than when I clearly detect the proselytizing voice of the author. If I’m reading your novel, it’s likely I’m already gay-friendly; I don’t need a sermon. The Man Who Fell In Love With The Moon is peppered with all the stereotypical messages that one can find anywhere from Glee to Latter Days to Lady Gaga videos - your family is something you choose, racism and homophobia are bad, free love is good, etc. Nothing wrong with any of these sentiments, it’s just that Spanbauer is way too obvious about it and in short order it becomes pretty tiresome. He throws in everything (and everyone) but the kitchen sink in an effort to prove his inclusiveness. Every ethnicity, disability and gender preference is represented - a Jewish brothel owner, her lesbian lover, impoverished Native Americans, a traveling troupe of black minstrels (one of whom is a blind eunuch), an incestuous bisexual cowboy, an autistic mute, plus a handful of beleaguered beasts. And, to illustrate their acceptance of one another’s differences, just about everyone beds down with everyone else at some point or another. It all just kind of stretched the bounds of plausibility. Not to mention the bizarre suggestion that sexual energy is all powerful and healing, so the creepy remedy for someone who’s dying of gangrene is to get naked and dry hump them. Only a man could think this stuff up. Honestly. And don’t even get me started on the villains! All the usual suspects - an overfed, latently homosexual sheriff, corrupt politicians, a big businessman intent on despoiling the environment for personal gain and, of course, judgmental [and presumably, sexually repressed] Mormons. No complexity. Just a bunch of cartoonish Snively Whiplash types.All in all, I found the book to be overly simplistic, completely lacking in subtlety and downright preachy.

  • Damien
    2019-04-05 01:41

    I thought this book was hokey. The attempts at multi-racial/multi-cultural inclusion were insulting, and the sexuality reminded me of the way sleazy neo-hippies try to seduce people.

  • Leah
    2019-03-21 23:38

    Objectively this book is problematic as fuck. It includes a minstrel show, presents underage prostitution as a rocking good time, rape as not that big a deal and there's a dead Indian shaman living the body of our protaganist. Oh yeah, and it has a casual attitude towards incest. But then, our hero is a boy named Out-in-the-Shed which is also used throughout the book as euphemism for sodomy, and really, what's not to like about that? Despite not making a whole lot of sense and being just a tiny bit too entranced with the wild and wacky unusualness of its character, "The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon" is surprisingly compassionate and sweet. It believes in love, justice and the magical properties of delayed ejaculation.

  • Harper
    2019-04-18 03:37

    I'm really torn about this book. It's a beautiful, heart wrenching story that often sits close to home. The way it deals with queerness makes me really happy. It addresses hard issues and is full of interesting, well crafted characters. On the other side, it's written by a white man, and I find its portrayals of native people and women to be stereotypical in the most offensive ways possible. The main character is a queer, male, native american prostitute who is attempting to find love, himself, his "people", and the buffalo. Usually, these types of overarching stereotypes would completely turn me off to a book. This time, I find the story so compelling that I keep reading. It's mythical in scope and so personal that it touches parts of me that I'm somewhat uncomfortable with.

  • Tiffany
    2019-03-23 01:56

    This book was amazing (5 stars, Yeah!). I just finished reading it and I'm already ready to read it again. The story involves Native Americans, and Cowboys, and Whores, and Mormons, and Homos, and Drunks, and Bad Guys, and Good Guys, and Animals and More. I think Tom Spanbauer is pretty much a genius. He tells you the horrible things that are going to happen at the very beginning of the book, and then tricks you into forgetting all about it until the very end. And then, on top of everything that happens, he throws in an extra tidbit of information that just breaks your heart even more. What a great read!

  • Lori
    2019-03-30 05:52

    I love this book beyond all reason. But the other women in my book club despised it, and I can see their point of view, too. The sexual abuse of the main character is so twisted that most of them couldn't get beyond it. I didn't have children at the time and now that I do, I realize that might have been a game changer for me, too. I found myself utterly haunted by these strange, otherworldly characters who formed such a poetically bizarre family. I still don't know quite how or why it works, since this is the kind of writing that can so easily become pointedly obtuse or eagerly lend itself to parody. But when it works, to me this is the kind of writing that strikes that common chord of our humanity, creating the deepest kind of resonance. This book most definitely worked that way for me, and when it was over, I thought of it for weeks and months afterward, and eventually read it again, something I have only done with a handful of books in my life.

  • Jesus (Ego)
    2019-03-24 02:49

    Una pesadilla freudiana bien relatada, con personajes peculiares y carismáticos, mucha espiritualidad, sexualidad y decadencia. Creo que el autor se adentra magistralmente en ese entorno (que, por otra parte, es de donde él proviene) pero también en aquella época hace siglo y medio logrando trasmitir el choque de culturas, religiones y moralidades. La historia tiene altibajos que se integran perfectamente con la trama, algunas escenas grotescas y duras pero también cómicas, reflexivas y esperanzadoras. En conjunto me ha resultado interesante, diferente y libre. Sin duda tardaré mucho en olvidarlo.

  • Dina
    2019-03-24 08:06

    Sin duda este libro ha sido toda una revelación. Lo empecé sin ganas y me sorprendió a cada paso. Es tan original que da hasta vértigo porque muchas veces no sabes como interpretar las cosas que te cuenta el narrador. El narrador, por cierto, es lo mejor de toda la historia.Lo recomendaría, pero no a todo el mundo. Creo que hay que tener una mente abierta para leerlo e intentar no juzgarlo en ciertos sentidos, principalmente porque hay que darse cuenta de el tipo de sociedad y de época en la que está ambientado y tb porque en el fondo es una especie de realismo mágico en el que no puedes creerlo todo al cien por cien.

  • Raül De Tena
    2019-04-01 05:38

    El año pasado, por estas mismas fechas, cerraba Ahora es el momento después de un punto y final particularmente intenso. No es anormal que acabe un libro llorando... aunque tampoco es lo más común. Y más allá del sentimentalismo con el que recuerdo aquella lectura, se me quedaron dentro muchas otras impresiones igual de impactantes. Hoy, por estas fechas, acabo de cerrar El hombre que se enamoró de la luna y todo ha vuelto a mi mente, como cuando un olor antiguo te obliga a rescatar memorias perdidas.El orden de lectura inverso, sin embargo, me ha pasado factura. Una vez leído Ahora es el momento, en El hombre que se enamoró de la luna es inevitable ir tropezando con ciertos vicios que, se nota, Spanbauer ha ido puliendo con el paso del tiempo. Y es que el segundo libro de este autor (el primero es Lugares Remotos) peca, precisamente, de intentar elevar unos palmos no sólo la altura de los ojos de sus protagonistas, sino la del propio escritor y (pretendidamente) la del lector: la trama se ve salpicada de un misticismo algo excesivo que hace que el libro aterrice en las peligrosas aguas pantanosas del realismo mágico... Pero, sorprendentemente, y pese a este pequeño lastre, Spanbauer sale del embolado con nota. Incluso con nota de excelente (de 8.5 que el profesor decide subir porque le cae bien el alumno). Y todo gracias a su espectacular capacidad para abrir el pecho de sus personajes y dejar al descubierto sus entrañas de la forma más dulce y sutil, mientras los maneja con hilos invisibles a través de una trama que parece que va a estallar visualmente en cualquier momento. El argumento avanza suavemente por meandros silenciosos bañados por una dulce luz que encierra una intensa concepción estética en muchas escenas (encuadradas en escenarios fascinantes descritos con una capacidad sublime para la imagen, tal y como el lugar en el que quiere morir Dellwood Barker o el pic-nic con la comitiva vestida de blando). El hombre que se enamoró de la luna supura un magnetismo ineludible, de tal forma que es inevitable acabar prendado de esta historia que, precisamente, pone especial mimo sobre la figura del cuenta cuentos y la pericia de narrar. Desde el principio, el libro se sustenta en la certeza (tal y como dice Barker) de que la única forma de vivir la vida es contándosela a los demás: por eso es necesario ser un buen narrador. Y Spanbauer es un narrador más que excelente, incluso en sus primeros trabajos. La naturalidad con la que viven sus vidas Cobertizo, Alma Hatch, Dellwood Barker e Ida Richilieu, en contraposición a esa América rural omnipresente en Spanbauer, está abocada al drama (en una estructura, narrada en primera persona por el mismo Cobertizo, excesivamente parecida a la de Ahora es el momento). Y aunque el autor resuelve la trama con sucesivos zarpazos de pesimismo, el lector se encontrará, al final del camino, con el corazón encendido: Spanbauer consigue, sin aspavientos ni subrayados, que te pongas del lado de sus protagonistas. Que te pongas del lado de aquellos que (una vez más) se empeñar en ser quienes son, sin importarles las convenciones del medio que les rodea.

  • K.
    2019-04-11 08:04

    If you're sensitive, conventional, religious or just easily offended - do not read this book. Stay far away. Sex is like breathing for these people, a way of survival, which is why the reader has to understand and then accept these characters for who and what they are. Spanbauer's language is difficult in the beginning and definitely takes getting used to but when you do, its quite worth it. You just have to understand that these people come from a wholly different place, with different beliefs and lifestyles. Once you get past that, you actually grow to love them.

  • JC Lobo
    2019-03-27 01:05

    Grandes historias, pero sobretodo, grandísimos personajes. Creo que los recordaré siempre.

  • Georgia Portuondo
    2019-04-19 05:55

    Excerpt: If the baby is a boy, and he reaches for the bow and feather--then you've got a boy, the Tybos figure, whose human-being sex story is the way every boy's sex story had better be. If the baby is a girl, and she reaches for the gourd and basket--then you got a girl whose human-being sex story is the way every girl's sex story had better be. But if the boy reaches for the gourd and basket, or if the girl reaches for the bow and feather, then in Tybo, you got a boy or you got a girl whose human-being sex story is a sex story you got to shut up about. . . . Ida told the story of my test this way: “The Princess got all the girls together in her room, me and Ellen Finton, Gracie Hammer and herself. “There we were, the four excellent whores of Excellent, Idaho, and this baby boy. the Princess puts a feather and a bow on one side of the kid on the bed. She puts a gourd and a basket on the other side of him. Then she says to us, ‘Watch!’ So, we watch. The kid does nothing but lay there. We watch some more. He lays there some more. I’m about ready to give up on this test when the kid rolls over. First time in his life he’s rolled over! We all gasp and cheer and talk baby talk. Then, you’ll never believe it--what this kid did, you’ll never believe: he reaches up to me! To me! He grabs a hold of my feathers--my feathered boa! . . . He didn’t reach for the bow and the feather--he reached for the feathered boa.”

  • Joanna Sundby
    2019-03-31 04:53

    Ouch!!! The violence in this book is so real as to be almost inescapable, the way violence is when you live with it. The day to day degradation and loss of power suffered by the main character, Shed might seem over the top to some who don't know the history of the west. But everything about this book is as crisply true to life as if it had been written in High Def. All stars are against Shed as his is illegitimate, fist nations, orphaned, and bisexual. He is put to work selling himself and his employer, the matron of the hotel. But Shed knows what love is, and where to find it. His instincts that he calls 'killdeer' are flawless. He even gets away from the addictive love of the green eyed cowboy who falls for the moon. Mind bending, heart breaking, riff with savage abuse and unfiltered ignorance, this is still a love story, and one worth reading. I would call it, the man who fell in love with himself and that label is by no means a criticism. The happy ending, if you can call it that, hinges on the enslaved lover finding self worth on his own terms. That's hope, folks, and you gotta love hope.

  • Bee
    2019-04-16 06:01

    I really don't know how to review this book. It's kinda like a Tom Robbins Western, but better written, more succinct. Pithy as hell. Some deep wisdom from years of people watching. Insights into you the reader as you look out at the world through the eye's of Out-In-The-Shed. Sad, and brightly hilarious. Yugen aplenty. The story of a family, a family of whores and half breeds, cowboys with mystical insight and Damn Dave and his Damn Dog. It's a story of people telling themselves their human-being stories, and the drama that unfolds as we all try to look for something, but are in fact looking for something else entirely. There is so much love, and hope, and tons of sex, and drinking and opium and dicks. There's religion and then there's religion. And killdeer, killdeer everywhere.TL;DR, read it.

  • Emily
    2019-03-24 01:53

    This is one of my favorite books ever. The main character is so wonderful, with a voice all his own that might make the book difficult to read initially, but like in real life, if you spend time with him you quickly learn to flow with his unique rhythm and language. So many lines are quotable for their simplicity, beauty, and clear-eyed wisdom. This is just a little taste: "Indian people talk about the mountain that Excellent, Idaho, is built in the shadow of--the mountain the morning sun rises behind--how it is the reason why we're acting the way we are. Indian stories say the mountain has powered us here--snagged us. We may think we're here for this reason or for that reason. We may think that what we're doing is what we're doing, but really what we're doing is being snagged by the spirit of the mountain."

  • Randal
    2019-03-27 03:45

    Queer as folktales. This is the kind of book I've been craving to read for a long time--and not just because it features a multiracial, bisexual boy raised in a turn-of-the-twentieth-century whorehouse.Yes, it's heavy-handed at times. A couple of key phrases are hammered home a bit too frequently. Race wanders in and out of the story like a bull that had sensitivity training before entering the china shop. And sex is presented either too bluntly or too abstractly.But there's a sweet mysticism to “The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon.” It's an old yarn told with a modern sensibility. And somehow the characters consistently read as archetype instead of caricature, making for a vivid and endearing tale about a wild, wild, bohemian West that probably never was.

  • Xhmko
    2019-04-09 06:50

    This book is extraordinary. There is no blushing or coy looks in this book. It is dirty and insightful. It is depraved and celebratory. It is essential reading for prude people who have would benefit immensely from this considered exploration of the delicate network of relationships in a frontier American brothel.This book makes me want to meet the author, not just to soak in his brilliance but to absorb his compassion and be infiltrated by his empathy. The mundanity of life below not-really-a-mountain is as ever just the cloak for the mutations of spirituality and diverse approaches to soul seeking that the human experience can offer when engaged with in the profane.

  • Libby
    2019-04-13 02:47

    I have heard that Spanbauer is the king of "dangerous writing" and after reading this book I believe it. If you ever wondered about my e-mail address movesmoves, it refers to something in this novel.

  • Xander
    2019-03-24 07:45

    Beautifully written. Queer as fuck without calling itself such. About whores, cowboys, Indians, Mormons, and so much more, in the late 1800s... The characters will become good friends who you hate to leave when you've finished the book.

  • Alfie Paul
    2019-04-03 00:01

    I adored this book. It's a charming little tale of a band of misfits and really spoke to me about being different in a world of conformity. I'd add that I've read this several times, and given it to many people who have ended up loving it as much as me.

  • Laia Pérez G
    2019-03-21 07:55

    Ressenya completa ací: hombre que se enamoró de la lunavenia amb moltes recomanacions, però també venia amb advertències: "no el llegiu si no teniu la ment ben oberta!", "no el llegiu si aneu carregats de prejudicis!" En fi, jo m'hi vaig endinsar, tota valenta, en la prosa d'Spanbauer. I què em vaig trobar? Un entorn primitiu, la cerca de la identitat, un relat on l'amistat i la família cobren nous significats, però també vaig haver de llegir sobre violència, barbàrie, sexe explícit i mort. A mi me costa moltíssim llegir sobre alguns temes, i aquesta novel·la no ha sigut una lectura fàcil; me costava horrors seguir llegint i, tot i que aprecie la delicadesa dels protagonistes i les seues relacions, no m'ha acabat d'agradar i m'ha deixat un regust no massa agradable.

  • Bea Elwood
    2019-04-18 23:41

    What did I just read? It took me a few pages to start to get into the story but then for a while I liked the narrative. I don't know when I fell out of like with the book but by the second half I was wishing somebody had told the author he had too much going on.

  • Mieko Yoshimura
    2019-04-11 05:54

    This is unlike any book you will ever, and I have ever, read. I suggest going into it knowing nothing and except be prepared to be amazed. There is not enough praise I can heap on this.

  • Cynthia Sillitoe
    2019-04-11 02:59

    Okay, so there's story behind this book in my house. My mom loved it, but every time she read it, she teased me about the age I had to be to read it. 18, 21, 25, 30. Last time she read it, she said I had to be 40. I was 33 when she died and I set it aside as my 40th birthday present from my mom. First off, I wish it were on Kindle because the font is small and I tend to skim things. Second, just a little more sperm and ejaculation than I care to read about and a little too much romanticizing about sex work. I mean, I guess if you like to have sex, it's a good line of business to go into, but not a lot of dwelling on the abuse that can go on. In fact, considering one character had been raped, it seemed like maybe that person might want a different kind of work, but that doesn't seem to be a problem. Also, neither I nor my dad (who is a Mormon historian) have ever heard of a Mormon being called the Reverend Brother So-and-So, though as my dad points out, Idaho is its own Kingdom. So why the four stars? Some amazing characters, writing, and plot twists. I think I'll read it again in a few years and see if I like it more.

  • Candi Sary
    2019-04-10 00:38

    "The Man Who Fell In Love With The Moon" is like no other book I've ever read. Spanbauer is a fabulous storyteller! He does something magical on the pages as he brings his characters and scenes to life. The book's unique perspective of the Old West is fascinating. Yes, his characters are flawed and sometimes behave in ways that made me uncomfortable, but that's part of what makes the book so interesting. I read a review where the reader gave the book a low rating in part because she thought the mother was such a terrible person. I love when fiction offers "terrible people" and presents their stories so thoroughly that we might understand why they did what they did. I love a true exploration of human nature, not a safe, ideal presentation. Spanbauer doesn't hold back with his characters. He shows the ugly, the beautiful, the unspoken and the outrageous, creating a story so raw and honest, it's hard not to get caught up in his bizarre world. I opened my mind, stepped outside of myself, and just took in the experience. Every day I looked forward to picking up the book as I had no idea what to expect next! This is a most memorable and thought-provoking read.

  • Dena Guzman
    2019-03-22 08:02

    I first read this book in college, I think. I remember getting it on sale. I was intrigued by the cover. I read it up so fast; such excellent storytelling. Over the years, I have met other people who have read this book (at the time I lived in Las Vegas and barely knew anyone who read to begin with) and the opinions vary so much. I think it's one of the best told stories I've ever read. I do see issues with portrayals of gender/race/sexuality, of course. And I am sensitive to those things and always notice them but I am also of the firm opinion that all art and literature do not have to do everything right or to the standards of the standard keepers every time. I don't know the author's motivation here. Was it ignorance or intentional toying with stereotype? I don't know. I liked the book. A lot. I still own the copy I got all those years ago. I'm not too sentimental, so this says something.