United We Read
Back to Introduction
About the Author
Calendar of Events Guides for Participating Reading Groups
Suggestions for Further Reading
Participating groups
Sponsors How Do I Participate in the Campaign?
How Can I Sponsor the Campaign? Message Board

Characters in the Book
Plainsong by Kent Haruf

Tom Guthrie is a high school teacher in rural Holt, Colorado. For some time now he's been raising his two boys alone. His wife has all but abandoned her family. Home problems can't hide the work problems.

Guthrie is failing a star athlete who threatens to make life difficult for the teacher. Though he's taking a stand, he gets little support from the administration in this thankless job.

Ike and Bobby are Guthrie's nine and ten year-old sons. Their paper route earns them extra cash, but there's little else to fill the days. The brothers struggle to understand their mother's intentions on top of other events in their farm town.

Victoria Roubideaux is seventeen and pregnant. Her boyfriend is long gone and her mom has kicked her out of the house. Alone and scared, she finds support in one of her teachers. By the end of the story, Victoria will learn a great deal about life and love.

Maggie Jones is the lady in whom Victoria confides. She goes above and beyond the call of duty by taking care of a student this way. Perhaps that's how it is done in Holt.

Raymond and Harold McPheron are elderly bachelor brothers who take in Victoria when her mother throws her out of her home for being pregnant. The McPheron brothers teach Victoria the values of trust, family and self-respect.

Read an excerpt from Plainsong Read reviews of Plainsong Further suggested reading

For further information contact:
Kansas City Metropolitan Library & Information Network
15624 E. 24 Highway
Independence, MO 64050
Phone: (816) 521-7257
Fax: (816) 461-0966
Email: sburton@kcmlin.org