Released on 11 April 2013.

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3.98 based on 11198 ratings & 1863 reviews on

2014 Short-listed

James Tait Black Prize for Fiction

2014 Long-listed

The Folio Prize


One long last summer for Dad Lewis in his beloved town, Holt, Colorado. As old friends pass in and out of his front door to voice their farewells, their prayers, their good wishes, Dad’s wife and daughter work to make his final days as comfortable as possible, knowing all is tainted by the heart-break of an absent son.

Next door, a little girl moves in with her grandmother and is drawn into the circle of friendship, her innocence and youth providing promise and hope to all those around her.

And down town another new arrival, the Reverend Rob Lyle, attempts to mend strained relationships of his own, as he faces up to his latest congregation.

Set in an imaginative landscape as vivid and powerful as those of Cormac McCarthy and Annie Proulx, Benediction is a devastating yet affirming novel that explores the pain, the compassion and above all the humanity of ordinary people.

In the media

Haruf is maguslike in his gifts. . . to illuminate the inevitable ways in which tributary lives meander toward confluence. . . . Perhaps not since Hemingway has an American author triggered such reader empathy with so little reliance on the subjectivity of his characters. . . . [This] is a modestly wrought wonder from one of our finest living writers.
The Houston Chronicle
Reverberant… From the terroir and populace of his native American West, the author of Plainsong and Eventide again draws a story elegant in its simple telling and remarkable in its authentic capture of universal human emotions.
Benediction suggests there’s no end to the stories Haruf can tell about Holt or to the tough, gorgeous language he can summon in the process.
New York Times