Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Kent Haruf  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction

Audience: Adult;

Born: February 24, 1943 in Pueblo, Colorado

Died: November 30, 2014, Salida, Colorado

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-- Kent Haruf on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Haruf lived in Murphysboro and retired from teaching at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.

Biographical and Professional Information

Before becoming a writer, Kent Haruf worked in many places, including a chicken farm in Colorado, a construction site in Wyoming, a rehabilitation hospital in Denver, a hospital in Phoenix, a presidential library in Iowa, an alternative high school in Wisconsin and as an English teacher with the Peace Corps in Turkey. From 1986 - 1991, he was an assistant professor at Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln, Nebraska and an associate professor at Southern Illinois Universtiy in Carbondale, Illinois from 1991- 2000.

Published Works

    Plainsong Series:
  • Plainsong, Knopf, 1999
  • Eventide, Knopf, 2004
  • Benediction,Knopf, 2013Individual Books:
  • Where You Once Belonged, Summit, 1991
  • The Tie That Binds, Knopf, 2000
  • West of Last Chance, Norton & Company, 2008 - with photographer Peter Brown
  • Our Souls at Night, Knopf, 2015

Selected Titles At Your Library

Plainsong /
ISBN: 0330393146. OCLC Number:

Vintage Books,. New York :. [2001]

"Ambitious, but never seeming so, Kent Haruf reveals a whole community as he interweaves the stories of a pregnant high school girl, a lonely teacher, a pair of boys abandoned by their mother, and a couple of crusty bachelor farmers. From simple elements, Haruf achieves a novel of wisdom and grace--a narrative that builds in strength and feeling until, as in a choral chant, the voices in the book surround, transport, and lift the reader off the ground."--THE CITATION FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARDFrom the Trade Paperback edition.

Eventide :
ISBN: 0330433725. OCLC Number:

Picador,. London :. 2004.

When the McPheron brothers see Victoria Roubideaux, the single mother they'd taken in, move from their ranch to begin college, an emptiness opens before them and for many other townspeople it also promises to be a long, hard winter.

Where you once belonged :
ISBN: 033049046X. OCLC Number:

Picador,. London :. 2004.

Former high-school football hero Jack Burdette returns to his hometown eight years after he had left, but his one-time pranks and high-spirited high jinks have turned into crimes--with terrifying consequences for the people of Holt County.

The tie that binds /
ISBN: 0330490451. OCLC Number:

Picador,. London :. 2002.

Edith Goodenough, the courageous daughter of Colorado homesteaders, finds herself bound by duty, love, and obligation to her crippled father and, by strength and determination, learns to live within the constraints of that responsibility.

West of last chance /
ISBN: 0393065723. OCLC Number:

W.W. Norton & Co.,. New York :. ©2008.

Photographs and text reflecting the land, life, and people of the Great Plains of Colorado, New Mexico, South Dakota, Kansas, Wyoming, Nebraska, Utah, Oklahoma and Texas.

Our souls at night /
ISBN: 1101875895. OCLC Number:

. .

In Holt, Colorado, widower Louis Waters is initially thrown when the widowed Addie Moore suggests that they spend time together, in bed, to stave off loneliness. "No, not sex," she clarifies. "I'm talking about getting through the night. And lying warm in bed, companionably." Her husband died years ago, as did his wife, and in such a small town they naturally have known of each other for decades; in fact, Addie was quite fond of Louis's wife. His daughter lives hours away in Colorado Springs, her son even farther away in Grand Junction, and Addie and Louis have long been living alone in houses now empty of family, the nights so terribly lonely, especially with no one to talk with.


The Tie That Binds

  • Whiting Award for Fiction, 1986
  • Citation, Pen/Hemingway Foundation
  • Plainsong

  • Mountains & Plains Booksellers Award
  • Maria Thomas Award in Fiction
  • Finalist, National Book Award, 1999
  • Finalist, Los Angeles Times Book Prize
  • Finalist, The New Yorker Book Award
  • Where You Once Belonged

  • Finalist, Book Sense Award, 2005
  • Eventide

  • Colorado Book Award, 2005
  • Benediction

  • Shortlisted, Folio Prize, 2014

    Other Awards