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Last Updated on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 136

Plainsong is a 1999 novel by the American writer Kent Haruf (1943–2014). It weaves together several story lines, featuring a complex tapestry of characters.

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Maggie Jones is among those characters. A schoolteacher, she either appears—or is referred to —across most of the novel and is a common point of acquaintance among the other characters.

Victoria Roubideaux is a pregnant student of Maggie's who comes to rely on Maggie due to rejection by both her mother and the child's older father.

Four other characters are anchored in the Guthrie household. Tom Guthrie, his wife, and his two sons Bobby and Ike lead a disturbed and despondent home life due to the mother's self-imposed and inexplicable isolation. Like Maggie, Tom Guthrie is a teacher.

Other major characters in Plainsong include Raymond and Harold McPheron, Mrs. Sterns, and Ralph Black.

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