Study Guide

Angle of Repose Part 8, Chapter 3

By Wallace Stegner

Part 8, Chapter 3

  • Guess what we've got for you, folks—a bunch of letters from Susan to Augusta.
  • Things are going well, both for the family and the canal project. Susan tells Augusta that Frank's feelings toward her are still really obvious, but she's quite capable of resisting.
  • Sure.
  • In August, Susan sends Ollie to St. Paul's, a boarding school on the East Coast. He doesn't want to go but has no choice.
  • There are still plenty of problems with the canal project. For example, there's a rash of people stealing land that has already been claimed.
  • In one letter, Susan thanks Augusta for letting Ollie visit them. That's nice. Then, in the next letter, she thanks Augusta for letting Frank visit them. That's less nice.
  • On June 16, 1890, "the water was turned into the first fifteen miles of the Susan Canal" (8.3.61). This is exciting for Susan, especially because it means that Bessie and John will be moving out next fall.
  • Susan's next letter is filled with bad news. First, work on the canal has been stopped once again for the typical reasons (namely: $$$). The second one is even worse: a lawyer named Bradford Burns has pulled some shady business and claimed Bessie and John's land as his own.
  • What frustrates Susan is that Oliver, in typical Oliver fashion, refuses to put his foot down and confront Burns. To make things worse, the family is too broke right now to pay back Bessie and John.