Another summer much ado about not much. Endless details about everyone's relationship to everyone else, and as a literary hook, how these relationships might or might not hinge on a rather thin play written by one of them. The whole mess is about how one of the characters was not in love with another one who died. Miller reads her own work in a low, slow, often raspy voice that often drops the last two words of a sentence. Although Miller has an amazing grasp of language and the subtleties of human nature, I found myself screaming with boredom internally as I waded through her characters' uninteresting minds. Not much happened, except Miller, I assume, will be making some money this summer.
Kind of like friends.....if they ultimately just don't add to your life in a positive way, you can do other things with your time. I loved Tillie and Carrigan and the prostitutes, but the rest was just endlessly boring and contrived.
This is a bit of a British disappointment....you get really engrossed and then the ending falls apart. The story and characters are believable, but there doesn't seem to be any resolution for anyone. And the author starts to repeat himself....they looked at each other for a very long time, after a long time, etc, etc, etc. I think maybe Cleave was told to finish in a hurry....he really didn't think it through. Again, as with so many of the books I've listened to, I say, where are the editors? Who reads these books before they are published and polishes them? I think Cleave should have re read his work for a very long time.
This is a must read if you want to know about the work Mortenson has done in Pakistan, and to understand the culture and people there. I found it fascinating, and the work was also well read by Patrick Lawlor, and well written, as well. However, listening to every detail of Mortenson's mission for 13 hours was really grueling. It might have been possible to edit slightly. Or maybe not? I loved getting to know Mortenson through the book; I have become a huge fan, even though I thought I wouldn't like it due to all the media hype it got originally. So terribly sad to think what is happening in Pakistan now. My heart goes out to the people there, who are so fierce, vital, and generous of heart. Only wish we had access to the photos in the book itself, and the spelling of the names, etc. Audio books really lose the power of the written word that way.
I wish I had this book in my hands to quote from it...a definite lack in this listening thing. I find this short novel exquisite. Every line has meaning. The relationships are achingly full of perception and grace. The metaphor of the river, and fly fishing, is omnipresent and speaks of the love that is shot through the main characters' interactions with each other. I have listened to this book twice, and read it once. The film is ghastly....the meaning is in the words, and layered: the river, fly fishing, one's relation to one's god, brothers and families, the story of the prodigal son, violence and mayhem of the heart, the beauty of knowing something. And in closing: I plan to just ignore reviews that don't recognize or understand the craft of fiction.
I liked The Wife's Tale. I like Mary Gooch, the way it was read by Justine Eyre, the tone of much of Canadian writing. The sentence structure was varied and unusual. I found myself rooting for Mary and delighted with the many turns of events. I even liked the ending, which I won't tell. Lansen only gets 3 stars for her effort because of her total lack of subtlety. Heavy handed alliteration; repetitive, predictable reactions to Mary's weight ; the inexplicable motives behind her husband's actions; Mary's on again off again brain tumor scare that is explained by cultural voodoo; and my least favorite, Lansen's assumption that all Hispanics in California are from Mexico. Mary, however, is a lovely woman and I will not forget her. I'm pretty sure her husband agrees. Maybe he had brain damage? I think Lori Lansen needs a better editor.
Although the premise of this novel (infidelity) was thoughtful and covered just about every possible point of view,from the perspective of a man cheating on his wife that is, the novel itself was rife with cliches and tired old turns of phrase. The characters were sketchy as well...I wanted to like them but I never really got to know them very well. It was believable enough to engage me, but not something I would want to admit. Kind of like an average TV show. I am sure this novel will be able to keep Giffin in groceries for awhile.
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