Margaret Atwood's The Robber Bride is inspired by "The Robber Bridegroom", a wonderfully grisly tale from the Brothers Grimm in which an evil groom lures three maidens into his lair and devours them, one by one. But in her version, Atwood brilliantly recasts the monster as Zenia, a villainess of demonic proportions, and sets her loose in the lives of three friends: Tony, Charis, and Roz. All three "have lost men, spirit, money, and time to their old college acquaintance, Zenia. At various times, and in various emotional disguises, Zenia has insinuated her way into their lives and practically demolished them.
To Tony, who almost lost her husband and jeopardized her academic career, Zenia is "a lurking enemy commando". To Roz, who did lose her husband and almost her magazine, Zenia is "a cold and treacherous bitch". To Charis, who lost a boyfriend, quarts of vegetable juice, and some pet chickens, Zenia is a kind of zombie, maybe "soulless" (Lorrie Moore, New York Times Book Review). In love and war, illusion and deceit, Zenia's subterranean malevolence takes us deep into her enemies' pasts.
©2011 Margaret Atwood (P)2011 Random House
"Moving amid these three women, touching up their portraits with one perfect detail after another, conjuring Zenia from their memories and tears, Atwood is in her glory. What a treasure she is, and what a fine new book she has written" (Newsweek)
Margaret Atwood is my favorite author, and I was not disappointed with this book. I found the story interesting and unique, with great character development. I loved the voice and style of the narrator--she was perfect for the voices of all three main characters.
An introverted excavator.
I went outside of my comfort zone with this book. It was turned into a Lifetime movie, definitely not my thing. But it was so much fun! I really cared about the characters and could not wait to hear more as their individual mysteries unraveled.
All three protagonists were wonderful in their own way.
I have not heard Ms. Dunne read before, but I really enjoyed her. I forgot I was listening to a single person, but she wasn't over the top. Pretty flawless.
Absolutely, I was antisocial during this story. I had my ear phones in all the time.
great story and fascinating characters
Xenia, who was mysterious and impacted the lives of all in this story
convincing depiction of different characters
I write for myself, for my own pleasure. And I want to be left alone to do it. - Salinger ^(;,;)^
It started off strong but ended with a well-written whimper. The prose was strong, the characters were interesting, but in the end it just seemed a little too predictable a tad too structured. By the concluding sentence, it almost felt as if Atwood was bored with her own novel.
I loved this! I've read several books by the incomparable Margaret Atwood and this one holds one of my topmost slots! Great story, perfectly drawn characters, mixed with Atwood's ever impeccable writing! Fantastic!
I'm an artist and an art historian, and a chef, and a dog mom, master crocheter, a mediocre gardener, and a girlfriend, mostly. My favorite authors (in equal amounts of favorite) are Tom Robbins, Jane Austen, J.D. Salinger, and Haruki Murakami.
This took me an unusually long time to finish. Most of Atwood's books I fly through. But this one was slow. I liked the characters, but I didn't like that continually I had to hear the same story from 3 pts of view. It was overkill for me.
I listen to novels for distraction and entertainment and rate them on the experience, not literary merit. I prefer to read good literature.
Margaret Atwood is one of my literary Gods.
....so I was really surprised at this labored story.
Throughout the listening experience, I kept wondering if she had written the Robber Bride at college while attending a class inspired by Joseph Campbell and Jung then hauled it off a back shelf, dusted it off and sent it to her publisher 20 years later. There is a workmanlike sincerity creating a dullness in the Robber Bride that even the efforts of the excellent Ms. Dunne's narrative can't polish.
Although I haven't listened, I have read and reread most of Ms Atwood's work. Pick something else- ANYTHING else.
I can't recommend the Robber Bride to even devotees like me.
I'm a horror, sci-fi fan. My favourites are Lovecraft, Poe, Bierce, Jackson, Levin, and King.
Zenia seems omnipotent.
The Robber Bridegroom- short story by the Brothers' Grimm. Zenia is a "man-eater", and manipulates women to cater to her whims.
I loved the different voices for each character. Ms. Dunne had a pleasant voice, with a steady pace.
No, but I've know a Zenia or two in my 40 years; I thought of and think of them as bullies. None of them, unfortunately, ever faked their deaths or actually died...yet.
The idea of Zenia and her involvement with each woman, and their families, made me wonder about assigned gender roles, people's choices, and the causal network. It was thought provoking.
Margaret Atwood is a fabulous author. I have enjoyed many of her books, but I found this particular one very slow going, downright boring and lacking in any form of suspense or foreshadowing to keep me from giving up. Maybe I'll get back to it one day, but I don't have high hopes.
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