HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

State of Wonder by Ann Patchett
Loading...

State of Wonder (edition 2011)

by Ann Patchett

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
3,302None1,644 (3.91)2 / 330
Member:omphalos02
Title:State of Wonder
Authors:Ann Patchett
Info:Harper (2011), Edition: 1st, Hardcover, 368 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:None

Work details

State of Wonder by Ann Patchett

2011 (60) 2012 (43) 2013 (21) Amazon (188) audiobook (31) book club (39) brasil (133) contemporary fiction (21) ebook (30) ethics (31) fertility (78) fiction (419) jungle (54) Kindle (44) literary fiction (32) malaria (48) medicine (91) Minnesota (26) mystery (23) novel (47) pharmaceuticals (29) read (39) read in 2011 (35) read in 2012 (33) research (30) science (41) scientists (41) signed (28) South America (65) to-read (81)
  1. 171
    The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver (VenusofUrbino)
  2. 91
    Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver (BillPilgrim)
    BillPilgrim: I heard the comparison/recommendation here: http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2011/07/25/midmorning2/
  3. 60
    Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad (DetailMuse)
  4. 10
    The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert (zhejw)
  5. 10
    Intuition by Allegra Goodman (raidergirl3)
    raidergirl3: scientific research; Orange Prize nominee
  6. 21
    The White Mary by Kira Salak (FranklyMyDarling)
    FranklyMyDarling: An adventurous novel of a woman searching for a disappeared writer in the jungle of Papua New Guinea.
  7. 21
    The Testament by John Grisham (clif_hiker)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

English (245)  Dutch (2)  All languages (247)
Showing 1-5 of 245 (next | show all)
Oh. Not sure what I just read. Well...it was "unusual".
Sisters, you both read it, I think, so I added it to my list.
Of course, as all books, even fiction - it introduced me to situations, circumstance that wouldn't have been on my "radar". Exotic Amazon setting for developing drugs and it's not unusual that end results are often far different than expected - accidental discoveries. Certainly some surprising twists that kept me turning pages.
Characters were hard for me to understand, so one more that I'm not disappointed to have read, but more confused by . . . . ( )
  CasaBooks | Mar 14, 2014 |
Need to finish.
  CocacolaGirl | Mar 12, 2014 |
The first book I've read by Ann Patchett, I will try more. It is slow in parts, but overall worth the read. A few twists at the end. ( )
  Neale | Feb 19, 2014 |
I knew I was loving this book, its setting, its themes and its characters when I started carrying it around with me to read at every free moment (eating breakfast, waiting on hold, waiting in line at the store). I don't believe I've ever before gasped out loud at the reappearance of a beloved character ("Oh! Milton!") who I'd missed and was glad to see again.

In a book that stretches believability, mine got stretched too far too many times. But this is a beautiful book, one well worth praise and study.

Petrea Burchard
Camelot & Vine ( )
  PetreaBurchard | Feb 9, 2014 |
This was an engaging book with a unique and well-constructed plot and interesting characters. It addresses moral issues and the complexities of human life without becoming preachy. Through out the story there was an underlying sense of something not-quite-right - a sort-of mystery. Given this sense, the ending was satisfying, even though it left some things a bit vague and open to interpretation. ( )
  sbsolter | Feb 6, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 245 (next | show all)
In her latest novel, Ann Patchett, author of the beloved Bel Canto, takes her readers down the Amazon and deep into the rain forest in a book that is part adventure story, part morality tale...This book may be on a lot of book club lists already — but with good reason...
added by Jcambridge | editNPR, Lynn Neary (Jan 1, 2012)
 
State of Wonder is heavy with literary parallels (to Henry James, to Greek myth), but in this respect the strongest links are to Heart of Darkness, a novel that Patchett substantially rewrites, with Conrad's male text repopulated with female characters (Swenson is this book's Kurtz). It lacks the developed emotional core of Patchett's earlier books, but it is her most mature work to date, a novel that tries to be more alive to the nerve ends of philosophical life than to the simpler machinery of character motivation.
 
“State of Wonder” is an engaging, consummately told tale. Patchett’s deadpan narrative style showcases a dry humor that enables her to wed, with fine effect, the world of “Avatar” or the “Odyssey” with that of corporate board meetings, R&D reports and peer review...

“State of Wonder” is an immensely touching novel, although as with much of Patchett’s work, its emotional impact is somewhat muted by her indefatigable niceness.
 
Nail-biting action scenes include a young boy’s near-mortal crushing by a 15-foot anaconda, whose head Marina lops off with a machete; they’re balanced by contemplative moments that give this gripping novel spiritual and metaphysical depth, right down to the final startling plot twist.
added by Shortride | editKirkus Reviews (Feb 1, 2011)
 

» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ann Patchettprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Daddio, Jennifer AnnDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Duval, NateCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ferguson, ArchieCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
To my friend Jo VanDevender
First words
The news of Anders' Eckman's death came by way of Aerogram, a piece of bright blue airmail paper that served as both the stationery and, when folded over and sealed along the edges, the envelope.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Book description
Years ago, Marina Singh traded the hard decisions and intensity of medical practice for the quieter world of research at a pharmaceutical company, a choice that has haunted her life. Enveloping herself in safety, limiting emotional risk, she shares a quiet intimacy with her widowed older boss. Mr. Fox, and a warm friendship with her colleague Anders Eckman. But Marina's security is shaken when she learns that Anders, sent to the Amazon to check on a field team, is dead - and Mr. Fox wants her to go into the jungle to discover what happened. Plagued by trepidation, Marina embarks on an odyssey into the unknown, down into the Amazonian delta, deep into the dense, insect-infested jungle, to find answers from the company's research team. Led by the formidable Dr. Annick Swenson, the scientists are looking into the development of a new drug that could have a profound impact on Western society. But the team has been silent for two years, and Dr. Swenson does not like interlopers inserting themselves into her work, as Marina well knows. The eminent and fiercely uncompromising doctor was once her mentor, the woman she admired, emulated, and feared. To fulfill her mission, Marina must confront the ghosts of her past, as well as unfulfilled dreams and ecxpectations-on a journey that will force her to make painful moral choices and take her to the depths of her own heart of darkness. (ARC)
Haiku summary
endless river
love lost
love found

(Sogamonk)
Everything's easy
after killing
anaconda

(ReneeGKC)

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0062049801, Hardcover)

Amazon Best Books of the Month, June 2011: In State of Wonder, pharmaceutical researcher Dr. Marina Singh sets off into the Amazon jungle to find the remains and effects of a colleague who recently died under somewhat mysterious circumstances. But first she must locate Dr. Anneck Swenson, a renowned gynecologist who has spent years looking at the reproductive habits of a local tribe where women can conceive well into their middle ages and beyond. Eccentric and notoriously tough, Swenson is paid to find the key to this longstanding childbearing ability by the same company for which Dr. Singh works. Yet that isn’t their only connection: both have an overlapping professional past that Dr. Singh has long tried to forget. In finding her former mentor, Dr. Singh must face her own disappointments and regrets, along with the jungle’s unforgiving humidity and insects, making State of Wonder a multi-layered atmospheric novel that is hard to put down. Indeed, Patchett solidifies her well-deserved place as one of today’s master storytellers. Emotional, vivid, and a work of literature that will surely resonate with readers in the weeks and months to come, State of Wonder truly is a thing of beauty and mystery, much like the Amazon jungle itself. --Jessica Schein


Amazon Exclusive: Elizabeth Gilbert Interviews Ann Patchett

Elizabeth Gilbert is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller, Eat, Pray, Love, as well as the short story collection Pilgrims—a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award, and winner of the 1999 John C. Zacharis First Book Award from Ploughshares. A Pushcart Prize winner and National Magazine Award-nominated journalist, she works as writer-at-large for GQ.

Elizabeth Gilbert: As your close personal friend, I happen to know that you traveled to the Amazon to conduct research for this novel, and that you sort of hated the Amazon--can you share a little about that?

Ann Patchett: I absolutely loved the Amazon for four days. It was gorgeous and unfamiliar and deeply fascinating. Unfortunately, I stayed there for ten days. There are a lot of insects in the Amazon, a lot of mud, surprisingly few vegetables, too many snakes. You can’t go anywhere by yourself, which makes sense if you don’t know the terrain, but I enjoy going places by myself. I can see how great it would be for a very short visit, and how great it would be if you lived there and had figured out what was and wasn’t going to kill you, but the interim length of time isn’t great.

EG: Didn't I hear that you have a sort of magical story about a friend who is also a writer, who was also once going to write a book about the Amazon? Can you share this miraculous tale? Also, is your writer friend pretty?

AP: This friend of mine, who happens to be you, is gorgeous, and much taller in real life. Yes, you were writing a novel about the Amazon, and then you decided not to write a novel about the Amazon, and then I started writing a novel about the Amazon, and later when we compared notes (your book dismissed, mine halfway finished) they had remarkably similar story lines, to the point of being eerie. I thought this must be because it was an incredibly banal idea and we had both come up with a generic Amazon novel, but then you told me that ideas fly around looking for homes, and when the idea hadn’t worked out with you it came to me. If this is true I think your name should be on the cover. It would increase sales significantly.

EG: Readers of your prior work--particularly the luminous Bel Canto--will be delighted to see that opera makes an appearance in this novel, as well. In fact, one of the most dramatic scenes in the book takes place at the opera. Is that a wink and a nod to loyal readers, or just an expression of your own deep and abiding musical passions?

AP: It’s a wink and a nod to Werner Herzog and his brilliant Amazon film “Fitzcarraldo” which opens at the opera house in Manaus where the aforementioned scene takes place. I had very little experience with opera when I wrote Bel Canto, and since then it’s become a huge part of my life. It was fun to write a scene set at the opera now that I know what I’m talking about.

EG: State of Wonder a rollicking adventure story, full of peril and bravery and death-defying action. I personally know you to be a homebody who likes to bake muffins for neighbors. How the heck did you pull off this wildness so convincingly? Was it as invigorating to write as it is to read?

AP: Ah, the life of the mind. All the adventure I need I can dream up in my kitchen. I love writing outside of my own experience, making imaginary worlds. If I wrote novels based on my own life I would not be making a living at this. I also love to write a strong plot. I want things to happen in my books, I want to be thrilled. I always think about Raymond Chandler. I’m sure I’m getting the phrasing wrong but the general idea is that when things get slow, bring in a man with a gun. If you can’t find a gun, a poison arrow works just as well.

EG: The cover is a work of beauty. Authors are not always so lucky. Tell us how you managed such a miracle?

AP: When I first started writing this book, I came downstairs one night and found my husband listening to “Horowitz at Carnegie Hall”. The album cover has a very lush filigreed border. I had two thoughts: first, I have an amazing husband who thankfully held onto his Horowitz LPs; second, that the album cover had the exact the feeling I wanted for my book--half jungle, half Baroque period. When I was finished writing the novel I sent the album to my editor, who sent it to the art department. They understood exactly what I was talking about.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:03 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

A researcher at a pharmaceutical company, Marina Singh journeys into the heart of the Amazonian delta to check on a field team that has been silent for two years--a dangerous assignment that forces Marina to confront the ghosts of her past.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
5 avail.
2453 wanted
5 pay6 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.91)
0.5
1 15
1.5 1
2 58
2.5 16
3 221
3.5 91
4 483
4.5 112
5 279

Audible.com

An edition of this book was published by Audible.com.

See editions

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 89,493,654 books! | Top bar: Always visible