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The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta
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The Leftovers (2011)

by Tom Perrotta

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1,1181067,379 (3.45)70
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Wild ending! ( )
  ChewDigest | Sep 12, 2014 |
Wild ending! ( )
  ChewDigest | Sep 12, 2014 |
The author's style of narration is exciting. It made me want to know what happens next. Excellent plot and choice of characters. I only wish that there was a satisfying ending to the book. It's one of those open-endings that leave room of lots of speculations. The story for sure sticks with the reader. The HBO adaptation for the new hit series by the same title is slightly different from the original plot in the book. I'm looking forward to watching season 2 on HBO since season 1 ended with the way the book ended. ( )
  Emanbella | Sep 8, 2014 |
I cannot believe I´m saying this but the HBO adaptation is better than the book. ( )
  thiscatsabroad | Aug 27, 2014 |
This book had been sitting on my shelf for a while, unread and catching dust when the novel's adaption on HBO premiered and I decided it was time to catch up and understand the show better.

Let me just tell you now, things in the book are much different from the show. Sometimes for the better and sometimes for worse. But most things that are different I can understand, because if you followed true to the book, it could only be a mini series.

The writing was good and the story great. Check it out. ( )
  Alexander19 | Aug 23, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 106 (next | show all)
One might argue that The Leftovers is missing the details of the Sudden Departure that provide the book’s premise, but that is irrelevant to Perrotta’s purpose. In a post-9/11, post-economic-collapse world, we do not require an apocalyptic event to underwrite the plausibility of sudden, catastrophic change. Perrotta’s true interests — and the novel’s rich gifts — lie in exploring the way that traditional suburban structures of meaning fail to cohere under the pressure of such changes
 
Perrotta suggests that in times of real trouble, extremism trumps logic and dialogue becomes meaningless. Read as a metaphor for the social and political splintering of American society after 9/11, it’s a chillingly accurate diagnosis.
 
It is the portions of “The Leftovers” where Mr. Perrotta avoids the more cartoony and melodramatic aspects of his story (having to do with the Sudden Departure and the Guilty Remnant) that are by far the most persuasive. And it is these same sections that showcase his gifts as a novelist: his talent for depicting the ordinary (as opposed to metaphoric or supernatural); his affectionate but astringent understanding of his characters and their imperfections; his appreciation of the dark undertow of loss that lurks beneath the familiar, glossy surface of suburban life.
 
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For Nina and Luke
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Laurie Garvey hadn't been raised to believe in the Rapture.
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"Is there anything else you want to know? It's kind of a relief to tell you about it."

Nora knew what she meant. As distressing as it was to learn the details of Doug's affair, it also felt therapeutic, as if a missing chunk of the past were being returned to her.

"Just one thing. Did he ever talk about me?"

Kylie rolled her eyes. "Only all the time."

"Really?"

"Yeah. He always said he loved you."

"You're kidding." Nora couldn't hide her skepticism. "He hardly ever said that to me. Not even when I said it first."

"It was like a ritual. Right after we had sex, he'd get all serious and say, This isn't about me not loving Nora." She uttered these words in a deep, manly voice, not at all like Doug's. "Sometimes I said it along with him. This isn't about me not loving Nora."

"Wow. You must've hated me."

"I didn't hate you," Kylie said. "I was just jealous."

"Jealous?" Nora tried to laugh, but the sound died in her throat. It had been a long time since she'd thought of herself as someone other people could be jealous of. "Why?"

"You had everything, you know? The husband, the house, those beautiful kids. All your friends and your nice clothes, the yoga and the vacations. And I couldn’t even make him forget you when he was in my bed."

Nora closed her eyes. Doug had been foggy in her mind for a long time, but all at once he was clear again. She could see him lying beside Kylie, naked and smug after fucking her, earnestly reminding her of his family commitments, his enduring love for his wife, letting her know that she could only have so much, and nothing more.

"He didn't care for me," Nora explained. "He just couldn’t stand to see you happy."
Whern your words are futile, you are better off keeping them to yourself, or never even thinking them in the first place.
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What would happen if The Rapture actually took place and millions of people just disappeared from the earth? How would normal people respond? The residents of Mapleton use a variety of coping mechanisms in this thought-provoking novel about love, connection, and loss.… (more)

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