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Carry the One: A Novel by Carol Anshaw
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Carry the One: A Novel (edition 2012)

by Carol Anshaw

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5054320,141 (3.46)18
Member:RandyMetcalfe
Title:Carry the One: A Novel
Authors:Carol Anshaw
Info:Simon & Schuster (2012), Paperback, 288 pages
Collections:Read in 2013, Your library
Rating:****
Tags:home, r2013

Work details

Carry the One: A Novel by Carol Anshaw

  1. 00
    The Woman Upstairs by Claire Messud (jayne_charles)
    jayne_charles: Not many parallels between these two books plot-wise, but they had a strikingly similar tone and while reading one I was constantly reminded of the other.
  2. 00
    Aquamarine by Carol Anshaw (DanieXJ)
    DanieXJ: Both of these Carol Anshaw books take a look at life from a variety of points of view and yet have a plot throughout as well and don't get lost in the philosophizing.
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» See also 18 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 43 (next | show all)
Very well done in terms of writing style and choices, and the concept was interesting. This book follows several people who all feel that they participated in the accidental death of a child. The single night of her death haunts them for twenty years; each handles that event in different ways.
It was very difficult over the first 100 pages and even at points later to remember who was who, though. I struggled to keep track of the individuals, their histories, and the tracks of their lives. That was particularly annoying as I got further into the book. But in the end, I was glad to have read this. ( )
  Laine-Cunningham | Feb 22, 2015 |
more than 2.5 stars, but not 3. i came to this book hoping and expecting to love it, or at least really, really like it. so, while i didn't dislike it, i still come away disappointed. parts of it are wonderful, and written so well - i paused and reread more than a few lines along the way. and then other parts just fall so short for me, or don't ring true (mostly in the characters' dialogues). and then as a whole, the thread she uses to tie the story and the characters together wasn't quite firm enough. in theory it is, but in execution it doesn't completely work for me. still, i like the characters she's created and i enjoyed spending time with some of them, even as i sometimes wanted more from their creator.

one of the lines i really liked: "She could now go about living a life with only a shadow of Maude lying softly across some edge of her." ( )
  elisa.saphier | Jan 29, 2014 |
Joy's review: What a thought and emotion provoking book! What is forgiveness? Are some things unforgiveable? What do we 'owe' our family? Can events tie us together forever? All these deep questions AND it's very well written; Anshaw has great descriptive power. ( )
  konastories | Oct 21, 2013 |
This novel is structured in a similar way to David Nicholls’ “One Day” – a story that moves forward in time with each chapter, and captures the characters at a particular moment in their lives. In this case however there is a wider cast of characters, and the time leaps are less precise. Any chronological pointers you have to hang on to for dear life for they are doled out sparingly. I did find the brevity of the sections hard to deal with – I found myself wanting to know more, for these were all interesting and well rounded characters. What does help however is the excellent writing – here is an author who extracts high work rate from every word.

I would perhaps have liked a bit more detail about what people looked like earlier on in the story as it was hard to separate them without this basic information, but it’s a minor gripe. This is a very intelligent and well written investigation of the business of guilt, addiction, family, relationships and lesbianism in startlingly tactile form. It’s not quite “One Day” but it’s close. ( )
  jayne_charles | Aug 8, 2013 |
I am going to echo several other reviewers--this book had lots of promise. The opening scene with the wedding and accident was very well written. I thought that everyone was going to "carry" the girl with them...and then years pass with no mention or thought of the girl. After the initial introduction, I found the characters to be annoying with limited guilt or even thoughts about previous events--as if they hit a cat, not a 10 year old girl. Maybe it gets better later on but I don't think I can finish the book.
  walterqchocobo | Apr 8, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 43 (next | show all)
Carol Anshaw's superb Carry the One opens in 1983, with a wedding and a tragedy in quick succession. The wedding of Carmen and Matt is a pleasantly raucous affair, held outdoors at a bohemian farm in rural Wisconsin. Folk songs are loudly sung, and as a pleasant haze of alcohol and pot permeates the evening, Carmen hopes, with only a little apprehension, "to sit out this early phase of her marriage, the mortifying dances segment".....
added by marq | editThe Guardian, Patrick Ness (Oct 26, 2012)
 
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Epigraph
On the night came undone like a party dress And fell at her feet in a beautiful mess. - "Barroom Girls" Gillian Welch/David Rawlings
Dedication
In memory of Dog Stanley 1948-2004
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So Carmen was married, just.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
Carry the One begins in the hours following Carmen's wedding reception, when a car filled with stoned, drunk, and sleepy guests accidentally hits and kills a girl on a dark country road. For the next twenty-five years those involved, including Carmen and her brother and sister, connect and disconnect and reconnect with one another and their victim. As one character says, "When you add us up, you always have to carry the one." Through friendships and love affairs; marriages and divorce; parenthood, holidays, and the modest tragedies and joys of ordinary days, Carry the One shows how one life affects another and how those who thrive and those who self-destruct are closer to one another than we'd expect. (ARC)
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When a car of inebriated guests from Carmen's wedding hits and kills a girl on a country road, Carmen and the people involved in the accident connect, disconnect and reconnect throughout 25 subsequent years of marriage, parenthood, holidays and tragedies.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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Tantor Media

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