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The gathering by Anne enright
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The gathering (2007)

by Anne enright

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3,0551591,854 (3.05)338
Member:mary.mchale
Title:The gathering
Authors:Anne enright
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The Gathering by Anne Enright (2007)

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English (150)  Dutch (4)  German (2)  Swedish (1)  Hebrew (1)  All languages (158)
Showing 1-5 of 150 (next | show all)
What a strange strange novel. I find it difficult to believe that this is a Booker Prize winner (I hold this prize in very high esteem, but I am afraid this time it let me down). I found the narrator's preoccupation with sex (especially her own family's) and genitals rather disturbing. Almost the entire first half of the novel involves her imagining how her grandparents met and did or didn't shag! And if that isn't enough, at one point she thinks about her dead baby brother and imagines how he is having little cherub sex in heaven - umm, icky!

Occasionally there is a glimpse at the kind of book this could have been (and I suppose why it won the booker prize), when Enright delivers the most beautiful and powerful prose. However, this is few and far between. As for the plot, well, it is nothing new. Why would a man grow up to be a damaged alcoholic? Take a guess and you will probably be right.
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  tashlyn88 | Feb 5, 2016 |
This book went nowhere. The characters were underdeveloped, the plot went in circles, and while certain sentences were beautiful or evocative- ultimately, the author deliberately contradicted or backed away from saying anything definitive about... anything. ( )
  lovelypenny | Feb 4, 2016 |
A book club selection. Very dark. I could not finish ( )
  ellenuw | Jan 27, 2016 |
his is a book group read.
That is the only reason I finished it.
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I found it a very tedious, out in left field read, and generally strange.
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Our angry, self-centered heroine (? on that term) was a bit too much at times.
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I don't claim to know anything about writing style ....so if you find the redeeming qualities that I've missed in this MAN BOOKER PRIZE winner, share them with me.
  pennsylady | Jan 22, 2016 |
After the death of one of their siblings, Liam, the remaining members of the large Hegarty family gather at their mother's house in Ireland for his wake and funeral. The novel is narrated by Liam's sister, Veronica, who was closest to him. Most of the book consists of Veronica trying to make sense of her family's past in order to solve her own identity crisis; however, since she can only speculate about much of her family's history, neither the reader nor Veronica can really know what is true and what is imagined.

There wasn't a lot of action here as most of the novel revolved around the inner workings of Veronica's mind. I didn't really like most of the book, but somewhere in the last hundred pages or so, I finally understood what had happened to Veronica and Liam (and possibly other members of the family) that they had both repressed for so long and that raised so many questions in their lives. There's really a lot lurking between the lines in this story, but I just wasn't interested enough until the end to bother searching that deeply for it. It was just a case of too little, too late for me. ( )
  AmandaL. | Jan 16, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 150 (next | show all)
At its best Enright's prose style is excitingly original, a blend of defensive social satire with extreme precision in evoking sounds, smells, and atmosphere and a great ability to make rapid and telling transitions from past to present, concrete to abstract, narrative to reflection. However, these qualities emerge for the most part in sections peripheral to the main story.... When, on the other hand, she slides into melodrama and literary formula, The Gathering does indeed sound like at least nine other writers and by no means the best.
added by jburlinson | editNew York Review of Books, Tim Parks (pay site) (Apr 17, 2008)
 
Her prose often ravishes and sometimes repels: reading her can be like staring into the lustrous surface of a lake, trying to discern the dangers lurking beneath. . . Bringing together the skills she has honed along the way, Enright carries off her illusions without props or dei ex machina, bravely engaging with the carnival horrors of everyday life.
 
added by lucyknows | editscis (pay site)
 

» Add other authors (9 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Anne Enrightprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Verhagen, PietTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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I would like to write down what happened in my grandmother's house the summer I was eight or nine, but I am not sure if it really did happen. I need to bear witness to an uncertain event. I feel it roaring inside me--this thing that may not have taken place. I don't even know what name to put on it. I think you might call it a crime of the flesh, but the flesh is long fallen away and I am not sure what hurt may linger in the bones.
Quotations
…I was living my life in inverted commas. I could pick up my keys and go ‘home’ where I could ‘have sex’ with my ‘husband’ just like lots of other people did. That is what I had been doing for years. And I didn’t seem to mind the inverted commas, or even notice that I was living in them, until my brother died.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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This is The Gathering by Anne Enright. It should not be combined with The Gathering by Joseph Lidster.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0802170390, Paperback)

Amazon Significant Seven, November 2007: Pretty early on in The Gathering you realize that in her lingering portrait of the Hegarty clan (and this isn't hyperbole--they are a family of 12), Irish novelist Anne Enright will wrestle with all the giant literary tropes that have come before her. Family, of course, is the big one, but with equal intensity she explores death and dying, the sea and its siren song, sex, shame, secrecy, unreliable memories, madness, "the drink," and--always in the shadows--England. That said, it's not like any other novel about the Irish that I've read. The story of the Hegartys is indeed bleak, and hard, but it surges with tenderness and eloquent thought which, in the end, are the very things that help this family (or at least her narrator Veronica) survive. Through her eyes, and in Enright's skillful imagination, those small turning-point moments of life that we all know in some form or another--a petty fight, a careless word, an event witnessed--come together in an unshakeable vision of how you become the person you are. --Anne Bartholomew

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:48 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

As nine members of the Hegarty clan gather for the wake of their drowned brother Liam, his sister Veronica remembers the secret he shared with her about what happened in their grandmother's house thirty years ago, a betrayal that spans three generations. "The nine surviving children of the Hegarty clan are gathering in Dublin for the wake of their wayward brother, Liam, drowned in the sea. His sister, Veronica, collects the body and keeps the dead man company, guarding the secret she shares with him - something that happened in their grandmother's house in the winter of 1968. As Enright traces the line of betrayal and redemption through three generations, she shows how memories warp and secrets fester."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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