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To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
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To the Lighthouse (1927)

by Virginia Woolf

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Showing 1-5 of 136 (next | show all)
Well, this was good. I was able to judge the book by the thoughts of a girl who visited an island for a number of years with her family. I felt her emotions and experienced her environment by reading her mind. Superb writing. ( )
  JVioland | Jul 14, 2014 |
Mr. and Mrs. Ramsay their eight children and their friends are gathered at their summer home. Six-year-old James hopes for a sail out to the lighthouse across the bay are dashed by his father’s sudden announcement that the weather will be bad and they will not go. He not only pronounces this with a sarcastic grin “but also with some secret conceit at his own accuracy of judgement.” With this scene Woolf begins her lyrical psychological portrait of family dynamics, life, death, and loss told through the thoughts of her characters. The Ramsays are upper middle class English vacationing in Scotland before the outbreak of the Great War. Mr. Ramsay is a tyrannical and insecure academic with little care or feeling for how his behavior affects others. It is up to the beautiful and sensitive Mrs. Ramsay to make and preserve the peace. When, a decade later, the family gathers again at the house she is gone, and they must cope without her and come to terms with their own sense of loss and the impermanence of life. Implicit in the novel is Woolf’s sharp critique of traditional male and female sex roles. ( )
  MaowangVater | Jul 9, 2014 |
Dear Goodreads, please let us give books a 'half' star!!! This is 2.5.

As an experienced reader, every now and then, I come across a book that is complex and difficult to read. This is that book. I felt like I think my students feel when they read and then tell me "I don't get it." Usually I tell them that they weren't paying enough attention, but, after reading several reviews of this book, in which most people say "I had to re-read several parts to understand." I don't feel upset that it was confusing. I myself felt no need to re read anything in this novel.

( )
  csweder | Jul 8, 2014 |
Dear Goodreads, please let us give books a 'half' star!!! This is 2.5.

As an experienced reader, every now and then, I come across a book that is complex and difficult to read. This is that book. I felt like I think my students feel when they read and then tell me "I don't get it." Usually I tell them that they weren't paying enough attention, but, after reading several reviews of this book, in which most people say "I had to re-read several parts to understand." I don't feel upset that it was confusing. I myself felt no need to re read anything in this novel.

( )
  csweder | Jul 8, 2014 |
Not my usual type of read, but I'm so glad I risked it. This really is the perfect book for those feeling depressed and overwhelmed. The language is stunning. Even though nothing much really "happens", I found the mundanity deeply comforting. The Ramsey family and various friends are spending summer at their island home. Written as stream of consciousness, we see their deepest thoughts and feelings. I found myself compelled to read to the end to discover will they go to the lighthouse.

I read the Wordsworth Classics edition which had an interesting introduction to some of the themes in the book. The added endnotes were a little odd - they seemed to explain things which were obvious and leave you on your own with more obscure references. ( )
  eclecticdodo | May 23, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 136 (next | show all)
How was it that, this time, everything in the book fell so completely into place? How could I have missed it - above all, the patterns, the artistry - the first time through? How could I have missed the resonance of Mr Ramsay's Tennyson quotation, coming as it does like a prophecy of the first world war? How could I not have grasped that the person painting and the one writing were in effect the same? ("Women can't write, women can't paint..." ) And the way time passes over everything like a cloud, and solid objects flicker and dissolve? And the way Lily's picture of Mrs Ramsay - incomplete, insufficient, doomed to be stuck in an attic - becomes, as she adds the one line that ties it all together at the end, the book we've just read?
 
"To the Lighthouse" has not the formal perfection, the cohesiveness, the intense vividness of characterization that belong to "Mrs. Dalloway." It has particles of failure in it. It is inferior to "Mrs. Dalloway" in the degree to which its aims are achieved; it is superior in the magnitude of the aims themselves. For in its portrayal of life that is less orderly, more complex and so much doomed to frustration, it strikes a more important note, and it gives us an interlude of vision that must stand at the head of all Virginia Woolf's work.
 

» Add other authors (360 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Woolf, Virginiaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fiedeldij Dop, JoTranslatormain authorsome editionsconfirmed
Alfsen, MereteTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bertolucci, AttilioForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Celenza, GiuliaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dunmore, HelenIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fastrová, JarmilaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fischer, PaulCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hoffman, AliceIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Holliday, TerenceIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kaila, KaiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mathias, RobertCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Munck, IngalisaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Welty, EudoraIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"Yes, of course, if it's fine tomorrow," said Mrs. Ramsay. "But you'll have to be up with the lark," she added.
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She was thinking how all those paths and the lawn, tick and knotted with the lives they had lived there, were gone: were rubbed out; were past; were unreal, and now this was real
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0156907399, Paperback)

“Radiant as [To the Lighthouse] is in its beauty, there could never be a mistake about it: here is a novel to the last degree severe and uncompromising. I think that beyond being about the very nature of reality, it is itself a vision of reality.”—Eudora Welty, from the Introduction

 

The serene and maternal Mrs. Ramsay, the tragic yet absurd Mr. Ramsay, and their children and assorted guests are on holiday on the Isle of Skye. From the seemingly trivial postponement of a visit to a nearby lighthouse, Woolf constructs a remarkable, moving examination of the complex tensions and allegiances of family life and the conflict between men and women.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:22:02 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

At their holiday home in Cornwall, a distant lighthouse holds a haunting attraction for the members of an Edwardian family as disillusionment, turmoil, and a world on the brink of war plague the family's relationships.

» see all 19 descriptions

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Audible.com

Four editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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Penguin Australia

Three editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141183411, 0141194812, 0141198516

Urban Romantics

Two editions of this book were published by Urban Romantics.

Editions: 1909175676, 190917548X

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