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The end of Alice by A. M. Homes
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The end of Alice (original 1996; edition 1996)

by A. M. Homes

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9532913,307 (3.73)37
Member:thebookdweeb
Title:The end of Alice
Authors:A. M. Homes
Info:New York : Scribner, c1996.
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:Disturbing, prisoners, molestation, murder

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The End of Alice by A. M. Homes (1996)

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English (27)  Dutch (2)  All languages (29)
Showing 1-5 of 27 (next | show all)
Only a work of such searing, meticulously controlled brilliance could provoke such a wide range of visceral responses. Here is the incredible story of an imprisoned pedophile who is drawn into an erotically charged correspondence with a nineteen-year-old suburban coed. As the two reveal -- and revel in -- their obsessive desires, Homes creates in The End of Alice a novel that is part romance, part horror story, at once unnerving and seductive.
  Cultural_Attache | Jul 27, 2018 |
When I told my roommate what this novel was all about, she gave me a look filled with disgust and said "I have no idea how you can stomach reading this kind of stuff." In all honesty, I get that look a lot. I don't always read books that are "normal" or "safe". It's not as if I hunt for books that deal with disturbing content, but if I find one and I think the premise is interesting, then I will definitely give it a shot. I think that books dealing with topics that are controversial make you think differently, and it can be useful to hone that ability. Anyways, this is one of those books that is sexual and graphic in nature, so consider this a warning: this book is not for the faint of heart!

My synopsis itself will be brief: This is a story about a pedophile in prison who begins to receive letters from a 19-year old girl who lives in the suburbs. She plans to follow in our pedophile prisoner's footsteps and her letters are erotically charged, showing the way in which she seduces and claims her victim - a 12-year-old boy. The prisoner, on his end, uses this as an opportunity to live vicariously through the girl's actions and recall his own dalliances with little girls.

So. This novel was definitely erotic and it will definitely make you feel uncomfortable. That being said, the prose was not my favorite thing. There were long rambling passages that bored me to tears, and I ended up skimming most of the novel in order to focus on the plot. Most of what was said was unnecessary; this book could definitely have been written in fewer pages/chapters. I thought the letter writing concept was cool and was hoping that the author would actually write out the whole letter for the reader to see. But no, instead we get the pedophile inserting certain parts of the letter, while summarizing the rest; it is also clear that his "summary" isn't just composed of whatever the girl has written but also what he himself has imagined is happening. That was a bit disappointing, as I would have liked to read it from her perspective instead. The overall concept of this novel was interesting but the actual writing of it left me disappointed. If you are expecting something thrilling or shocking, then don't go for this novel; other than making you feel uncomfortable at times, it doesn't do much else. ( )
1 vote veeshee | Jan 29, 2018 |
It feels weird to give a book like this, one with such a horrible subject matter, a five star rating -- but the truth is, Homes did such an excellent job with this. Homes never once shies away from the grotesque, but she never over does it either. There's enough to make anyone squeamish, to be certain, but it's like watching a trainwreck happen; no matter how bitingly, realistically terrible things get (and they do, often), there's a desperate need to see the whole truth of things unearthed. I feel that most people wouldn't be able to stomach this book, but it's fascinatingly disturbing and disgusting insightful, in the best of ways, and definitely worth a read. ( )
2 vote majesdane | Aug 8, 2017 |
Let's just say that all the descriptions of vaginas made me happy I'm gay and not straight. ( )
1 vote bo18 | Jan 18, 2016 |
The blurb of this book initially caught my attention, but by the time I was halfway through, I was sure I'd be too disgusted to finish. It is graphic, yes, but once I read past that to the underlying emotional story, I was hooked. The end of the book was absolutely amazing. After reading the final sentence, I had to sit back and let it all sink in. My mind needed time to absorb the details, untangle the web, and completely enjoy the story that had just been told to me. This book is unforgettable. ( )
1 vote howifeelaboutbooks | Nov 4, 2015 |
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A stopped clock is right twice a day. -Lewis Carroll
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For William
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Who is she that she should have this afflicted addiction, this oddly acquired taste for the freshest of flesh, to tell a story that will start some of you smirking and smiling, but that will leave others set afire determined this nightmare, this horror, must stop.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0684827107, Paperback)

The narrator is Chappy, a pedophile who's been locked up in Sing Sing for 23 years. The tale alternates between Chappy's own story (both outside and inside of prison), and letters he receives from a 19-year-old girl who knows of Alice's fate and wants to start playing with 12-year-old boys. The girl's letters disturb Chappy, bringing his memories vividly to the fore. In prose that is both lyrical and horrifyingly direct, A.M. "Amy" Homes takes us into the minds of the correspondents. Chappy is bright, analytical, and reminiscent of Nabokov in the way he talks about his "Lolita." But the sex is graphic and often bizarre, and the author's tone is chilly, so it's not a book to be picked up lightly. As Daphne Merkin writes in the New York Times, it's a "splashy, not particularly likable book whose best moments are quietly observed and whose underlying themes are more serious than prurient."

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:23 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

A novel narrated by a Humbert Humbert-like character, Chappy, a voyeur and murderer with a taste for young girls, who corresponds with a college student who has a passion for young boys.

(summary from another edition)

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