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Brooklyn: A Novel by Colm Toibin

Brooklyn: A Novel (edition 2010)

by Colm Toibin

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,9652121,932 (3.7)414
Title:Brooklyn: A Novel
Authors:Colm Toibin
Info:Scribner (2010), Edition: 1st, Paperback, 272 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:apt, fic

Work details

Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín

  1. 60
    A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith (kiwiflowa)
  2. 72
    'Tis, a Memoir by Frank McCourt (bergs47)
  3. 30
    Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann (Othemts)
  4. 10
    The Empty Family: Stories by Colm Tóibín (Christy.)
  5. 10
    Lucy Gayheart by Willa Cather (pacocillero)
  6. 10
    Someone by Alice McDermott (Ciruelo)
  7. 00
    The Walk Home by Rachel Seiffert (charl08)
  8. 11
    The Walking People by Mary Beth Keane (JGoto)
    JGoto: Irish immigrants with emphasis on family, but the story is more complex.
  9. 00
    Ellis Island by Kate Kerrigan (DubaiReader)
  10. 00
    Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok (jayne_charles)
  11. 01
    Heaven and Hell by Jón Kalman Stefánsson (anglemark)
    anglemark: There's something about the laconic prose and the description of a young person's plight that made me associate these two books with each other.
  12. 01
    Lila by Marilynne Robinson (charl08)
    charl08: In both novels, key character faces new, difficult choices in new places. Both beautifully written, compelling.

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» See also 414 mentions

English (201)  Spanish (3)  Finnish (2)  Swedish (1)  Dutch (1)  Norwegian (1)  Catalan (1)  German (1)  All languages (211)
Showing 1-5 of 201 (next | show all)
This is three and a half stars. The writing is beautiful, but I grew annoyed with the heroine's decisions and actions; there seemed to be directions that were opened up and not followed; and the ending seemed incomplete and inconclusive. ( )
  SaschaD | Apr 28, 2016 |
Colm Toibin lulls the reader into a false sense of security in the first part of Brooklyn with his understated way of writing. However, the dilemma that Eilis Lacey comes to face when she returns home to Ireland from Brooklyn completely grabbed my attention. A wonderful story of coming of age. ( )
  sianpr | Apr 24, 2016 |
Almost a mirror image of Nora Webster, here is the portrait of a young woman whose behaviour is moulded so completely by the expectations of those around her that those expectations become her reality. The writing is sparse and objective yet gets the reader fully inside Eilis's head. Plot is kept to the bare minimum - as seems the usual with Toibin. 9 April 2016. ( )
  alanca | Apr 12, 2016 |
This book is a snooze. I tried twice to get through it. I heard the movie adaptation was good. ( )
  ghefferon | Apr 5, 2016 |
I enjoy immigration stories and I enjoy reading about Ireland, so this novel about a young woman coming to America should have been right up my alley. And it was, to an extent. It was a lovely story, well written for the most part. The problem for me is that it felt too thin. There was just not the depth and complexity I expected. It did nothing to set itself apart from too many other immigration stories. In the end, it was a pleasant but easily forgettable story. ( )
  TooBusyReading | Apr 4, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 201 (next | show all)
Ultimately, Brooklyn does not feel limited. Tóibín makes a single incision, but it’s extraordinarily well-placed and strikes against countless nerve-ends. The novel is a compassionate reminder that a city must be made of people before it can be made of myths.
In tracking the experience, at the remove of half a century, of a girl as unsophisticated and simple as Eilis — a girl who permits herself no extremes of temperament, who accords herself no right to self-assertion — Toibin exercises sustained subtlety and touching respect. . .

In “Brooklyn,” Colm Toibin quietly, modestly shows how place can assert itself, enfolding the visitor, staking its claim.
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Eilis Lacey, sitting at the window of the upstairs living room in the house on Friary Street, noticed her sister walking briskly from work.
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Brooklyn, is set in Brooklyn and Ireland in the early 1950s, when one young woman crosses the ocean to make a new life for herself.

Eilis Lacey has come of age in small-town Ireland in the years following World War Two. Though skilled at bookkeeping, she cannot find a job in the miserable Irish economy. When an Irish priest from Brooklyn offers to sponsor Eilis in America -- to live and work in a Brooklyn neighborhood "just like Ireland" -- she decides she must go, leaving her fragile mother and her charismatic sister behind.

Eilis finds work in a department store on Fulton Street, and when she least expects it, finds love. Tony, a blond Italian from a big family, slowly wins her over with patient charm. He takes Eilis to Coney Island and Ebbets Field, and home to dinner in the two-room apartment he shares with his brothers and parents. He talks of having children who are Dodgers fans. But just as Eilis begins to fall in love with Tony, devastating news from Ireland threatens the promise of her future.
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It is Enniscorthy in the southeast of Ireland in the early 1950s. Eilis Lacey is one among many of her generation who cannot find work at home. Thus when a job is offered in America, it is clear to everyone that she must go.

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