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A Girl is a Half-formed Thing by Eimear…
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A Girl is a Half-formed Thing (2013)

by Eimear McBride

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6924520,267 (3.65)99
Recently added byKatie_Roscher, private library, rena75, SWade0126, ReadingWithRen, Emelle04

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English (44)  Dutch (1)  All languages (45)
Showing 1-5 of 44 (next | show all)
I was so drawn in by the hype around this book, and its style was like nothing I had ever expected. It's a brutal, sad story told in such a unique way, and I found that compelling. However, that same uniqueness also made it very difficult to read and understand from a purely technical standpoint. It was often difficult to discern who was saying what. It felt like reading a very long poem rather than prose. Personally, I need a little more prose in my novels. ( )
  Katie_Roscher | Jan 18, 2019 |
terrible story, beautiful writing. This book makes my feelings conflicted. ( )
  inescapableabby | Nov 28, 2018 |
OMG my brain hurts! A Girl is a Half Formed Thing by Eimear McBride is a stream of consciousness novel that explores some very basic themes, a coming of age story about family relationships and lost innocence. This novel was very difficult to read, both due to content and style of writing. It’s uncompromising, intense and intelligent. I have never hidden the fact that “stream of consciousness’ is not a style that I easily take to but I would say that this author uses this genre to it’s full effect.

The book is a first person monologue given by an unnamed girl growing up in Ireland. The story is full of emotional betrayals and physical abuse. She is the “I” of the story while the “you” is always her disabled brother who suffers from the after affects of brain cancer. Other characters that are referenced are the absent father who abandoned the family, her ranting Catholic mother and her abusive uncle. Her life unfolds in a series of raw, unfliching episodes.

I had to read this book in small helpings as I could feel my eyes start to glaze over after a couple of pages and I would disconnect from the story, luckily this was a fairly short novel that I could read in short bursts. And while I appreciate the stylistic, tortured writing, I cannot totally applaud it as reading it was such a struggle. A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing is certainly unique and deserves our attention, but not a book that I appreciated or enjoyed. ( )
  DeltaQueen50 | Nov 6, 2018 |
I recognize that this a well-crafted piece of literature, but it did not work for me. I am duly disappointed in myself. ( )
1 vote GaylaBassham | May 27, 2018 |
This book is wonderfully unusual. The experimental prose adds to the concept of the book as a whole. The girl, the main character, is only on the cusp of figuring out life and where hers is going. The prose creates images in the reader's head without the distraction of dialogue or description. It was a weird experience for me.

This kind of writing is being likened to James Joyce and William Faulkner, but please don't let that deter you. I almost didn't go for this book after reading those comparisons. McBride takes the best of what those two men could do and transforms this type of writing into something that the reader can actually understand.

It took me a while to get used to it. Reading this book was actually a lot of work, and sometimes I was just too tired to give it all the concentration it required, so it took me a while to get through it.

There are a lot of disturbing images and scenes, which I think a lot of reviewers found unnecessarily distasteful, but I think they only add to the development of the main character (or lack thereof, really). The book is really dark, and there is no redemption for anyone. So, if you're one who goes in for happy endings, this isn't it.

The book, for me, was work, but the last two pages made the whole effort worthwhile. The ending was poetry. ( )
  ErickaS | May 2, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 44 (next | show all)
It is a testament to McBride’s erudite yet brazen originality that the novel can thoughtfully speak back to some of the great texts of Western literature, while at the same time reading as though it were created entirely out of thin air.
 
McBride’s language … justifies its strangeness on every page. Her prose is a visceral throb, and the sentences run meanings together to produce a kind of compression in which words, freed from the tedious march of sequence, seem to want to merge with one another, as paint and musical notes can. The results are thrilling, and also thrillingly efficient.
added by Widsith | editThe New Yorker, James Wood (Sep 29, 2014)
 
"Formidable," in both its meanings, best sums it up: This is a novel that initially intimidates, but after we have adapted to McBride's rhythms, its creative and emotional power renders us awe-struck.…This is brave, dizzying, risk-taking fiction of the highest order.
added by Widsith | editStar Tribune, Malcolm Forbes (Sep 20, 2014)
 
“A Girl” subjects the outer language the world expects of us to the inner syntaxes that are natural to our minds, and in doing so refuses to equate universal experience with universal expression — a false religion that has oppressed most contemporary literature, and most contemporary souls.
 
“A Girl Is a Half-formed Thing” is an extraordinarily demanding novel that will fascinate dozens of American readers.…You either let this strange novel teach you how to read it and grow accustomed to its impressionistic voice, or you suffer through what feels like a migraine in print. But I’m not convinced that pride of endurance is sufficient reward for completing “A Girl Is a Half-formed Thing.”
 
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For Donagh McBride
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For you. You'll soon. You'll give her name.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0957185324, Paperback)

Eimear McBride's novel tells the story of a young woman's relationship with her brother who is living with the after effects of a brain tunour. Not so much a stream of consciousness, as an unconscious railing against a life that makes little sense, and a shocking and intimate insight into the thoughts, feelings and sensual urges of a vulnerable and isolated protagonist, to read A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing is to plunge inside its narrator's head, experiencing her world first-hand. This isn't always comfortable - but it is always a revelation.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:10:36 -0400)

Eimear McBride's novel tells the story of a young woman's relationship with her brother who is living with the after effects of a brain tumour. Not so much a stream of consciousness, as an unconscious railing against a life that makes little sense, and a shocking and intimate insight into the thoughts, feelings and sensual urges of a vulnerable and isolated protagonist, to read A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing is to plunge inside its narrator's head, experiencing her world first-hand.… (more)

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