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The Green Road by Anne Enright
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The Green Road (2015)

by Anne Enright

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4863821,119 (3.67)115
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» See also 115 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 38 (next | show all)
Lacked cohesiveness. ( )
  bigorangecat | Jan 24, 2017 |
This is a good book to read during the holiday season, as it's structured around a family (which sometimes gathers for Christmas and sometimes doesn't) and their struggles both with each other and with their lives outside the family. While not always heartwarming, many of the themes touched on would be familiar to those who struggle with older family members and younger ones who live at distance. ( )
  wagner.sarah35 | Dec 30, 2016 |
I liked the first half and LOVED the second half when the kids are grown up and visit their mother on a Very Significant Christmas. Fantastic writing and characterization, especially Dan and Constance. ( )
  laurenbufferd | Nov 14, 2016 |
I liked this quite a lot -- I'm not always crazy about Anne Enright's work, but The Green Road really worked for me. The characters were all fully fleshed-out--I thought Dan and Constance were particularly well handled--and the second half of the book manages to have both an elegiac quality and a shot of sly humor. And as always with Enright, the writing is beautifully elegant. ( )
  gayla.bassham | Nov 7, 2016 |
A very enjoyable book about family and fuck-ups. You really do fall for all the characters, despite their (not inconsiderable) flaws, and want everything to turn out all right. At first I was disappointed that we didn't learn more about the Madigans' matriarch, who only really comes alive at the end of the book - but perhaps this is intentional, allowing us to see her as her children do, with a life lived we know little about. It also invites the reader to make up their own minds whether her complaints about her family are justified or not. Would definitely recommend. ( )
  alexrichman | Oct 27, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 38 (next | show all)
The novel's form beautifully embodies its theme. Since it is concerned with breakages and splits, it begins by presenting us with one of Rosaleen's quarrelling children at a time, a chapter for each.
 
Enright withholds closure but doesn’t skimp on pleasure. Barely a page goes by without a striking phrase or insight. She convinces you of her setting, whether it’s west Africa or the East Village. The sons’ stories, unfolding farther afield, are story-driven; the energy in the daughters’ stories comes from the texture of experience (a supermarket run; half-cut on vodka).
 
The characters are so finely realised that they seem continuous: we feel the pressures on Emmet as coming from the long past, part of the air he breathes; we understand that the absence of all three of Constance’s siblings is an unspoken part of her homemaking; most extraordinary of all, we experience Dan’s gaps and distance as part of his character, his distance from himself. It is not much like a novel, but it is a lot like knowing people; an awful lot like being alive.
 
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Later, after Hanna made some cheese on toast, her mother came in the kitchen and filled a hot water bottle from the big kettle on the range.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0393248216, Hardcover)

A major new novel from the winner of the Man Booker Prize.

Spanning thirty years and three continents, The Green Road tells the story of Rosaleen, matriarch of the Madigan family, and her four children.

Ardeevin, County Clare, Ireland. 1980. When her oldest brother Dan announces he will enter the priesthood, young Hanna watches her mother howl in agony and retreat to her room. In the years that follow, the Madigan children leave one by one: Dan for the frenzy of New York under the shadow of AIDS; Constance for a hospital in Limerick, where petty antics follow simple tragedy; Emmet for the backlands of Mali, where he learns the fragility of love and order; and Hanna for modern-day Dublin and the trials of her own motherhood. When Christmas Day reunites the children under one roof, each confronts the terrible weight of family ties and the journey that brought them home. The Green Road is a major work of fiction about the battles we wage for family, faith, and love.

“Enright’s razor-sharp writing turns every ordinary detail into a weapon, to create a story that cuts right to the bone.”—New York Review of Books

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:02:15 -0400)

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