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To Paradise: A Novel by Hanya Yanagihara
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To Paradise: A Novel (original 2022; edition 2022)

by Hanya Yanagihara (Author)

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9111922,929 (3.74)18
Spanning three centuries and three different versions of the American experiment, an unforgettable cast of characters are united by their reckonings with the qualities that make us human--fear, love, shame, need, and loneliness. "In an alternate version of 1893 America, New York is part of the Free States, where people may live and love whomever they please (or so it seems). The fragile young scion of a distinguished family resists betrothal to a worthy suitor, drawn to a charming music teacher of no means. In a 1993 Manhattan besieged by the AIDS epidemic, a young Hawaiian man lives with his much older, wealthier partner, hiding his troubled childhood and the fate of his father. And in 2093, in a world riven by plagues and governed by totalitarian rule, a powerful scientist's damaged granddaughter tries to navigate life without him--and solve the mystery of her husband's disappearances. These three sections are joined in an enthralling and ingenious symphony, as recurring notes and themes deepen and enrich one another: A townhouse in Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village; illness, and treatments that come at a terrible cost; wealth and squalor; the weak and the strong; race; the definition of family, and of nationhood; the dangerous righteousness of the powerful, and of revolutionaries; the longing to find a place in an earthly paradise, and the gradual realization that it can't exist. What unites not just the characters, but these Americas, are their reckonings with the qualities that make us human: Fear. Love. Shame. Need. Loneliness''--Dust jacket flap.… (more)
Member:elhtfiction
Title:To Paradise: A Novel
Authors:Hanya Yanagihara (Author)
Info:Doubleday (2022), Edition: First Edition, 720 pages
Collections:Your library
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To Paradise by Hanya Yanagihara (2022)

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» See also 18 mentions

English (17)  Catalan (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (19)
Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
I listed to this book on Audible.

This novel is more like 2 novels and a novella. It consists of three books that each take place a century apart starting late 1800s. They are alternate US histories and a dystopic future. This book is long and paced and dark and sad. It's an investment in time and emotional energy and it's worth it. Each Book is a story of someone seeking love and acceptance in societies that don't support them. Each society is different yet somehow none of the version manages to include and accept everyone. Ultimately people choose the hope of love and a potential paradise over the safety and a lonely existence. The last Book is the longest and best. The last 3 hours were simply gut wrenching and devastating to listen to.

It is interesting the novel was written before COVID. She nailed it. ( )
  technodiabla | Feb 7, 2024 |
Buckle up, readers, because "To Paradise" takes you on a wild ride through three alternate Americas like it's a literary theme park. In this book, Hanya Yanagihara serves up an ingenious masterpiece of prose, emotion, and morally gray characters that leaves you questioning reality more than a philosophical cat with an existential crisis.

In a world where history zigzags like a caffeinated snake, we get three tales. One set in an alternate 1893, where New York is a free-for-all of love and rebellion; a 1993 Manhattan dancing with the shadows of the AIDS epidemic; and a 2093 dystopia ruled by plagues and totalitarian regimes. It's like a buffet of alternate realities, and trust me, the chef knows how to serve up variety.

Pros:
( )
  pools_of_words | Jan 30, 2024 |
I had rather high expectations due to A Little Life and despite People in the Trees. This three-in-one package was a bit of this and a bit of that, but the whole was not more than it's parts. I liked the first and the last book, for different reasons, but the mid-section was not for me and I took a break and read 10 books in between before I continued reading this one. That, of course, didn't help, but I had another difficult reading project at the same time which pushed me to finish this one. I would have enjoyed reading books 1 and 3 separately, but as a whole this is barely 3 stars. I like the writing and the style, but perhaps the story just wasn't for me or I was in the wrong book at the wrong time. ( )
  Iira | Dec 9, 2023 |
So Much Promise, But Didn't Deliver. I preordered this book back in April 2021 - that's how excited I was about this book. I loved A Little Life. The book is broken up into 3 parts, all of which are based in the same Washington Square building with the main characters all sharing the same names in all three parts. I'll make this quick because it s 700 page book.

Part one is by far the best of the three with characters I actually cared about and an excellent story. The book then takes a massive dive in part two with a story that meanders with characters that I had no interest in getting to know or care about. It makes a very small recovery in part three but not enough to bring up my rating.

One of the really big problems I had was the uber-long letters that the author uses to move the story along. When I say uber-long, I'm talking about pages and pages and pages long. The use of a letter isn't a bad idea, and has its place. But to use it as often as she does and as long as she wrote them, simply made me lose interest very quickly and I wound up flipping ahead. Once I start doing this, I know that the book needs to end.

I was really disappointed with this book. I was so looking forward to this being not just a good book, but a great one. Unfortunately, it didn't even reach the "good" level. ( )
  BenM2023 | Nov 22, 2023 |
3 stars (for the last story).
The writing/prose for the whole book is fabulous.
However I found the first story too ‘try hard’, the second laboured, but I think the third saved it - despite its bleak and somewhat realistic (maybe?) vision of the future. ( )
  JennyPocknall | Oct 19, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 17 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Yanagihara, Hanyaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Limburg, IngerTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rooijen, Lucie vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Spanning three centuries and three different versions of the American experiment, an unforgettable cast of characters are united by their reckonings with the qualities that make us human--fear, love, shame, need, and loneliness. "In an alternate version of 1893 America, New York is part of the Free States, where people may live and love whomever they please (or so it seems). The fragile young scion of a distinguished family resists betrothal to a worthy suitor, drawn to a charming music teacher of no means. In a 1993 Manhattan besieged by the AIDS epidemic, a young Hawaiian man lives with his much older, wealthier partner, hiding his troubled childhood and the fate of his father. And in 2093, in a world riven by plagues and governed by totalitarian rule, a powerful scientist's damaged granddaughter tries to navigate life without him--and solve the mystery of her husband's disappearances. These three sections are joined in an enthralling and ingenious symphony, as recurring notes and themes deepen and enrich one another: A townhouse in Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village; illness, and treatments that come at a terrible cost; wealth and squalor; the weak and the strong; race; the definition of family, and of nationhood; the dangerous righteousness of the powerful, and of revolutionaries; the longing to find a place in an earthly paradise, and the gradual realization that it can't exist. What unites not just the characters, but these Americas, are their reckonings with the qualities that make us human: Fear. Love. Shame. Need. Loneliness''--Dust jacket flap.

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