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Le avventure di un uomo vivo by Gilbert…
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Le avventure di un uomo vivo (original 1912; edition 1997)

by Gilbert Keith Chesterton

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677524,175 (3.91)19
Manalive pits a group of disillusioned young people against Mr. Innocent Smith, a bubbly, high-spirited gentleman who literally falls into their midst. Accused of murder and denounced for repeatedly marrying his wife and attempting to live in various houses, Smith prompts his newfound acquaintances to recognize an important idea: that life is worth living.… (more)
Member:DavideValecchi
Title:Le avventure di un uomo vivo
Authors:Gilbert Keith Chesterton
Info:Casale Monferrato, Piemme, 1997
Collections:Your library
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Manalive by G. K. Chesterton (1912)

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This comic novel encapsulates everything about Chesterton that appealed to Borges. It's hilariously funny and surreal, with the author's animus against pomposity in full force. Needless to say, the prose is excellent.

Chesterton claimed that "the normal was abnormal," that modern life forced people into paradoxical situations. For example, we are able to experience the glory of the highest pride and the awe of the meekest humility at the same time. Chesterton saw this as a manifestation of Original Sin and that a return to innocence was only possible for holy fools, such as this novel's central character. ( )
  le.vert.galant | Nov 19, 2019 |
It might have been a good Father-Brown-like short story: the far-fetchedness of the plot excusable on account of the moral. Unnaturally, this novel just heaps more and more far-fetchedness while adding more morals only sparsely, and does it so in a way making, say, Walter Scott look like a succinct author in comparison. ( )
  Stravaiger64 | Sep 25, 2019 |
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A wind sprang high in the west like a wave of unreasonable happiness and tore eastward across England, trailing with it the frosty scent of forests and the cold intoxication of the sea.
Quotations
"I don't deny," he said, "that there should be priests to remind men that they will one day die. I only say that at certain strange epochs it is necessary to have another kind of priests, called poets, actually to remind them that they are not dead yet."
"It was our weakness and not our strength that put a rich refuse in the sky. These were the rivers of our vanity pouring into the void."
"I am going to hold a pistol to the head of the Modern Man."
The room was comfortably lined with books in that rich and human way that makes the walls seem alive; it was a deep and full, but slovenly, bookcase, of the sort that is constantly ransacked for the purposes of reading in bed.
"What (the undersigned persons ask themselves) is a puddle? A puddle repeats infinity, and is full of light; nevertheless, if analyzed objectively, a puddle is a piece of dirty water spread very thin on mud."
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Manalive pits a group of disillusioned young people against Mr. Innocent Smith, a bubbly, high-spirited gentleman who literally falls into their midst. Accused of murder and denounced for repeatedly marrying his wife and attempting to live in various houses, Smith prompts his newfound acquaintances to recognize an important idea: that life is worth living.

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