HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Big news! LibraryThing is now free to all! Read the blog post and discuss the change on Talk.
dismiss
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Giovanni's Room by James Baldwin
Loading...

Giovanni's Room (1956)

by James Baldwin

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: KIK * Klub Interesującej Książki

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,581772,439 (4.12)313
Set in the 1950s Paris of American expatriates, liaisons, and violence, a young man finds himself caught between desire and conventional morality. With a sharp, probing imagination, James Baldwin's now-classic narrative delves into the mystery of loving and creates a moving, highly controversial story of death and passion that reveals the unspoken complexities of the human heart.… (more)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 313 mentions

English (74)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  Hebrew (1)  All languages (77)
Showing 1-5 of 74 (next | show all)
The prose is, at times, luscious and, at others, self-consciously bourgeois -- as if Baldwin's attempts to model himself after James are a little too contrived. Nevertheless, it is a compelling novel worthy of its reputation. ( )
  TheaJean | Jun 2, 2020 |
This is one slick piece of writing. Like whiskey, this tale of universal love, desire, and the boxes we put ourselves in burns as it goes down, but like most fires of love, when it comes back up, it's very messy.

Of course, I could be talking about any kind of romance novel, but this one is special because it is written by a master of prose, it came out in the '50s, and it is a classic of gay literature. Or is it?

I don't know.

The writing transcends sexual orientation, the color of his skin (black), and dives right into the heart of what it means to be trapped. Trapped by love, by expectations, by poverty, by the community, or by your own pig-headedness.

Suffice to say, it's rather universal. I'm sure lots of people might raise their hands and say this is one of THE seminal pieces of black literature or gay literature, but I just see it as great literature. :) ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
I neither loved this nor hated it. It's always difficult for me to form an opinion on books with exclusively "unlikable" characters, especially when they are classics and have merit that I do appreciate. I enjoyed the writing style and I always like when there's other languages (French, in this case) mixed in. ( )
  j_tuffi | May 30, 2020 |
Read 2016. ( )
  sasameyuki | May 11, 2020 |
Having loved Go Tell It on the Mountain, I found myself disappointed with my second James Baldwin novel. Baldwin's prose in Go Tell It on the Mountain was ferocious, dynamic in a way I've never before encountered in American literature. In Giovanni's Room, unfortunately, the general tone feels much more detached, with most of the character's exhibiting a lethargic ennui only occasionally broken by bouts of horniness. This makes the intensity of the novel's one powerful character, Giovanni himself, seem melodramatic and ugly rather than loving and endearing as it may have seemed had Giovanni been a character in Go Tell It on the Mountain instead.

The story is one that naturally tugs at a readers heartstrings. Baldwin's protagonist, David, struggles to come to terms with his sexuality as an expat in Paris in the middle of the 20th century, and he has to choose between his female fiancée and his male boyfriend. I really did enjoy the book, but it hasn't stuck with me the way Go Tell it on the Mountain has. That's no biggie, though, because there aren't many books that have. ( )
  bgramman | May 9, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 74 (next | show all)
what draws lovers of the book to its story of betrayal and the possibility of redemption through truth and, ultimately, to the question of the body as home, is the vision of Baldwin stumbling through it, sure-footed and alone, walking toward the idea that love may come attached with different ideas of what it should look like, feel like, but in the end, it’s what you do with its responsibilities that renders you genderless — and human.
added by danielx | editNew York Times, Hilton Als (May 5, 2019)
 
added by gsc55 | editHearts on Fire, Delta (May 11, 2013)
 

» Add other authors (21 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
James Baldwinprimary authorall editionscalculated
Phillips, CarylIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Prinsen, G.A.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Information from the Polish Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
I am the man, I suffered, I was there.
- Whitman
Dedication
FOR LUCIEN
First words
I stand at the window of this great house in the south of France as night falls, the night which is leading me to the most terrible morning of my life.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Information from the French Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (4.12)
0.5 3
1 4
1.5 1
2 21
2.5 9
3 116
3.5 39
4 281
4.5 41
5 293

Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141186356, 0141032944

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 146,709,813 books! | Top bar: Always visible