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Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively

Moon Tiger (1987)

by Penelope Lively

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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1,608646,564 (3.9)462

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English (60)  Dutch (2)  German (1)  All languages (63)
Showing 1-5 of 60 (next | show all)
I absolutely loved this book. Claudia is at the end of her life and decides to "write" a history of the world in her head while lying in the hospital. She muses on her life and her relationships. Among these are a brief love affair during WWII, an intimate relationship with her brother, and a tense relationship with her daughter. There are lots of insights into living along the way. I found the whole thing very well done.

Highly recommended. ( )
  japaul22 | Aug 11, 2018 |
Hailed as a forgotten classic, I hope this Booker winner finds more new readers like me. A woozy story about love and ageing, I’d recommend this to anyone and look forward to making my way though more of Lively’s work. ( )
  alexrichman | Jul 18, 2018 |
Claudia Hampton's life is drawing to a close, drifting softly away to smoke and ash like a burning mosquito repellent coil, the Moon Tiger of the title...the symbol of a brief intense period of her life when love was the glowing eye at its center. As Claudia slips in and out of consciousness her mind is occupied with "writing" her autobiography. Her memories and musings of past affairs and other attachments are interspersed with vignettes from the point of view of some of the players in her story. Claudia was a war correspondent; a writer of popular history; an independent, not entirely likeable person whether seen from her own perspective or that of family, lovers or friends. And yet, her life makes quite compelling reading. At the end, we regret her failed relationships, the loss of her one great passion, and the falling of that last bit of ash only slightly less than she does herself. ( )
1 vote laytonwoman3rd | Jun 6, 2018 |
I got about a quarter of the way into it and just didn't want to continue. The disjointed story telling wasn't too bad but the narrator/main character was just irritating me to no end. The to read list is long, I'm moving on.
1 vote amyem58 | May 12, 2018 |
(13) An old 1980's Booker winner that I have been meaning to read - a recent find at a used book store. I usually love sprawling long messy fiction, but every now and then I read a masterful short novel that does so much with so few pages and I am reminded what literature as art really is. Claudia is a brilliant, headstrong, fiercely independent girl then woman who is at the end of her life and reflecting. Her life's stories spool out in a non-linear but easily read narrative that is spectacular. Richly imagined and deeply moving - you hardly know that Lively has aroused such deep feeling in you until some of the climactic scenes occur. Certainly her time in Egypt on the desert front during WW2 was incredibly written and likely close to home for the author who lived in Cairo for a time.

I really enjoyed Claudia despite her flaws -- she was vulnerable, generous, honest. I loved her relationship with Tom, her brother Gordon, and Lisa. I loved how Lively occasionally went omniscient and put us in the brains of Claudia's intimates. It was both effective and affecting. I can see why this won the Booker Prize as it is crafted so well and everything just . . works. It is a story; it has gravitas - history moves on when you die, you are written out of the story. . . and the characterization is amazing.

I had thought that Lively's writing was a bit too understated for me; a bit too British if you will. But this really was one of the best pieces of literary fiction I have read in quite some time. If I had to describe in comparative terms to books I have read in the recent past, I would say - it was a bit like the 'The English Patient' starring Joan Didion as the female protagonist. Highly recommended. ( )
  jhowell | Mar 8, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 60 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lively, Penelopeprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Thwaite, AnthonyIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"I'm writing a history of the world", she says.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0802135331, Paperback)

The elderly Claudia Hampton, a best-selling author of popular history; lies alone in a London hospital bed. Memories of her life still glow in her fading consciousness, but she imagines writing a history of the world. Instead, Moon Tiger is her own history, the life of a strong, independent woman, with its often contentious relations with family and friends. At its center — forever frozen in time, the still point of her turning world — is the cruelly truncated affair with Tom, a British tank commander whom Claudia knew as a reporter in Egypt during World War II.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:17 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Claudia, a best-selling writer, recalls her life of adventure as a newspaper correspondent, novelist, lover, and mother, while the people close to her file past her hospital bed.

» see all 6 descriptions

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Average: (3.9)
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1 8
1.5 1
2 13
2.5 5
3 58
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4.5 41
5 82

Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141188316, 0141044845

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