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A Heart So White (Panther) [Paperback]

Javier Marias , Margaret Jull Costa
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
Price: £7.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Book Description

19 Jun 1997 Panther
If Ranz has told no lies to his son Juan, that is because Juan has asked no questions. But when Juan marries, and his wife and father have things to tell each other, drama follows. And everything we learn about Ranz's troubled past seems set to repeat itself in a cycle of intrigue and violence.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: The Harvill Press; New edition edition (19 Jun 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1860463398
  • ISBN-13: 978-1860463396
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 13 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 598,454 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
I DID NOT WANT to know but I have since come to know that one of the girls, when she wasn't a girl anymore and hadn't long been back from her honeymoon, went into the bathroom, stood in front of the mirror, unbuttoned her blouse, took off her bra and aime Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Eloquent and yet flawed... 26 Aug 2010
This is a difficult book to judge; parts of it verge on the brilliant, parts of it seem unnecessary. In addition, there is always the lurking fear that the translation itself is a significant factor.

In places Marias has superb control, a great depth of observation, and some important and thought-provoking things to say. In particular, his musings on marriage and how two individuals accommodate each other, resonate with the reader. In these places, the characters seem to flesh out and become real and vibrant.

In other places, the book appears to drift. The narrative becomes elliptical, slipping through several eras and time zones within the same sentence. In many ways, it is a confusing book to read; sentences can last 200 words, paragraphs two or three pages. The density this brings might be seen to be fitting to the microscopic detail that concerns Marias. On the other hand, it robs those details of their power - they are caught up in a seemingly endless spool of words, and so remain hidden when they should be standing out. It is difficult to say whether this is the translation, or how it was originally written.

Ultimately, this book is enjoyable because the writer is clearly talented, eloquent and erudite; it is enjoyable because it has some interesting things to say about love and relationships. However, it would have been so much better had it been better structured on the page.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
This intense, lyrical novel unfolds slowly but surely. The pacing, the quality of the prose and the insight into human nature are of the finest. It's a book about love and secrets and why some secrets are best never told.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Profound reading 15 July 2004
One of the best books I have ever read... Dense reading, about love, marriage, the weird and wonderful politics of translators and interpreters.. Shows us the depths one can go to for love and its devastating consequences which linger on from one generation to the next.
The words, prose, thoughts and images stay in my mind with the passing of time... the mark of a great piece of philosophical, lyrical writing...
Keep writing Javier!!!!
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