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Bonita Avenue [Kindle Edition]

Peter Buwalda , Jonathan Reeder
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £8.99
Kindle Price: £4.68 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Book Description

A darkly hilarious tale of a model family's disintegration.

Professor Siem Sigerius - maths genius, jazz lover, judo champion, Renaissance man. When Aaron meets his girlfriend Joni's family for the first time, her multitalented father could hardly be a more intimidating figure, but somehow the underachieving photographer manages to bluff his way to a friendship with the paterfamilias. With his feet under the table at the beautiful Sigerius farmhouse, Aaron feels part of the family. A perfect family.

Until, that is, things start to go wrong in a very big way. A cataclysmic explosion in a firework factory, the advent of internet pornography, the reappearance of a forgotten murderer and a jet-black wig-all play a role in the spectacular fragmentation of the Sigerius clan... and of Aaron's fragile psyche.

"Great European art: the Dutchman Peter Buwalda explodes the bourgeois family saga. The narrative pyrotechnics alone are a tour de force." Die Zeit

"Peter Buwalda's impressive family saga is a genuine page-turner, with a forceful, precise style. The author races with unstoppable speed towards the finish, without getting entangled in the numerous gripping narrative strands, without even steering out of the curve." Libris-Prize Jury Report, 2011

"Buwalda's debut novel [is] daring in its linguistic power and freedom, and impressive, even frightening, in its psychological sharpness and precision ... great and outrageous." Frankfurter Rundschau

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Product Description


'One wild ride: a swirling helix of a family saga...a new writer as toe-curling as early Roth, as roomy as Franzen and as caustic as Houellebecq. Don't let me forget to mention Jonathan Reeder's note-perfect English translation.' Anthony Cummins, Sunday Telegraph, 5-stars

'Dutch bestseller about internet porn lives up to hype....a considerable achievement for a seasoned writer, much less a newcomer...' James Kidd, Independent

'Fluent and complex, uncompromising and occasionally shocking...' Daily Mail

'Buwalda writes with ferocious dexterity... Bonita Avenue is a family epic seething with learning and regret, the kind with which commuting becomes a pleasure.' New Statesman

'A brilliantly constructed story, with complex characters tested to the limit' The Lady

'One of the first great European novels of the 21st century' Foyles Bookshop interview with author

Highly, highly recommended reading.

--Savidge Reads

About the Author

Born in Brussels in 1971, Peter Buwalda is a Dutch novelist, formerly a journalist, editor at several publishers, and founder of the literary music magazine Wah-Wah. Bonita Avenue is his debut novel. Published in 2010 to critical acclaim, it was shortlisted for twelve prizes, going on to win the Academica Prize, the Selexyz Debut Prize, the Tzum Prize, the Anton Wachter Prize and the Leesclubboek van het jaar. It spent two years on the bestseller lists, and has since been translated into seven languages.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1064 KB
  • Print Length: 545 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0553417851
  • Publisher: Pushkin Press (10 April 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00IHH382K
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #56,201 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars
3.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Bonita Avenue 20 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I must be getting old and/or completely out of touch with modern fiction. I spent some time trying to work out what this was all about, and eventually gave up on the grounds that life was too short.
Often I've admired an author's ability to baffle me initially, and then lead me towards a logical end; this, sadly, can't be included in that category.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Noise but no substance 4 May 2014
By Amanda Jenkinson TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition
Peter Buwalda’s debut novel was published to widespread acclaim in his native Holland and has now made a similar impact worldwide. It is a sprawling, exuberant, wild ride of a novel, with twists and turns and a cast of eccentric characters, multi-layered and original. It’s the story of a dysfunctional family par excellence, headed by patriarch Siem Sigerius, a larger than life mathematical genius, judo champion, university professor and charismatic family man. When Aaron falls for Siem’s step-daughter Joni and is introduced to the family, he immediately falls under Siem’s spell and a friendship develops between them.
But what starts so promisingly soon degenerates into chaos as events conspire to break down everything that once seemed so successful and secure. Paranoia, madness, the fragmentation of the family and the individual members’ psyches, secrets, lies and a seemingly unbridgeable generational divide – all these dark and disturbing elements could have made this a gripping and moving tale of a family’s fall from grace.
But for me this novel just doesn’t hang together. Buwalda tackles far too many weighty themes, from internet pornography to suicide, without saying anything very meaningful about any of them. His characters are neither likeable nor sympathetic, and Siem Sigeruis, on whom the novel largely focusses, is an over-the-top caricature, obsessed as he is with sex and seemingly incapable of forging meaningful relationships.
Buwalda does have an eye for the arresting detail, a facility for amusing set-pieces, and an acute awareness of contemporary issues, but tries to pack in too much. He just about manages to keep control of his narrative as the pace quickens and the novel hurtles towards its climax, but by that time I had lost interest in the whole sorry bunch of them.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This is one of the best books I have read 15 July 2015
This is one of the best books I have read, reminded me of Donna tarts a secret history in some ways, either way I enjoyed it very much
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3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars 19 Jun. 2015
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A very strong start but the second half of the book doesn't really live up to it.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 25 July 2014
By laynee
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Great writing. Gripping book
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