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Cassandra At The Wedding (VMC) Paperback – 18 Jan 1982


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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Virago; New edition edition (18 Jan. 1982)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0860682447
  • ISBN-13: 978-0860682448
  • Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 19.8 x 1.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,219,152 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

I-whose usual bed time is ten o'clock-stayed up all night reading that exquisite CASSANDRA AT THE WEDDING, dazzled by the pyrotechnics of such an artist (Carson McCullers)

A novel of exceptional quality (THE TIMES)

Flows and sparkles like a spring freshet (SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE)

Belongs with Salinger's CATCHER IN THE RYE and McCullers's THE MEMBER OF THE WEDDING as a modern American classic (Georgina Hammick)

Book Description

*Cassandra at the Wedding was first published in 1962, but its freshness and immediacy place it with the best of contemporary writing. *A fresh, insightful, moving and funny portrayal of sisterly love.

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I TOLD them I could be free by the twenty-first, and that I'd come home the twenty-second. Read the first page
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By DC on 26 Aug. 2005
Format: Paperback
This is a book I cannot recommend highly enough. Cassandra could be the big sister of Holden Caulfield from Catcher in the Rye, with her pithy one-liners and caustic asides that hide a sad, sweet vulnerability. Do not make the mistake of thinking that because Cassandra at the Wedding is a modern classic it is an earnest, dusty old tome - it is an absolute joy to read, and so fresh and accessible that it could have been written today. Witty, wry, poignant and beautifully written, it is the story of two sisters, twins, and their search for identity. Their verbal sparring is second to none - and it also has the best hangover scene I've ever read (see chapter 3).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dizzydays on 30 April 2012
Format: Paperback
Never judge a book by it's cover - never more true than with this book. Why they chose the chit-lit look is beyond me... but luckily what's inside is a treasure! It's quite common for sister's when they're young to promise to spend the rest of their lives together, for their husbands and families to all live together, or at worst to live in the same neighbourhood - but what if those sister's are twins, and part of a kooky family that are isolated from wider society, and then one twin moves away and falls in love? Cassandra is the "left behind" twin, a funny, selfish, impulsive, heavy drinker. This is the story of when she returns home for the wedding, or if she has her way - the non-wedding. A short, fun, and moving novel.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Antenna TOP 500 REVIEWER on 2 May 2013
Format: Paperback
How do you react when your identical twin sister announces her intention to get married? Particularly if you have spent your entire childhood in the self-contained bubble of a rural backwater, with an academic philosopher for a father, encouraging you to dissect every thought, and a novelist mother to feed your preoccupation with words? What if your parents have laboured to make you different in superficial matters, overlooking the fact that you differ in the deep sense that one twin wishes to share the same life forever whilst the other wishes to break free into adulthood?

This recipe for high drama is a gripping page turner. I could not wait to get to the end, knowing that I would need to go back later to milk Baker's keen prose for the full sense of all her sharp and original observations. It often reads like the plays for which the author was well-known, with the advantage that a novel gives scope for the deeper introspection and exploration of the characters' inner thoughts.

The book is written from the alternating viewpoints of the two sisters: Cassandra and Judith, which gives you in time their very different takes on the same situations. Cassandra is neurotic, manipulative, a keen observer of others, with a biting wit, but an utterly unreliable narrator who lacks a sense of proportion, a source of huge irritation but also great sympathy to the reader. This is a tragi-comedy with many moments of great humour, and a light touch which adds to the pathos of the sadder events without making them too heavily dreary or depressing.
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By Eileen Shaw TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 7 Dec. 2014
Format: Paperback
Cassandra is one of twin daughters. Their mother has died in the not too distant past, but They live with their grandmother and father, both of whom are not given much to do in this novel. It’s the women who are important in this well-written and highly enjoyable book. Cassandra and her twin sister Judith have been at different colleges. But are on their way home to the Ranch, where they live charmed lives. Cassandra is the chief protagonist. Her sister Judith is a talented musician who is planning a wedding to a medical student, and Cassandra has a Thesis to finish.

Something goes wrong shortly after they arrive home. But rather than say exactly what, I’ll leave the reader to find out for herself. It puts the life of one of the sisters at risk; however, it doesn’t stop the wedding.

The writing is careful and clever. We immediately sense which of the sisters is going to prove to be a problem and her particular mindset is beautifully delineated. The book brilliantly arrives at a final situation and along the way we have seen that a devastating idea has been worked through, awkwardly and piquant by turns. The character creation is absolutely superb, The sisters’ conversations are marvellously written and we catch at the meanings that lie beneath their talk. It demonstrates their closeness, even while they are at odds in this deeply solid relationship. This is a brilliantly written book. Sharp, devastating and marvellously erudite. I found it deeply affecting. It also demonstrates how to create someone unbalanced, difficult, but still ultimately loveable. I liked this one a lot.
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By dorcas on 4 Oct. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This well-written and emotionally engaging novel takes the reader deep into the world of a person narrator - first one twin and then the other. I found all the characters and the setting credible and involving. Well worth a read.
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