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Dreams of Innocence [Kindle Edition]

Lisa Appignanesi
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: £3.59 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
 
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  • Length: 592 pages
  • Word Wise: Enabled
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Book Description

Saga, Romance
A novel of dangerous passions and dangerous purities…
Max Bergman, charismatic leader of the environmental movement, has vanished without trace. His acolyte, campaigning journalist, Helena Latimer, sets out to find him. What she finds instead of the man who has embodied her dreams is a turbulent history which draws her present into the vortex of the Great War and the excesses of a Germany where Nazism is on the rise. This is an epic story of dangerous passions and equally dangerous purities, of male fantasies, of fathers and fatherlands, where Mother Nature wears as many faces as her children wish of her.

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Product Description

From the Back Cover

DANGEROUS PASSIONS, DANGEROUS PURITIES

Max Bergmann, charismatic leader of the environmental movement, has disappeared. The last person to have heard from him is campaigning journalist Helena Latimer. Determined to trace the man who has so profoundly shaped her, she sets off for Germany, only to find herself entangled in a history as passionate in its excesses as it is in its purities.

'Dreams of Innocence' is a novel of grand scope, of Europe before the Great War through to the present day. A compelling love story in which the embrace of the ideal is as powerful as the charge of the erotic, it also tells of fathers and fatherlands, brotherhoods and male fantasies, and three women's struggle to define an identity in their midst.

'Memory and Desire' also available from HarperCollins Publishers

Acclaim for Lisa Appignanesi:

'An erotic, deeply intelligent novel'
ROSIE THOMAS

'A rich, epic novel'
COSMOPOLITAN

About the Author

Lisa Appignanesi has been a university lecturer in European Studies and was Deputy Director of London’s Institute of Contemporary Arts. Her works of non-fiction include ‘Freud’s Women’ (with John Forrester), a biographical portrait of Simone de Beauvoir, and a history of cabaret. She has edited ‘The Rushdie File’ and a number of books on contemporary culture, as well as producing various films for television. Lisa Appignanesi lives in London with her two children.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1643 KB
  • Print Length: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Lisa Appignanesi (12 Dec. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00ANLK6KK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #703,183 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not recommended 28 Jun. 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Journalist Helena Latimer has led a hard life, growing up as an orphan among foster families that use and abuse her. But, now that she has met Max Bergmann, ecologist and possibly eco-terrorist, her life seems complete. But, when Max goes missing, Helena sets out to find out what has happened to him. The trail leads to Germany, where Helena finds the journal of Anna von Leinsdorf, a young Viennese woman who lived and loved in the Germany of the inter-war years. This book is a vital link in understanding what has happened to Max, but there are a lot of pieces that Helena must put together first!
Hmmm. This is a somewhat hard book to review. Part way through the book, the storyline drops completely from the 1990s to the 1910s when you get to the journal, and at that point the story is quite excellent, with a lot of interesting characters and occurrences. However, when you return to the 1990s, the story returns to being slow moving and rather heavy. Plus, politics hangs over the modern side of the story like a smothering blanket - everyone is either an eco-terrorist, a fighter for native rights, or what have you. It gives the story a very odd feeling.
The cover proclaims the book to be "lushly erotic," but do not take that too seriously. There are a number of sexual encounters between characters in the book, but they are handled in a very clipped and hurried manner, taking away any feeling of eros or even of romance.
So, I guess I must say that while this book does have its moments, there are simply not enough of them. I give it three stars for its interesting plot twists and wonderful inter-war storyline, but I do not really recommend it.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Ideals Can Be Dangerous 23 July 2013
By Kate Hopkins TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Lisa Appignanesi's second novel is a strange mixture of genuinely serious literary fiction, a thriller, a historical romance with a soft-porn edge and an examination of feminism. The novel opens in the 1980s. Helena Latimer, a brilliant environmental journalist, is searching for her mentor, the ecologist Max Bergmann, who has mysteriously vanished. Her search eventually leads her to a beautiful country house in a village near Munich. Let in by the maid, she finds a mysterious book entitled 'The Possessed: Anna's Book' and begins to read. The story then shifts back to 1913 and the story of Anna von Leinsdorf, a beautiful Viennese aristocrat living in Germany. We learn of Anna's marriage to Bruno Adler, a wealthy industrialist many years her senior, and of their sexual troubles. We read about Anna's intellectual sister Bettina who persuades her scientist husband Klaus into a celibate marriage as she fears sex will lessen her intelligence. And we learn a great deal about Johannes Bahr, the radical, brilliant and womanizing painter who bursts into both the sisters' lives just before Anna's marriage and returns after he is invalided out during World War I. First Johannes sleeps with Bettina, who becomes pregnant with his child. But she decides she loves Klaus more, and stays with him. Johannes then enters into a platonic affair with Anna (who won't sleep with him for fear of hurting her husband). Unfortunately, a painting of Anna convinces Bruno that Anna is sleeping with Johannes, and he first rapes then leaves her. Anna not surprisingly then decides she will sleep with Johannes. Soon after she realizes that she is pregnant, and is not sure who the father is. When Bruno dies at the end of World War I, Anna decides to throw in her lot with Johannes. Read more ›
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