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Eleanor Rigby (French) Mass Market Paperback – 7 May 2009


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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: 10 (7 May 2009)
  • Language: French
  • ISBN-10: 2264047186
  • ISBN-13: 978-2264047182
  • Product Dimensions: 18 x 1.5 x 11 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 909,187 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

‘A high spirited moving study of loneliness and all its opposites.’ Observer Books of the Year.

‘A powerful and moving examination of a life lived negotiating loneliness.’ Independent

‘“Eleanor Rigby” is one of Coupland’s subtlest indictments yet of Yankee-yuppie culture.’ Daily Telegraph

‘Bristles with acerbic observations of modern life.’ Sunday Telegraph

‘Funny, unexpected and fragile, here [Coupland is] the chronicler of our potentials rather than our losses.’ Guardian

'Douglas Coupland has surely reserved his place at the top table of North American fiction.' Independent on Sunday

'Nothing less than sublime' Time Out

'Far too wise to offer answers, but affirms that seeking them is a necessary part of our humanity.' Independent

'Coupland's last four novels are so good and so distinctive that they seem to me to mark a genuine seismic shift in the literary landscape.' Nicholas Blincoe, New Statesman

'Coupland has passion and pace, intelligence and wit. If you find anything about the way we live now disturbing and wrong, he is your man.' Daily Telegraph

'Coupland at his best can make a single phrase say more than many another writer's whole novel.' LRB

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About the Author

DOUGLAS COUPLAND first came to prominence as the author of Generation X (1995). He followed that with a sequence of ever-more daring and inventive novels, including Life After God, Girlfriend in a Coma and, most recently, Hey Nostradamus! He lives in Vancouver.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Blue Coffee on 23 Sep 2004
Format: Hardcover
Before I begin this review, I should say that I am a huge Coupland fan. When I saw his new book in a shop window, I had to get it straight away.
This book is similar in style to his later books - especially Girlfriend In A Coma, in that spectacular coincidences are dropped into the main characters life at various moments. Without giving anything away, some very strange events occur, but they are only made clear gradually, so that the reader is left trying to decide what on earth could have caused such an event. It is almost never what you expect.
However, where "Girlfriend" still had a sense of teen-agey angst about it, this book seems more about dealing with getting older. As far as I recall, this is the first book he has written entirely from a female perspective. The main theme of the book is loneliness. His writing style leaves me speechless sometimes - the ability to weave such poetry from the tiniest parts of everyday life, in a way that takes your breath away:
"We cripple our children by not telling them what loneliness is, all of its shades, and tones, and implications. When it clubs us on the head, usually just after we leave home, we're blind-sided. We have no idea what hit us. We think we're diseased, schizoid, bipolar, monstrous and lacking in dietary chromium, It takes us until thirty to figure out what sucked the joy form our youth, that made our brains shriek and burn on the inside, even while our exteriors made us seem as confident and bronzed as Qantas pilots. Loneliness."
But the book is far from depressing - the overall message of the book is distinctly optimistic, with a fair dash of the darkest humour:
"I have trouble with any meat whose name also describes what the meat used to do before it became meat"..."Hi - before I was sautéed in onions, I spent my life refining impurities from a cow's bloodstream".
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Riotgrrl/Cynic on 9 Sep 2004
Format: Hardcover
The central theme of Douglas Coupland's novel is loneliness. It's main protagonist and narrator is Liz Dunn, a woman left on the shelf. The novel recounts life from childhood in the 1970s to the present, via a possible but slightly fantastical (as with many of the events in his work) plot twist that produces a son to change her life and (temporarily) relive her loneliness.
Liz, for much of the novel, is lonely and at pains to emphasise her plainness, but to the reader she remains warm and pitiless and witty. We feel much sympathy for her (perhaps this is also because of our own fears of being alone), but you feel she would balk at our pity and rarely feels sorry for herself. The narration is typical of a Coupland character, with believable use of language and reference for the narrator, and inspiring imagery.
As in Coupland's other work, the central character is supported by some wonderfully drawn supporting characters, most especially Liz' angrily determined and bothersome mother, and her son Jeremy, whose appearance lights both Liz's world and the reader's. The relationships between children and parents and siblings are strained but loving and eternal, as indeed is the case with most families.
The novel, as so many of his, is set in Vancouver, but I think that this Vancouver is largely incidental; the changes in location are not as important as changes in time, and the locations rather reflect this. Rome and Vienna symbolise the old and Vancouver the new. Indeed in this novel, time is a location, and the differences between the world of the protagonist's childhood and the 21st Century are acute.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Evans on 9 Mar 2005
Format: Hardcover
I have to agree with Lenininatutu(!) to a certain extent. Ages ago I read Girlfriend In A Coma and was blown away by it, it may have been the quickest I've read a book ever. I just loved it. Since then I tried Microserfs and Generation X but just couldn't get into them, much to my disappointment. Hey Nostrodamus was a different story (no pun intended), I loved it all the way to the end, when nothing really happened. Nothing was solved and I just felt let down. Eleanor Rigby was a lot more satisfying, I even had a bit of a cry. It's a really good story with my favourite kind of character - the ones that makes you question yourself. The farmers got on my nerves tho. I think my problem is that I just expect too much from Douglas since Girlfriend.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mentalelf on 22 Sep 2004
Format: Hardcover
After my disappointment with Miss Wyoming and Hey Nostradamus! I was quite wary of this new novel...
I shouldn't have been.
I don't know why i adore Douglas Coupland as much as i do, maybe it's because he manages to write about people you wouldn't usually think about, in an amazingly simple but beautiful way. Eleanor Rigby is a fine example of this.
I am not sure if Douglas Coupland will ever write as good a book as Generation X again, but i do know that as long as he keeps his wonderfully simple (yet also somehow complex at the same time) stories up, i will keep coming back for more.
i don't want to give anything of the plot away, so forgive me for not talking about the actual story too much! But, take my word for it - it's lovely.
Hey Nostradamus! had the potential to be a brilliant book but i am not sure he knew where he wanted it to go or even how he wanted it to get there... it came across as a very hard book to write and i would love to know how happy he was with the finished product.
Eleanor Rigby is simply a very good book, which i finished too quickly (a bad habit with good books!), but when i passed it on to my partner to read i did so with a very big smile and nothing but praise.
It's good to have Douglas Coupland back on form and making me grin.
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