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Europa [Kindle Edition]

Tim Parks
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £8.99
Kindle Price: £4.35 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Book Description

A brilliantly comic, dark and dyspeptic novel about an obsessive love gone sour. Jealousy and revenge, passion and dread intertwine in one man's soul as he's trapped in the awful claustrophobia of a three-day coach journey across Europe with a group of people he loathes - and the woman who broke his heart.

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"Europa is a full and rounded and very disturbing novel…guaranteed to intrigue and, more often than not, have you squirming and wincing." (The Times)

"Sheer enjoyment... Doffing his hat to Joyce and Beckett, Parks really hits his stride" (Mail on Sunday)

"The best thing about Europa is the voice Tim Parks conjures up: Marlow's wry, defeated reason keeps you turning the pages... A forlorn but seductive voice, reminding us that it is far easier to unite a sprawling continent than the few cubic metres that contain a human soul" (Sunday Times)

"The triumph of the work is its discomforting portrayal of an agile mind hampered by the twin shackles of longing and disgust... Europa is that rare beast, a book which demands and withstands a second reading" (Daily Telegraph)

Book Description

Shortlisted for the Booker prize, Europa is a brilliantly comic and breathtakingly dark novel of obsessive love

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 402 KB
  • Print Length: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital; New Ed edition (12 Jun. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0089WGVFO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • : Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #360,719 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well-written musings on the new Europe 4 Jan. 2005
Jerry Marlow narrates his thoughts and happenings during a bus journey to Strasbourg by Milan-based foreign lecturers and supporting students to air grievances in the European parliament. Marlow is having a bitter, mid-life crisis after marriage
break-up; difficulties with his teenage daughter, and a further break-up with a female student - who is also on the bus-trip.. The undoubted strength of this work is Tim Parks' prose: extremely long sentences set down the cerebral Marlow's jostling and competing thoughts in a challenging, yet highly readable, 'stream of consciousness' narrative.
Aside from Marlow himself, there are a number of other well-drawn and intriguing characters, most notably the trip-organiser, Indian-Welshman Vikram Griffiths. Along the way, Marlow unleashes his criticisms of various issues regarding the new Europe, including the wastefulness and cost of maintaining parliaments in both Brussels and Strasbourg; rivalries and jealousies in the supposed united Europe; the sterility of modern European architecture; communication problems, and pre-Euro currency dramas. Although this material is well-handled and interesting, much of it has been extensively covered in the media and some of the issues already feel a bit dated. Nevertheless, I would strongly recommend this novel primarily for the quality of the writing and the chance to enter the mind of the bitter, troubled and intelligent narrator.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "...never an equilibrio interiore..." 5 Dec. 2012
By Eileen Shaw TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Twice short-listed for prizes such as the Booker in 1997 and 2003, Parks has been overlooked too often to be fair to his literary talents. His book Judge Savage and his Italian murder mystery series Cara Massimina and Mimi's Ghost are my favourites of his work so far, but I have lots of other titles to try. This one has the background of the European Parliament and takes place over four days of a trip to Brussels to deliver a petition to put foreign language translaters on the same salary as Italian nationals doing the same job. We see everything from Jerry's consciousness. He is one of the delegates, and though he is an intelligent and attractive protagonist, he alternates between a brusquely non communicative and vaguely hostile attitude, and being one of the lads. The sexism is shockingly endemic; the girl students are "tottie," (a sneeringly abusive term for a group of girl students brought along to add their support to the project. Or alternatively, to provide the male teachers with entertainment). Jerry's friend, Vikram Griffiths and his dog Dafydd - a mongrel that Jerry dislikes on sight, the enigmatic and too-smooth Georg, and the creepily sexist, Colin are a few of the other tutors on the trip. What saves it from a bad Carry-On up The Alps sequence is the sad, witty, and sometimes excoriating freize of impressions, thoughts and memories that run through Jerry's mind.

Even though this is brilliantly rendered and reads with perfect and timely pitch, it can feel overwhelming.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not easy reading at first but well worth it 9 May 2001
By A Customer
As a fellow Englishman in Italy I absoloutely devoured 'Italian Neighbours' and An Italian Education' which seemed to be written just for me! Europa is my first T Parks novel however and although I found the style a little hard going at the beginning, I was soon taken in by its compulsive narrative style and the intricacy of the characters. The "train of thought" style is at once 'heavy' yet logical. Great stuff .. looking forward to 'Destiny' and who knows whether I shall bump into the man himself one day in our adopted nation!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Europa 5 April 2015
Booker shortlisted, Europa is a ferociously intelligent and witty novel. The brilliantly sustained first-person stream of consciousness narration comes from Jerry Marlow, who – struggling with a mid-life crisis of sorts – finds himself on a coach to Strasbourg with other Milan University staff (including a woman with whom he had recently had an intense affair) to petition the European Parliament about employment rights. Characters are extremely well drawn. You can read this as political satire and/or as a study of excruciating human situations. I was sorry when it ended and am now keen to try out more by this author. Recommendations?
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