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7 Reviews
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant sequel breaks the mould
Most sequels do not live up to expectations, but this has been well worth the wait. The main characters are the same with the addition of the quirky Lewis family and although time has now moved on in the life of Mrs Robinson and her family, the inventive, original plot together with riveting pithy conversation makes the book a constant page turner until the brilliant...
Published on 4 Aug 2007 by Mr. A. Artman

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars What a load of drivel.
This was a readable book, but unsatisfying and empty. The style of writing was good and this went some way towards redeeming what otherwise appeared to be an attempt to cash in on the success of The Graduate. The characters were unbelievable caricatures and the plot was utterly ridiculous. The situations that the characters got themselves into, and felt powerless within,...
Published on 31 Aug 2008 by R.B.


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant sequel breaks the mould, 4 Aug 2007
By 
Mr. A. Artman "tony_artman" (London, United KIngdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Home School (Hardcover)
Most sequels do not live up to expectations, but this has been well worth the wait. The main characters are the same with the addition of the quirky Lewis family and although time has now moved on in the life of Mrs Robinson and her family, the inventive, original plot together with riveting pithy conversation makes the book a constant page turner until the brilliant denouement at the end.

Much more of a comedy than the original, sure to be seen in celloloid form I would anticipate.

TArtman139@btconnect.com
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5.0 out of 5 stars What Happened Next, 13 May 2014
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This review is from: Home School (Kindle Edition)
The film and the book 'The Graduate' are among my top favourites. Sequels don't always work but 'Home School' does it for me
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4.0 out of 5 stars A gem, 24 July 2013
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This review is from: Home School (Kindle Edition)
This wonderful book which follows The Graduate ten years on is beautifully crafted and full of surprises. The odd-ball supporting cast like Goya who breast-feeds her nine-year old son is a hoot. I could feel the well-meaning heart of Benjamin and Elaine's efforts to school their two sons at home and although it's hilariously funny, strangely the ending left me feeling very sad for reasons I can't explain.

The succinct dialogue between Benjamin and Elaine is wonderful. For example,
'Speak,' Elaine says.
'I'm choosing my words.'
'I hope you choose them well.'
It was quiet.
'How long do you plan to spend choosing them?'
'They're chosen.'
'May I hear them?'
'You may.'
Several more seconds passed.
'When?' (and then he speaks).

Or,
'Benjamin.'
'Are you coming? Elaine?
'Do you remember the sound of me screaming, Benjamin?'
'Screaming?'
'You haven't heard it for a while. I wondered if you remembered it.
'Let me think back.'
'In ten seconds you won't have to think back.'

The trouble is the other characters also speak in the same way as if they've all completed two years at assertiveness training.

The other reason for the four stars relates to the seduction scene between Benjamin and Mrs Robinson, an attempt I think to re-create those other scenes from The Graduate, but it's so off-the-wall, it's unconvincing.

Those points aside, I recommend this book to everyone as a little gem of a read.
Freak Out! My Life with Frank Zappa
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5.0 out of 5 stars Book of the year - too late or too early?, 31 Jan 2012
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This review is from: Home School (Paperback)
I'm a bit late catching up with this 2007 sequel to THE GRADUATE. There are some interesting facts about Webb's publishing and financial travails on Wikipedia. I find that he lives less than 10 miles from me on the UK south coast.

Seemingly inspired by Webb and his wife's own experience with their children, HOME SCHOOL is set eleven years into the marriage of Benjamin and Elaine Braddock. They live in in upstate New York. Ben stacks shelves in the local library. They've taken their two sons out of school to educate them themselves at home. The school principal is threatening legal action to get the kids back into the system. To solve this dilemma Bejamin flies in his estranged mother-in-law from California, a woman now referred to as 'Nan' whom we remember as 'Mrs Robinson'. Mrs Robinson is a widow, still over-sexed and with a cynic's turn of phrase: "Between daytime TV and my AA meetings there just aren't enough hours in the day."

Nan quickly - and quirkily - solves the problem with the principal, but she settles in to become a cuckoo in the nest of their 'alternative' lifestyle. To dislodge her they invite some friends from Vermont to stay, another home-schooling couple and their weird kids. This family is deeply into a Tantric sort of life. Elaine, a woman permanently on the verge, locks herself in the attic and leaves the confrontation(s) to Benjamin; when she does descend from the attic, this edgy Comedy of Errors lurches, like an Alan Ayckbourn play, (almost) into Tragedy.

As in THE GRADUATE (which I've just re-read, with huge pleasure), Charles Webb never describes how the characters look (inevitably we can only see them as Dustin Hoffman, Katharine Ross and Anne Bancroft). In the first book they have no 'interior life'; we only know what they are thinking from what they say. In HOME SCHOOL there are a very few insights into Ben and Elaine's mindset, but it is always the dialogue that carries the story forward. The dialogue is leaner and meaner here than in the original. Webb's undescribed cast comes vividly, painfully, to life - especially Mrs Robinson, the mother-in-law, indeed the mother, from Hell.

I enjoyed every well-chosen word of these two short novels more than anything I've read in the last 18 months. At the end of January it's perhaps too early (and in another sense four years too late) to make this my book of the year.

[Reviewer is the author of SHAIKH-DOWN]
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mrs Robinson's return!, 18 May 2009
By 
A. Cornes - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Home School (Paperback)
Home School

In Home School Charles Webb takes us back to the tangled web of a relationship that is Benjamin Braddock, Elaine Robinson (now Braddock) and Ben's now mother in law, Mrs Robinson - Previously the woman with whom he has an affair whilst "considering his future" in the Graduate.

If you thought the dialogue in the Graduate was fast and snappy then you will not be disappointed in this sequel. The other characters on display in this novel are well observed, hypocritical school governors of dubious sexual morals, mountain people academics home schooling their "unique" children - Still breatfed long past babyhood into childhood...

Mrs. Robinson now called "Nan" is still brilliantly dry and acerbic.
I regularly laughed out loud not always in the most approprriate places whilst reading this. A great return to the Mrs Robinson story.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars What a load of drivel., 31 Aug 2008
By 
R.B. (London, UK.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Home School (Hardcover)
This was a readable book, but unsatisfying and empty. The style of writing was good and this went some way towards redeeming what otherwise appeared to be an attempt to cash in on the success of The Graduate. The characters were unbelievable caricatures and the plot was utterly ridiculous. The situations that the characters got themselves into, and felt powerless within, seemed incongruent with the intelligent, self-reliant adults they supposedly were. As a result I had no sympathy with them and continued to read simply to pass time on my commute to work.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bland, 16 May 2010
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This review is from: Home School (Paperback)
It is clear in my opinion that the director and actors of the film "The Graduate" were responsible for a quantum leap up and beyond the simple story of a seduced young man falling in love with his seducer's daughter. The basic idea however does appeal to many a young man - being introduced ( was Ben a virgin to that point really?) to the carnal aspects of relationships.
As yet I have not really got into "Home Schooling" which is about as bland a title as one might imagine even without an imagination. I will try to take it up again but there is a plank nearby warping and I must spend some time watching it!!!!
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Home School
Home School by Charles Webb (Paperback - 5 Jun 2008)
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