Customer Reviews


16 Reviews
5 star:
 (7)
4 star:
 (2)
3 star:
 (2)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:
 (4)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant. A heart-breaking and thought-provoking novel.
Herta Muller uses delicate imagaery (factory workers making 'tin sheep and wooden melons') to convey the quiet desperation lurking behind the fake, fixed smiles of ordinary citizens in the police state of communist Romania. The narrator leaves her poor country village to go to the city, where she hopes to find some meaning in her life. Instead she finds that no matter...
Published on 27 April 2000

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Clearly autobiographical and heartfelt, but all a bit wistful ...
Clearly autobiographical and heartfelt, but all a bit wistful and impressionistic. So often one senses that Nobel prizes for literature are awarded for subject matter not for style.
Published 3 months ago by AlbertNW


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant. A heart-breaking and thought-provoking novel., 27 April 2000
By A Customer
Herta Muller uses delicate imagaery (factory workers making 'tin sheep and wooden melons') to convey the quiet desperation lurking behind the fake, fixed smiles of ordinary citizens in the police state of communist Romania. The narrator leaves her poor country village to go to the city, where she hopes to find some meaning in her life. Instead she finds that no matter how hard she tries, she cannot stop the fear and despair that comes to infiltrate her every waking moment ('In this county, we had to walk, eat, sleep and love in fear'). Muller wonderfully evokes the harsh reality of the totalitarian state were, in having their freedom and ability to make their own choices taken away from them, human beings are reduced to zombies. A bleak and heart-rending story, but one which nonetheless has to be told.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing experience, 26 Feb 2010
By 
G. Chambers - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Land of Green Plums: A Novel (Hardcover)
I read the book after the author won the Nobel Prize and I knew a bit about her and about the subject of her writing .Being Romanian myself I had my doubts about enjoying it . Well , I was in for a huge surprise ! I can't say what was most enjoyable , the story itself with episodes that seamed so real and so easy to identify with the life experience of probably 90% of the people that lived in Romania at that time (not necessary the one related to fear and surveillance) or the way the poetry is felt underneath every sentence trying to mellow the crude experience of the characters . My only regret is that she writes in German and I do not have any knowledge of German - but even though , definitely the best modern book I read for a long , long time !
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Experiencing fear, 19 Jan 2010
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This book by 2009 Nobel Prize winner is well worth reading to obtain an ever heightening feel as to what it must have been like in Ceaucescu's Romania especially if as in the case of Muller herself you were a part of a minority (especially the German minority. The book is easy to read as it is divided into short 'paragraph' like chapters, I think the most impressive bit for me, was a meeting in college to deselect from the Party a student who had committed suicide, and the unilateral need to be counted on the right side. How would I have responded in a similar position, is a very difficult question to answer.The Land of Green Plums
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Astounding, atmospheric portrait of Romanian Communist life, 3 Jan 2010
By 
Daniel Bor (Cambridge, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
The Land of Green Plums follows in the tradition of books like Kundera's The Unbearable Lightness of Being in capturing the subtle, yet brutal psychological torments that build up under normal life within a Communist dictatorship. This semi-autobiographical novel concerns the seemingly simple story of a woman growing up, but never fitting in. Part of this alienation reflects the narrator's refusal to allow the Romanian state to control her every thought and action. Reported in a numb, symbolic way, like punctuation marks throughout the novel, are those that the state callously murders or forces to an early grave. Eventually, after persecution in a myriad of ways, the protagonist manages to escape to Germany, to freedom, but somehow little seems to have changed.

The haunting, bleak plot of The Land of Green Plums is only a tiny proportion of what makes this novel exceptional. Told by a combination of dream sequences, bitter twisted songs, and a time-fractured narrative that's addicted to childhood details, there is poetry in almost every line. There is an incredibly rich symbolic language here. There are mountains of furious, suppressed emotions hidden behind the cold, externalised sentences.

This is a novel to savour, to read slowly in order to fully absorb the intense richness of the atmospheric language. There are ideas in here so starkly ripe with meaning that I couldn't help but be in awe of the skill on almost every page. Modern literature doesn't get much better than this.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wooden Melons & Tin Sheep., 7 April 2013
By 
I wasn't too sure about this book to begin with but I soldiered on with it & came to love it by the end. I think it's a book that takes time to sink in. It's split into small segments, which switch between the narrator's memories as a child & her life in the then present day, which makes it easy to dip in & out of.
The description of life under Ceausescu is mesmerising. The everyday struggles & terror of the ordinary people: the constant searches, whispers in the street & the man with the dog who always seems four steps behind you are conveyed in an almost poetic way.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful... Astonishing, 20 May 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: The Land of Green Plums: A Novel (Hardcover)
This novel is one of the most powerful ones I have ever read. The author has a wonderful way of making us feel for the characters, and it is written in such a compassionate and moving way. This is right up there on my list of great books along with Byatt's Possession and another book that reminded me of this one: The God of Small Things.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read, 18 April 2010
By 
Colin Nicholson (St Leonards, NSW Australia) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I could not put this book down. Herta Muller at the height of her powers.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars great book!!, 17 Oct 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This book was used in a course i was studying and I'm so glad that it was introduced to me. The book is complicated at times as it jumps from memory and reality however Muller's main theme's are portrayed so well that you can't help wanting to know more. I loved this book but it may not be for everybody if your into European literature then this is a book I highly recommend!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3.0 out of 5 stars Clearly autobiographical and heartfelt, but all a bit wistful ..., 29 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Clearly autobiographical and heartfelt, but all a bit wistful and impressionistic. So often one senses that Nobel prizes for literature are awarded for subject matter not for style.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1.0 out of 5 stars Pure torture to read, 5 Oct 2014
A horrendous read; unclear, confusing, sloppy. Pure torture. I finished it only because I never give up. I should have.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

The Land of Green Plums: A Novel
The Land of Green Plums: A Novel by Herta Muller (Hardcover - 31 Dec 1996)
£15.89
Not in stock; order now and we'll deliver when available
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews