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97 Reviews
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome back Anna Madrigal!
The latest (ninth) and, reportedly, last in the wonderful 'Tales of The City' series, 'Days of Anna Madrigal' sees the benevolent and quirky former landlady of 28 Barbary Lane now aged 92, frail in body, but still alert in mind. The cast of surviving friends are here - Michael Tolliver, Brian Hawkins, Mary Ann Singleton - all older but still ready for an adventure. They...
Published 9 months ago by Catherine Cavendish

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but not gripping
Having read (a number of times!) the previous books in this series, I came away from this one feeling slightly disappointed. It didn't seem to possess the 'compelling edge' of previous books, felt might 'lighter' in weight and could not, in my view, stand alone as a book in its own right.
Published 5 months ago by S. O'SULLIVAN


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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome back Anna Madrigal!, 9 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Days of Anna Madrigal (Tales of the City series Book 9) (Kindle Edition)
The latest (ninth) and, reportedly, last in the wonderful 'Tales of The City' series, 'Days of Anna Madrigal' sees the benevolent and quirky former landlady of 28 Barbary Lane now aged 92, frail in body, but still alert in mind. The cast of surviving friends are here - Michael Tolliver, Brian Hawkins, Mary Ann Singleton - all older but still ready for an adventure. They join 60,000 revellers who build a city to last just a week in the desert.

For Anna though, she has reached a point in her life when it's time to revisit her past, left behind 75 years earlier when, as a troubled and confused boy, something devastating happened which made her run away from the whorehouse run by her mother.

Armistead Maupin's writing is, as always, sublime - with witty, quirky dialogue and scenes that make you laugh, or even cry. Meeting up with the characters again is like welcoming old friends back, and when I turned the final page, it was with a lump in my throat.

Thoroughly recommended.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars simply wonderful, 5 Feb 2014
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as preparation for this final book in the series i reread the two most recent books and was surprised how much more i adored them this time around, if you are new to the books, then you have to start at the beginning to fully get into this wonderful saga of Annas logical family.
The latest book is a fittingly perfect way to end the series although lets hope Mr Maupin decides to add more very soon, as the newer characters are just as great as the old originals. Its wonderful to catch up with them and their lives and in this book some names from the past reappear, and we finally get to find out about Anna's childhood growing up at the Blue Moon Lodge as she confronts the secrets she ran away from.
The book had me laughing and crying and i couldnt put it down until it was finished, highly recommended (in fact essential reading for fans) its beautifully written, uplifting and charming, and about people who utterly understand giving and receiving love.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fitting end to the Tales, 8 Mar 2014
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I had read the first six books about 20 years ago and forgotten just how much I had loved the characterisation, the speakable dialogue and interaction. I'd been sad when it seemed that that was the end of them. Then a friend gave me a signed copy of Michael Tolliver Lives a few years ago. Life had moved on since I'd first read them and. to my shame, it sat unread for those years. Then I heard that The Days etc was being released and I thought, hell, I'd better read about Mouse.

Well, I devoured it and it was like being reunited with old friends you hadn't seen for a while but were so comfortable with, you could pick right up where you left off! It was such a life affirming book.

So, ordered the last 2 about Mary Ann and Anna.

This book is really for the fans but SO glad he wrote it. I read a lot of SF which has played with gender issues, like being able to change genders over a course of a long life time (Iain Banks and others) or aliens who might have dual gender. Anna Madrigal was the first time in mainstream fiction that I had read such a positive portrayal of a transgender person.

Like Mr Maupin, I have been grappling with the changes in the LBGT world: non binary, gender queer, and what actually makes a man or a woman. He really seems to have got it!

I think I spent most of the last 30 pages or so in tears but like MIchael Tolliver Lives, it is still a life affirming book.

Will just have to go back to the beginning and start reading them again!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars End of days?, 13 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Days of Anna Madrigal (Tales of the City series Book 9) (Kindle Edition)
Over 35 years Armistead Maupin has followed the lives of the people we first met in San Francisco in 1978. This alone is an achievement. This, the ninth and maybe the final instalment, is set at the Burning Man festival, which has grown and developed as the LBGT community has emerged, like a butterfly from a chrysalis. The LBGT community may not yet be mainstream America, but has a stronger place than when he began writing. We can see that in Cam and Mitchell in Modern Family. Perhaps this sequence of novels has contributed.
I cannot say whether Days is better or worse than any of the other 8 volumes. The author continues to combine scenes of explicit physical sexuality with intense emotion. His characters confront the same heartaches and highs as are elsewhere portrayed in conventional sexual relationships. Is the readership now wider than LBGT or has the presence, confidence and numbers of non-straight people increased. Probably both.
Earlier books seemed - in my memory - to look askance at some of the fringe fashions and behaviours portrayed. Now I no longer detect anything other than enthusiasm as evidenced by his description of the Burning Man festival, "life itself but now bigger and slicker".
However, I do feel that the characters and the author are somewhat cocooned in their sexuality and in their sexual lives. Princess Diana is namechecked, but Barack Obama is not mentioned. The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are barely noticed. The battle for wider healthcare provision is not signified - despite the ills and illnesses of his aging cast. Money never seems to be a problem - the global financial crisis seems not to impact. This is more Jane Austen than Charles Dickens.
The cast seem generally to be "good people" - there have been few dark characters. The philosophy seems to be - all you need is love. It will get us through everything. But he writes so well it is hard to be churlish. He has an ear for the telling phrase "You don't win..You get to the end" is an example. The set pieces are wonderfully constructed. The metaphor of the monarch butterfly- no spoilers here - is clever and, almost, persuasive.
Maybe there will be no more tales from the city. If so Anna and the others in the Madrigal family have gone out as they came out - in style.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tales of the City tinged with nostalgia, 4 Mar 2014
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I have been a fan of Tales of the City since they were published. I have reread them many times. I enjoyed The Days of Anna Madrigal very much, reading it in one sitting but with a sense of melancholy which I suppose has also been there since Michael Tolliver Lives and Mary Anne in the Autumn. Perhaps it is a melancholy for the passing of time. Otherwise it would have earned five stars.
Maupin creates characters that you know and care about. Their foibles and weaknesses you understand and matter to you. their dreams are often yours too. Anna Madrigal is as enchanting as she ever was. it is a privilege to have known her.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Anna Madrigal splendid till the end, 10 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Days of Anna Madrigal (Tales of the City series Book 9) (Kindle Edition)
Reading The Days of Anna Madrigal was like attending a family reunion. Armistead brings us bang up-to-date with our favourite ex inhabitants of Barbery Lane. A fitting g farewell to Mrs Madrigal.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I cried throughout...., 3 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Days of Anna Madrigal (Tales of the City series Book 9) (Kindle Edition)
Maybe one for the fans, maybe not exquisite fiction, but I'm a huge fan and I absolutely adored this. Lots of beautiful moments and a lovely ending to the series.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars more tales, more!, 30 Jan 2014
By 
Paul S. Gibbs "Paulie" (lincs, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Days of Anna Madrigal (Tales of the City series Book 9) (Kindle Edition)
I loved it, Being surprised, comforted, horrified in turns.

It did feel like it just ...stopped mid-chapter but yeah. Home!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another great installment, 1 Feb 2014
By 
Eleanor (Oxford, England) - See all my reviews
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"The Days of Anna Madrigal" is the ninth Tales of the City book, and I'm sure readers who have come this far are not going to stop now: so this review is preaching to the converted. Armistead Maupin's books have given me an immense amount of pleasure (as well as tears) over the years and this one is no exception.

Anna Madrigal is now a frail ninety-two year old and her thoughts turn to her childhood in a Nevada whorehouse, and the young boy she once was. As she returns to the desert with unfinished business weighing on her heart, the other characters are making their way to the Burning Man festival where various epiphanies await. Once again there is plenty of coincidence and serendipity, but loose ends are also allowed to dangle. The result is a tremendously enjoyable read, and I read cursing the fact that the unread pages were diminishing so quickly. I was sad to say goodbye to this 'logical' family.
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5.0 out of 5 stars I'm so sad it's over, 26 Oct 2014
By 
Mrs. K. A. Wheatley "katywheatley" (Leicester, UK) - See all my reviews
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This is, according to Armistead Maupin, the last of the novels that make up the Tales of the City series. I was delighted when he started writing them again after a long break. Now I'm sad all over again. I do not want this to be the last of the books, but the ending pretty much ties up all the loose ends from all the previous books and makes me think that this time there won't be a last minute come back to cheer me up.

You need to have read all the previous books in the series to make any sense of this one, so there is absolutely no point in me rehashing any of the plot here. If you're intrigued go ahead and start with the first book. You won't be disappointed. They remain some of the finest books I've ever read.

I very much enjoyed exploring Anna's past in this book, although I'd have liked to have spent a little more time with Mouse and Brian. When all the characters are so loveable it's hard not to feel cheated out of their company.
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