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Deep in the Shade of Paradise - a Novel Hardcover – 27 Mar 2002

3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Co.; 1 edition (27 Mar. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393020207
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393020205
  • Product Dimensions: 16.8 x 3.6 x 24.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 8,730,321 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

John Dufresne is the author of six novels, including No Regrets, Coyote. Among other honors, he has received a Guggenheim Fellowship and is a professor in the MFA program at Florida International University. He lives in Dania Beach, Florida. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
JOHN DUFRESNE'S "DEEP IN THE SHADE OF PARADISE"
Reviewed by John Schacht

Welcome to John Dufresne's Louisiana backwater, Shiver-de-Freeze (population 375), where folks sport handles like "Jinx," "Comfort," and "Ferlin," declare their amorous intentions on the local water tower, say things like "yonder," "fetched," and "you might could have," and refer to their kin as being "high tempered," "weak in the intellectuals," or "economical with the truth."
Yes, Dufresne's new novel, "Deep in the Shade of Paradise," is chock-full of the homespun cornpone and magical touches that made his first full-length, "Louisiana Power & Light," a darling among critics on both sides of the Mason Dixon line. Sadly, his new work, a sequel of sorts, does not build on the success of the previous story but instead bogs down in the author's inability to keep out of his colorful characters' way.
"Deep in the Shade of Paradise" ostensibly chronicles the eve of Grisham Loudermilk's marriage to Ariane Thevenot. But Grisham's cousin Adlai - who falls in love with the bride-to-be -- and the groom's philandering ways threaten to derail the wedding. Adlai's reckless crush is conducted even as his mother passes away; his father struggles with the onset of Alzheimer's; the priest renounces his celibacy; his cousin gives birth; and a pair of conjoined twins fall for 11-year-old Boudou, an eidetic who happens to be the last of Fontana clan, the "most executed white family" in Louisiana history (and the protagonists of Dufresne's first novel).
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3.9 out of 5 stars 13 reviews
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is one clever story 5 Jun. 2002
By J. Fercho - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I can honestly say that I have never read anything quite like Deep in The Shade of Paradise! It's the story of a large quirky Southern family as they gather together for a wedding, that and so much more. There is so much going on in this tale that it's almost impossible to describe it in few words. The characters are beyond unique, each one a treasure, and with names like you've never heard. The author keeps jumping into the narrative with his running commentary which you would think would become annoying after awhile, but only adds to the charm and hilarity of the story. This novel is so clever and imaginative that I found myself smiling all the way through. It would be impossible to give this any less than 5 stars!
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spectacular 23 Aug. 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
How Dufresne can accomplish so much in the space of so few pages is beyone me. THIS should be the book you BUY and read this year. BUY it, because, I promise, you'll want to read it again and again. It affected me as THE SHIPPING NEWS did, with characters so memorable and plot so rich and believable, that I was not content to read it only once.
15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DEEP IN THE SHADE OF PARADISE 1 Feb. 2002
By cynthia wondolowski - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
THIS IS BY FAR THE MOST MOVING, LAUGH OUT LOUD BOOK I HAVE EVER READ. I FELL IN LOVE WITH THESE QUIRKY CHARACTERS. THEY BECAME A PART OF MY LIFE. IT'S HARD TO PUT THIS BOOK DOWN AND YET I DIDN'T WANT THE STORY TO END. I STILL THINK ABOUT BOUDOU, EARLENE, ADLAI AND MIRANDA (TO NAME A FEW.) AND WONDER WHAT THEY ARE DOING TODAY. I MISS ROYCE AND BENNING. BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN. DUFRESNE LEAVES YOU WANTING MORE.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A GREAT BOOK 19 Mar. 2002
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
The reading I've done in the first fifty years of my life has been in search of a book like DEEP IN THE SHADE OF PARADISE by John Dufresne. Now, the remaining years of my life will be spent trying to find another book like it.
Trying to describe the book is like trying to explain MOBY DICK. ("Well, it's about a whale but it's not about a whale, it's really about everything.") DEEP IN THE SHADE OF PARADISE is simply a great book.
I forced myself to limit reading to one chapter a day to make the book last. It was hard because you become so involved with the characters you are compelled to fly through the pages. At the same time you know if you read too quickly you'll miss some great sentences that deserved to be carefully and thoughtfully read.
Dufresne has guaranteed that whenever I hear the word "plot" I will always think of the blissful Pythias. An extremely funny book.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Would've Been 5 Starts if not for Louisiana Power & Light 18 Jan. 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
It took me a while to finally get around to reading "Deep in the Shade of Paradise" but am I ever glad I did! The characters are so quirky, colorful and yet insightful. Dufresne is a master Southern storyteller. This is one of those books that you think would make a good movie or play because it's SO AWESOME and you realize that the reason it's so awesome is that more is felt, dreamt, and imagined than said.
As I said in my review title, this would've earned 5 stars if it wasn't for Louisiana Power & Light. The only downside to this book is that when I finished the book I didn't find myself missing the characters as much as I did when I finished LP&L.
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