The Dogs and the Wolves Paperback – 7 Oct 2010
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"Written with tremendous assurance and finesse, The Dogs and the Wolves is an outstanding achievement of European fiction" (Sunday Times)
"The pleasure of this fine novel lies in its depiction of a doomed love affair... Némirovsky's exquisite descriptions of character reveal a brilliantly sharp eye" (Daily Telegraph)
"Nemirovsky was incapable of producing anything less than an enchanting novel. She has an irresistible talent for creating character and incident which makes this story as much a page-turner as anything she has written" (Carmen Callil Guardian)
"Nemirovksy is a deeply engaged observer of her characters, and her depiction of the inner lives of both Jews and Gentiles in Sandra Smith's admirable translation of this exquisitely detailed novel, has the fine, authentic ring of artistic truth" (Sunday Telegraph)
"She elegantly uses traditional orchestration, which makes her works, for all their weighty concerns, universally accessible and stirringly romantic" (Independent)
A wonderful, panoramic novel and an achingly poignant love story from the bestselling author of Suite Française.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
At the heart of it is Ada, a young painter who, as a poor Jewish child in Kiev, with her cousin Ben, take refuge one day in the house of their rich relations; there, she encounters the boy, Harry, who, though embarrassed by her then, will come to be the love of her life. Because of pogroms, they all move to settle in Paris. Time moves on, Ada lives on her own, becoming a successful minor painter, dreaming of Harry. He, meanwhile, heir to a banking dynasty, has married Laurence and they have a son, but deep down he's not happy. He finds himself drawn to two paintings of Ada's in a bookshop, and by this means comes back into her life. A love triangle is formed in which two kinds of love are contrasted: the domestic, the kindly, the convenient one with his wife, the elemental, passionate one with Ada. Time moves on, and the fragile triangle is shattered by the prospect of a banking crisis which would ruin Harry's life forever. Ada alone, by making a supreme sacrifice, can save him... The last chapter has her deported to an East European country where she gives birth to her son, surrounded by loving neighbours, her unselfish love rewarded with a new kind of happiness and a sense of a new future opening up, albeit without Harry.Read more ›
This is a fairly blunt statement by Nemirovsky of pre-first world war society where money determines your place in the social hierarchy for Jew and non-Jew alike. Nemirovsky first imprints the stereotype in the Jewish society in the Ukraine; the protective, moneyed establishment already in their fine houses, where money now accummulates for little extra effort; the striving middle class desperately trying to join the establishment, and for whom doing a deal and getting one over on your competitor is all that counts; the poor working class, where artisan skills are the best hope of eking out an existence and escaping the ghetto. Then, when the scene moves to Paris, French society seems little different and, to make matters yet more difficult, is unwelcoming to poor Jewish exiles.
I found Nemirovsky less passionately involved with this novel, more clinical in her observation, more prepared in a way to simply report and not analyse or comment, an exercise in writing just to keep the juices flowing. Some passages just involving the children are too formal, naive and disengaging, whereas the exchanges between adults display a knowing insight into what lies beneath the veneer of society. It is a good read, just not quite her best.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A deep book. I was very aware while reading it of the fate of Irene Nemirovsky. In some ways it was prescient. A good read and a good ending.Published 3 months ago by Mrs Ann C
Beginning in the early 1900s in the Jewish quarter of a Ukranian city (most probably Kiev), Irène Némirovsky's 'The Dogs and the Wolves' centres on Ada, a motherless... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Susie B
Nemirovsky really does write beautifully and kudos must go to such a seamless translation too, too often the translator is overlooked. Read morePublished 7 months ago by keen reader
this is a shockingly bad novel from the author of the lovely Suite Francais. the characters are all stick figures with impenetrable motives, great yawning gaps occur in the... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Zangiku
Item arrived on time and was well packaged, Would buy again.Published 9 months ago by Denice Tinson
I dare you not to be moved by this story. A page turner where the characters if they weren't real, they could have been by Némirovsky's writing. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Audrey Eager