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Home: The Story of Everyone Who Ever Lived in Our House Paperback – 4 Apr 2005

3.5 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial (4 April 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007148232
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007148233
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 3 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 333,560 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

'Part memoir, part historical fiction, part sleuth-like detective story: it works on every level. The people she unearths are as vivid as characters in a novel, and it makes you think about your own home in a way you never did before' Esther Freud, Telegraph Books of the Year

'”Home” is as absorbing – and often entertaining – as any thriller … The result is a triumph.' Observer

'The idea behind “Home” is beautiful in its simplicity … An engrossing read.' Guardian

'Masterly and moving … A fascinating exercise in social history.' Daily Telegraph

'Pure magic … A wonderful book.' Philip Hensher, Spectator

About the Author

Julie Myerson was born in Nottingham in 1960, read English at Bristol University and worked for the National Theatre and Walker Books before becoming a full-time writer. She has published five novels one of which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2003. She and her partner Jonathan have three children, all of whom have grown up in the house in Clapham.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
i like julie myerson`s work, and was not dissapointed with this book. I liked how she mixed fact and fiction ; finding out who lived in her house, then making a fiction account of how she imagined they would have talked and behaved. She found out things about some people that she never imagined and i liked the insight into other peoples lives. Very original idea....
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Format: Paperback
I too was really surprised by the negative reviews for this book - I have recommended it to so many people since reading it. I loved the whole premise of the book - that Julie Myerson sets out to find out all she can about the previous inhabitants of her home - and found myself totally drawn in to her investigation. Beautifully written and really well put together. It made me want to delve into the history and mysteries of my own home!
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Format: Paperback
I thought this was a fantastic idea for a book, and just reading about it inspired me to start finding out who had lived in my house as I live in a very similar house in a similar area of London. Sadly I found it surprisingly disappointing. I wanted a factual account of who the people were and what they did, especially during WW2 - which was hardly mentioned. I can see the thought process behind the whole imaginary story thing, but it just didn't work. The author is a novelist and obviously wanted to make her characters come alive, but I wanted to know what they actually did, not what the author thought they might have done.
I think also there was far too much about her own family and one paragraph after another about the people who frequent the Family Records dept etc. - who cares about them?! I also think the book was poorly edited and should have contained a clear family tree of the people in the house at the beginning of the book for reference as the narrative was confusing and rambling. I couldn't work out where some of the families were connected. I wonder if the author herself knew!
Perhaps the book could have benefitted from some better and deeper research and it would have been more satisfying to have contained more real information about the interesting people from the past and less about the author and her children.
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Format: Paperback
I read this book some time ago, but have just got round to browsing these reviews, and am very surprised that 'Home' has been rated so poorly. I thoroughly enjoyed it, found it interesting and insightful and had no problem with the way in which it was written. Previous reviewers seem to have wanted a chronological history, and Myerson could of course have taken the approach of the more recently published 'The House By The Thames' and done a straight 'the house was built in 18** and the first occupants were the X family who lived there for Y number of years and then the Zs moved in....' but she has tried to be a little more ambitious and , to my mind, it pays off very well. Some seem to have had a problem with too much detail about the current occupants, and with Julie delving into her own past - but it is subtitled 'The Story of Everyone Who Ever Lived In Our House', and that does include the Myersons, surely? I have generally found that Julie Myerson's fiction flatters to deceive, but I think she has got this one spot-on.
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Format: Paperback
I've just finished this book and loved it.All houses have a story and Julie Myerson's idea to follow her house's story is a brilliant one.
Out and out family historians will find some of her narrative a tad difficult to follow and I could have done with a little less of her own family, but I can see why she wanted to include them: after all it is their story too.
There is proof here that every family has an unmentioned story, love, grief, joy and tragedy... even a black sheep.... all within four walls.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Although I enjoyed this recount of the research into the house and its occupants, I found it to be quite complex and repetitive. While recognising that this is a reflection of the task, I felt the author of might have considered handling this aspect of the writing in a different way. Nonetheless, it is an interesting account, despite this and the flights of fancy, which are, at least, acknowledged as such.
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Format: Paperback
I think I must have been reading a different book to the other reviewers. I thought this book was great - really interesting and a riveting read. It's certainly not "unreadable". It's the story of the author, Julie Myerson, tracing all the people who have lived in her house and therefore this includes herself and her family, which I think is a necessary part of the process. She also revisits the houses she has lived in throughout her life and I expect that thinking about the former occupants of her current home started her thinking about her own past. It certainly started me thinking about where I have lived and who might have lived in my present home.
She does embellish things somewhat but after all, she is a novelist and she is trying to make the book interesting and readable. Her embellishments are largely based on facts with her just padding out what she already knows. A book that just lists the bare facts would not be particularly interesting to the general reader.
I also looked forward to reading about her visits to the various archives and records offices where she found out what was in Wills, birth certificates etc.
The only thing that I would agree with the other reviewers about is that there should have been some sort of list showing who was who. Many times I found myself flicking back to passages and pictures trying to remember who was related to who and how.
Overall though, I loved this book and would highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in history and ordinary people.
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