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So Many Ways to Begin by [McGregor, Jon]
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So Many Ways to Begin Kindle Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews

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Length: 388 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Product Description

Review

'My book of the year. A magical, spellbinding, profound novel' Daily Telegraph on IF NOBODY SPEAKS OF REMARKABLE THINGS 'A dream of a novel ... It is not every novelist who has the gift, as Jon McGregor does, of reminding his readers of that heaven in a wild flower, that infinity in a grain of sand' The Times on IF NOBODY SPEAKS OF REMARKABLE THINGS 'Extraordinary ... McGregor's triumphant prose poem of ordinariness has a very contemporary kind of spirituality about it' Sunday Times on IF NOBODY SPEAKS OF REMARKABLE THINGS 'The work of a burning new talent ... These individual, unremarkable lives are netted up onto the page with an extraordinary clarity, compassion and immediacy' Daily Mail on IF NOBODY SPEAKS OF REMARKABLE THINGS

Tom Boncza-Tomaszewski, Independent on Sunday

`This is a wonderful novel; low-key but beautifully paced,
scattered with extraordinarily intense moments'

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 801 KB
  • Print Length: 388 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Paperbacks; 1 edition (4 Jun. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007M83B68
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #229,732 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Having been utterly captivated by Jon McGregor's prose style in 'If nobody speaks of remarkable things', I opened 'So many ways to begin' with delicious anticipation. It does not disappoint. Whilst it does not have the instant panache of the beginning pages of his first novel, it beguiles and builds in a different way. The story of David Carter's journey through life works its way to and fro through memorabilia, building an intimate portrait of his marriage,his childhood passions and his not so brilliant career, and his search for his real birth mother. McGregor's prose is beautiful,poetic. I particularly enjoyed the interposing of alternative thoughts and behaviours that may or may not have happened, at key moments. They make you pause and consider, without stopping the flow of narrative or feeling heavy-handed. A lovely, lyrical book about everyday life.
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Format: Paperback
I loved Jon McGregor's critically acclaimed debut so it was with nervous excitement that I awaited this follow-up. It is a different book: meandering but with the same clarity of expression which made `If Nobody Speaks...' such a privilege to read. The story follows Museum-Curator and adopted son David Carter through the course of his life. It is at once a paean to forgotten times and a celebration of the course of post-war British history. Through mementos from his life, David gradually integrates the past with the present and carries the reader along with the persistent tug of time. In many ways it reminded me of John Banville's Booker winning novel `The Sea'. It has that same longing, the same concepts of remembering and forgetting. But this is a superior novel. Jon McGregor is effortlessly poetic; this is easy-to-read and full of everyday occurrences rendered with the author's razor-sharp observation. Jon McGregor is an emerging gem of an author and this book will see his reputation continue to rise.
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Format: Hardcover
I loved "If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things" and rushed to buy this book as soon as it was published. It didn't disappoint. It is easier to understand and has a real "unputdownable" quality; the characters and their lives are beautifully drawn and revealed gradually as McGregor "drip feeds" his reader using literary, unpretentious language. I particularly like the way he withholds judgement or blame in this novel, thus posing hidden questions for his readers to answer. I found this to be a sad book in many ways, but also filled with hope, a particularly good choice for anyone born in the 40's or 50's perhaps!
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By Keris Nine TOP 500 REVIEWER on 19 Jun. 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Proof that 'If Nobody Speaks Of Remarkable Things' was no one-off (how could writing that good possibly be a fluke), 'So Many Ways to Begin' again deals with ordinary people leading ordinary lives, but bearing the weight of events in the past that deeply mark their lives. The style is again fractured in time, non-linear, but through its analogy of a museum of mementos, it slowly and simply builds up a solid, authentic and deeply moving exhibit of family-life in post-war Britain.

For David, a young man in Coventry who has always dreamed of being a museum curator, a structured life where everything can be organised, labelled and its provenance traced, the discovery that he has been adopted as a child upsets the stable view he once had of the world. The author contrasts David's relationship with loving parents who aren't his own with his wife Eleanor's strict upbringing in Aberdeen, and charts the emotional journey both of them have to make together to understand who they are and how their upbringing has shaped their lives.

McGregor's prose is deceptively simple, but bears deep emotional force in those well-chosen words and situations, raising them to the level of pure artistry, forging poetic and subtle resonances to social behaviour and familial relationships, to the secrets people keep, the emotional weights they carry, and the impact they have on their lives and on those of the people around them.
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Format: Hardcover
I've just finished the book and I have to say its the best one I've read in a while. It follows the story of David who was given up for adoption during the war and finds out by accident when he is in his twenties. It's a story about his beautiful romance with his wife and their family life together and also a story of their relationships with their parents. David's anger at his adoptive parents for deceiving him and his search for his natural mother are beautifully written and gripping. His wife, Eleanor and her volatile relationship with her mother that she cannot wait to escape and the effects it has on her in later life are truly heartbreaking.

A beautiful story, it had me crying at stages, though by no means is it depressing. You really get to identify with the characters and feel for them and I really felt involved in the story. The main theme of the book is family life, in all the different ways it happens, but I think my favourite parts were those about David and Eleanor's relationship over the years.

I have loved both of the authors book, this one is much easier to read and a far more gripping story. I intend to read any other books he writes. I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Heartwarming and a very positive book, a really lovely, well written story.
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