The Notebook: The Proof ; the Third Lie : Three Novels Paperback – 23 Jun 1997
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From the Back Cover
These three internationally acclaimed novels have confirmed Agota Kristof's reputation as one of the most provocative exponents of new-wave European fiction. With all the stark simplicity of a fractured fairy tale, the trilogy tells the story of twin brothers, Claus and Lucas, locked in an agonizing bond that becomes a gripping allegory for the forces that have divided "brothers" in much of Europe since World War II. Kristof's postmodern saga begins with The Notebook, in which the brothers are children, lost in a country torn apart by conflict, who must learn every trick of evil and cruelty merely to survive. In The Proof, Lucas is challenged to prove his own identity and the existence of his missing brother, a defector to the "other side". The Third Lie, which closes the trilogy, is a biting parable of Eastern and Western Europe today and a deep exploration into the nature of identity, storytelling, and the truths and untruths that lie at the heart of them all.
About the Author
David Watson is Professor of Higher Education Management at the the Institute of Education, University of London.
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Top Customer Reviews
It is simply written with very short chapters, but dont let this put you off there is so much squeezed into each, some of it funny, some sad and some so shocking, disturbing and/or bonkers that I frequently had to put the book down before guiltly picking it up again for another fix.
The next two installments follows them into adulthood and the writing changes as a result with longer more detailed chapters but it is still an easy and gripping read.
I don't want to say to much more as to much info will spoil what this amazing book has in store - but believe me this is a rollercoaster of a ride and is as entertaining as it is harrowing, this is definately a book I will be reading again. Agota Kristof has a brilliant talent and it is a huge frustration that this is the only one of her books translated into english - I need more!
10 years on, I read it again... I'm now in my early 30s, and reading this book again actually gave me a different angle of life!
Agota Kristof is so original, I was constantly surprised and shocked by how far she was pushing the boundary. In the "Third Lie", I was constantly trying to figure out which one was the truth and which was a lie... it was written in such a clever way that everything was so weird and awkward, but somehow it seems to make sense!
This is such a little gem... this book definitely deserves much more attention and positive reviews!
It's written, as they all are, from a first person narrator viewpoint. What's remarkable is the pure clarity of voice and language and - most importantly - the absence of judgement and conventional, socially acceptable behaviour.
With the onslaught of WW2, in an unnamed Hungary, identical twin brothers C(K)laus and Lucas record an objective narrative of each day or days of significance that each agrees must be dependent solely on fact. Any emotional, moral or adjectival judgement or even sentiment in their respective stories is eliminated by the brothers.
Only once both approve of each other's handwritten version (the day's events being transcribed by each on a daily basis and every script is swapped between the brothers to be evaluated by each in turn), the best one (ie objective, without judgement) is then transcribed and only then written up in The Notebook.
Their purity of purpose and determination to lead lives grounded in their own way, extends to them deciding to strip themselves of emotion as they learn to disregard and be invulnerable to the devastating consequences of war. They also choose to act on occasion in ways that threaten and harm those who harm others, and always based upon their own distinctive, yet always logical, moral code. As a metaphor for the impact of war on children it's a powerful and compelling one.Read more ›
I first read this in 1994; I'm extremely happy to see it finally in print again, and with the two sequels thrown in as well. A terrific and engaging novel!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I was bought this trilogy for as a present and was throughly captivated. Months after finishing, I still think about the books daily. Read morePublished 15 months ago by J. Griffin
I originally read The Notebook when a new publisher republished it (written in the 50s) and I just had to read the trilogy. Read morePublished on 31 May 2014 by Emmabemma
Starts off a bit in Lord of the Flies territory, and throws some interesting shapes as a commentary on the nature of identity.Published on 3 Mar. 2014 by Mr. Brian Carlin
I don't usually write reviews of books/music etc, but I felt compelled to say to whoever will listen: READ THIS BOOKPublished on 26 Nov. 2013 by Terry Grant