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Scissors, Paper, Stone by [Day, Elizabeth]
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Scissors, Paper, Stone Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Length: 257 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description

Review

'The relationship between the two women is very well done - tense, hinting all the time at some fatal incident ...truly disturbing, utterly believable ... sensitive, never prurient' (Margaret Forster)

'Elizabeth Day has written an absorbing and moving novel in which she has managed to convey the chronic damage that a father, wife and daughter may do to one another. Her writing is both delicate and direct, not an easy combination to effect, but she has pulled it off' (Elizabeth Jane Howard)

'A daring, absorbing and beautifully-written story of damage and betrayal, this is an exhilarating and deeply affecting first novel' (Jennie Rooney, author of Inside the Whale)

'Written with an imagination and emotional sensitivity that elevate it far beyond the clichés of middle-class melodrama, Scissors, Paper, Stone is a moving, terrifyingly real account of how love can be bent out of all recognisable shape.' (Observer)

Book Description

A frank and beautiful story of damage, survival and restoration from an exhilarating new literary voice

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 683 KB
  • Print Length: 257 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1408821656
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing; 1 edition (4 Jan. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1408807610
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408807613
  • ASIN: B004D4Z6J4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #175,150 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Both me and my sister thoroughly enjoyed this novel. I've read it in three days and I teach full time but couldn't wait to get back into it. The author has a way of describing thoughts and feelings that really make you feel total empathy with each character. I was able to picture this novel like watching a drama on TV and feel the tension between the characters as if I were in the story with them. I highly recommend it as a good read and will be lending it to my friends immediately. I feel sad to have finished it and at a loss as to how to find something equally gripping and absorbing. Buy it!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Anne Eliott, an attractive and intelligent, but inexperienced young woman meets Charles Redfern, tall, broad-shouldered and golden-haired, when they are both studying at Cambridge and thinks of him as a Greek god. When he proposes to her, Anne accepts immediately, despite advice from her girlfriend that Charles is 'uncontainable' and not the right person for her. Thirty four years later, locked in a bitterly unhappy marriage, Anne has lost her looks, her confidence and her self-respect, and is in danger of losing the affection of her only child, thirty-year-old Charlotte. When Charles is knocked off his bicycle and ends up in a hospital bed, lying in a coma, Anne and Charlotte are forced into spending time together at his bedside, and before long it becomes evident that both mother and daughter need to confront the fact that Charles is a cold, manipulative bully who has been a terrible husband and an even worse father. And as Charlotte tries to face the truth of her father's warped feelings towards her, and as she struggles to cope with her anger towards her mother for not protecting her, Charlotte's despair and grief begins to spill over into her relationship with Gabriel, her not-yet-divorced lover. (No spoilers, we learn all of this early on in the novel).

Elizabeth Day's disturbing, yet readable story of a dysfunctional family is beautifully written and the author has been brave in her choice of subject for a first novel. Anne's and Charlotte's situation is well-depicted by the author, although the intensity of the lives of the main protagonists overshadows the other characters in the story and Charlotte's boyfriend, Gabriel, comes across as rather one-dimensional and a little bit too good to be true - as does Anne's kind friend, Janet.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It's Wednesday evening and the middle of a working week . There are all sorts of jobs I should be doing , phone calls I should be making , clearing up I should be attempting. Instead I have sat here ignoring the chaos all around me and not able to move until I had finished this wonderful book. Such an insightful story so beautifully told .
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Format: Paperback
When Charles Redfern is knocked off his bicycle and lapses into a coma, his wife Anne calmly carries on preparing the casserole for the family's dinner, barley missing a beat as she adds her vegetables to the pot and leaves to simmer. The barely-concealed hostility of this simple action quietly ignites the rest of Elizabeth Day's absorbing first novel.

Day, best known for her work as an award-winning features writer for The Observer, has taken as her first subject the damage and betrayal of a family in crisis. As Charles lies prone and fallible in hospital, the relationship between his wife and their daughter Charlotte is thrust under an uncomfortable spotlight. The chip of ice in the heart of Graham Greene's best authors is likewise at the centre of this family triangle. Charles, for years the brute heart of the family, never veers into comic villainy, but is beautifully drawn, hovering precariously between a recognisable form of middle-class passive cruelty and sheer indifference. His behaviour, which has over time subtly and insidiously hardened and splintered Anne's youthful effervescence, is deftly and elegantly handled by Day. As the strained relationships are stripped away, the gradual and unsettling sense of unease builds to the novel's shocking climax which threatens to engulf and overwhelm the fragility of the characters, each craving a resolution that is seemingly always just out of reach.
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Day's first novel is a triumph; a rich and rewarding novel from an author who has created realistic and moving characters, and who never overplays the difficult balance between tenderness and trauma. The novel dips effortlessly between the dramatic and the poetic, and lingers on long in the reader's memory.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When a car accident places Charles in a coma, his wife Anne and daughter Charlotte are left to examine their relationships and the events that have led them to that point.

Initially, though the prose was elegant, this did strike me as a kitchen sink drama. There is an awful lot of analogy used in consecutive sentences but as they are all very original, useful analogies it is not too distracting. The tense conversations could be a little wearing but could be excused due to the unraveling back-story. Many of the situations seemed so familiar that it was almost clichéd but that is always a risk when you are reading something that is an realistic portrayal of a normal life. Anne was a very difficult character to sympathise with and I was a little disappointed with one moment right at the end of the novel, which seemed to throw a token explanation out as to why Charles behaved the way he did. These points aside, it is Charlotte's emotional turmoil that made this novel something else, the description of her conflicted feelings and how she tries to cope felt painfully accurate. Overall, it was sometimes a difficult novel to read but there was a lot to admire in it's execution, language and delicacy.
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