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Some Hope Hardcover – 13 Jun 1994

3.9 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: William Heinemann Ltd; First Edition edition (13 Jun. 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0434734543
  • ISBN-13: 978-0434734542
  • Product Dimensions: 22.5 x 14 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,747,011 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

‘Humor, pathos, razor-sharp judgement, pain, joy and everything in between. The Melrose novels are a masterwork for the twenty-first century, by one of our greatest prose stylists’ Alice Sebold

‘A memorable tour de force’ New York Times Book Review

‘I’ve loved Edward St Aubyn’s Patrick Melrose novels. Read them all, now’ David Nicholls

‘St Aubyn’s Melrose series slices and dices morality with prose so chiselled and a narrative so intense that the hairs on the back of your neck stand up’ Geordie Greig, Evening Standard

‘A masterpiece. Edward St Aubyn is a writer of immense gifts’ Patrick McGrath

'The wit of Wilde, the lightness of Wodehouse, the waspishness of Waugh. A joy' Zadie Smith

‘Perhaps the most brilliant English novelist of his generation’ Alan Hollinghurst

‘Humor, pathos, razor-sharp judgement, pain, joy and everything in between. The Melrose novels are a masterwork for the 21st century, by one of our greatest prose stylists’ Alice Sebold

‘From the very first lines I was completely hooked . . . By turns witty, moving and an intense social comedy, I wept at the end but wouldn’t dream of giving away the totally unexpected reason’ Antonia Fraser, Sunday Telegraph

‘Blackly comic, superbly written fiction . . . His style is crisp and light; his similes exhilarating in their accuracy . . . St Aubyn writes with luminous tenderness of Patrick’s love for his sons’ Caroline Moore, Sunday Telegraph

‘Wonderful caustic wit . . . Perhaps the very sprightliness of the prose – its lapidary concision and moral certitude – represents the cure for which the characters yearn. So much good writing is in itself a form of health’ Edmund White, Guardian

‘St Aubyn puts an entire family under a microscope, laying bare all its painful, unavoidable complexities. At once epic and intimate, appalling and comic, the novels are masterpieces, each and every one’ Maggie O’Farrell

‘Beautifully written, excruciatingly funny and also very tragic’ Mariella Frostrup, Sky Magazine

‘His prose has an easy charm that masks a ferocious, searching intellect. As a sketcher of character, his wit ― whether turned against pointless members of the aristocracy or hopeless crack dealers ― is ticklingly wicked. As an analyser of broken minds and tired hearts he is as energetic, careful and creative as the perfect shrink. And when it comes to spinning a good yarn, whether over the grand scale or within a single page of anecdote, he has a natural talent for keeping you on the edge of your seat’ Melissa Katsoulis, The Times

‘The Patrick Melrose novels can be read as the navigational charts of a mariner desperate not to end up in the wretched harbor from which he embarked on a voyage that has led in and out of heroin addiction, alcoholism, marital infidelity and a range of behaviors for which the term ‘self-destructive’ is the mildest of euphemisms. Some of the most perceptive, elegantly written and hilarious novels of our era. . . Remarkable’ Francine Prose, New York Times

‘Irony courses through these pages like adrenaline . . . Patrick’s intelligence processes his predicaments into elegant, lucid, dispassionate, near-aphoristic formulations . . . Brimming with witty flair, sardonic perceptiveness and literary finesse’ Peter Kemp, Sunday Times

‘A humane meditation on lives blighted by the sins of the previous generation. St Aubyn remains among the cream of British novelists’ Sunday Times

‘The main joy of a St Aubyn novel is the exquisite clarity of his prose, the almost uncanny sense he gives that, in language as in mathematical formulae, precision and beauty invariably point to truth . . . Characters in St Aubyn novels are hyper-articulate, and the witty dialogue is here, as ever, one of the chief joys’ Suzi Feay, Financial Times

‘The darkest possible comedy about the cruelty of the old to the young, vicious and excruciatingly honest. It opened my eyes to a whole realm of experience I have never seen written about. That’s the mark of a masterpiece’ The Times

'One of the most amazing reading experiences I've had in a decade.' Michael Chabon, LA Times --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Review

'The wit of Wilde, the lightness of Wodehouse, the waspishness of Waugh. A joy.' (Zadie Smith)

'Humour, pathos, razor-sharp judgement, pain, joy and everything in between. The Melrose novels are a masterwork for the 21st century, by one of our greatest prose stylists.' (Alice Sebold)

'The Melrose novels are remarkable – ferociously funny, painfully acute and exhilaratingly written. A brilliantly controlled story of a life sent out of control.' (The Sunday Times)

'Our purest living prose stylist.' (The Guardian)

'St Aubyn’s prose has an easy charm that masks a ferocious, searching intellect. One of the finest writers of his generation.' (The Times) --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By S Riaz HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 20 Oct. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
"Some Hope" is the third part of The Patrick Melrose Trilogy, the first two parts being "Never Mind" and the second "Bad News". When we first meet Patrick in "Never Mind" he is five years old, living in the South of France with his cruel and spiteful father and his alcoholic mother. In "Bad News" Patrick is twenty two and a hopeless drug addict, and the book is set during a weekend in New York when Patrick goes to collect his fathers ashes.

In this third book, "Some Hope", Patrick is now thirty. Having spent years suffering from drug addiction, he is now clean, but has no career (despite a sudden and disturbing need to obtain an income) and has split from the girl he was supposed to marry. The three books together are excellent and you will rarely find better writing anywhere or from anyone. This, third volume, takes place before and during a party and contains many characters that have appeared in the previous two books (they should be read in order preferably, in order to make sense).

The cast of snobbish and unbearable characters all converging on a country house, in which Princess Margaret is the guest of honour, coincides with Patrick's attempt to make sense of his life so far and to make peace with the memory of his father. The prose is exquisite and, although most of the characters are thoroughly unpleasant and often downright nasty, you find that you care what happens to Patrick Melrose and what will become of him. The sense of elitism from a less likeable group of people is hard to imagine and the thought of having to suffer such unbearable company would make anyone grateful they had no links to the aristocracy! For those interested, there are two further volumes, Mother's Milk and At Last.
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By Wynne Kelly TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 3 Dec. 2012
Format: Paperback
This is the continuing story of Patrick Melrose and the third part of the Some Hope trilogy. Patrick is now a recovering addict and trying to make sense of his life. Many of the characters from the previous books reappear - usually with different partners. Just as in Never Mind and Bad News this is packed with interesting observations and wry comments. Having checked into a hotel Patrick reads a notice at his bedside: " `To avoid disappointment, residents are advised to book in the restaurant in advance.' Patrick, who had been trying to avoid disappointment all his life, cursed himself for not discovering this formula earlier."

The author has lots of fun with the characters coming together for a dinner and party at a country house. One character says: "I firmly believe that one should have the widest possible range of acquaintances, from monarchs right down to the humblest baronet in the land." The party's very special guest is Princess Margaret - and here St. Aubyn lets rip with a hilariously vicious portrait.

Patrick continues to be somewhat aloof and uninvolved with the social grouping around him but nonetheless feels ready to tell a friend about the abuse he suffered at the hands of his father. By the end of the book he is far from problem-free but seems ready to shake off his past and move into a positive future.

A funny, sad and humane book.
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Format: Paperback
Caroline Moore of the Sunday Telegraph notes the author's similes are "exhilarating in their accuracy", which is just as well as there is a profusion of them in the first 20 pages or so - "like a whirlwind of scrap paper left by the passage of a fast car" adorns the first paragraph, for example. My heart sank as I imagined I was about to be bludgeoned to death with these glib conceits in the manner of Graham Greene's rotten 'A Burnt-out Case'. Fortunately, however, they only hatch and take flight in the passages dealing with protagonist Patrick Melrose, where the style automatically becomes a lot more high falutin than the verbatim reportage of others' (they don't have enough depth to be called characters) mindless conversations, Princess Margaret the arch exponent of fatuous drivel here. When ESA drops the eloquent guff he becomes strangely and poetically powerful, as in the very last scene. "Patrick flicked his cigarette into the snow, and not quite knowing what had happened, headed back to his car with a strange feeling of elation." That "quite" is sadly symptomatic of Patrick's upper-class background but this conclusion is more affecting than the previous 209 pages put together and points to what might have been had Mr St Aubuyn realised that sometimes less is more.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book really is a tour de force - beautifully written.
But I am with Holden Caulfield: "What really knocks me out is a book that, when you're all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it. That doesn't happen much, though...You take that book Of Human Bondage, by Somerset Maugham... I read it last summer. It's a pretty good book and all, but I wouldn't want to call Somerset Maugham up. I don't know, he just isn't the kind of guy I'd want to call up, that's all."
And I feel the same about Edward St Aubyn.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have really enjoyed this series with an excellent set of characters hiding adware secret. Each books centre on a specific event in the main character's life but it is the entertaining set of characters which populate these events which makes the books so excellent and enjoyable. The dinner party with Princess Margaret is a joy.
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