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Tales Of The City: Tales of the City 1 (Tales of the City Series) by [Maupin, Armistead]
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Tales Of The City: Tales of the City 1 (Tales of the City Series) Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 155 customer reviews

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Length: 419 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description

Review

"A consummate entertainer... It is Maupin's Dickensian gift to be able to render love convincingly" (Edmund White The Times Literary Supplement)

"Maupin is a richly gifted comic author" (Observer)

"San Francisco is fortunate in having a chronicler as witty and likeable as Armistead Maupin" (Independent)

"Like those of Dickens and Wilkie Collins, Armistead Maupin's novels have all appeared originally as serials... it is the strength of this approach, with its fantastic adventures and astonishingly contrived coincidences, that makes these novels charming and compelling" (Literary Review)

Book Description

The first volume in the widely acclaimed and much-loved series

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 797 KB
  • Print Length: 419 pages
  • Publisher: Transworld Digital; New Ed edition (13 Mar. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007533WD2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 155 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #7,572 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I've been meaning to read this ever since the Channel 4 adaptation in 1993, which starred Olympia Dukakis and Laura Linney.

The novel was first published in 1978 after being serialised in the San Francisco Chronicle. In it Armistead Maupin captures the spirit and atmosphere of a society with liberal attitudes to sex, sexuality and drugs. As such, the book does not seem as dated as it might have done.

The book follows the stories of around eight archetypal characters, from the naïve Mary Ann to the wise (but mysterious) Mrs Madrigal, the openly and flamboyantly gay (Michael) to the secretive and sinister (Norman). Centred on the lodgings run by Mrs Madrigal, and the "family" of residents, this is a book about friendship, relationships and the (often unexpected) connections between people.

While some of the references may be dated and specific to San Francisco, the book is a joy to read. The short chapters and easy-going style make it eminently readable.
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Format: Paperback
Found the first two on the shelves of the house in San Francisco where I was staying last week. Had just sprained ankle, so forced so sit in sun and read novels with foot on cushion all day (it was hell...) now home I hobbled to library and got out next two in series. What is it about some books - or perhaps some writers - that really makes you feel good? Can't say Maupin has actually cured the ankle, but the discovery of his books so late in my life (don't ask, honey) has certainly lifted my spirits. Another feel good book is "I Capture the Castle" by Dodie Smith (yes the 1001 dalmatians author) which came out in WW2 before you were born sweetie, but has the same way of treating adult subjects seriously and yet lightly and humourously. So glad I sprained my ankle. I think.
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Format: Paperback
My son has ADD and so has not been able to read a book all the way through since a teenager. I let him borrow this fantastic novel and he quite literally sat down and read it from cover to cover in a matter of hours. Not only is Tales of the City a witty, charming and altogether satisfying read but it has also kick-started my son's interest in books again. No one but Armistead Maupin can do this.
He weaves a quite delightful story, that is both touching and hilarious. The coincidences come thick and fast but never do you get a sense of them stretching credibility. He really makes you believe in the characters, you want to believe they exist and are not just fictional people. You want to find 28 Barbary Lane on a San Francisco road map and drop by for a cup of Ginseng Tea or perhaps hope to be invited to one of Mrs Madrigal's late night soirees.
Tales of the City is a modern masterpiece. It's magical, spellbinding and will take you on an adventure you will never forget. I can't rate it highly enough. Armistead, you are a genius!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A few months ago I put out a request for books set in San Francisco, and one book (or series of books) got mentioned over and over again. Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City had somehow passed me by - I'm really not sure how. But as soon as I started reading this first instalment, I knew I was going to be hooked.

The 'tales' belong to a wide and diverse cast. Mary Ann is new to San Francisco, moving into lodgings at 28 Barbary Lane. She's quiet and uncontroversial, very different to the other tennants living in the house. Mona seems unsure of what she wants from life and relies on sedatives to get through the day, Michael is gay, skint and looking for a good man (I loved him, especially in the scene with the jockey shorts in the bar), Brian sleeps with any woman he can find and landlady Anna Madrigal grows marijuana in the garden... plus there's an array of supporting characters each with their own secrets. Their lives are carefully and cleverly interwoven to create one world from what is essentially a series of short stories.

I liked how the scenes were snappy - most just a few pages long - and there was a lot of dialogue which added to the already fast pace. The dry humour and cutting remarks reminded me of a soap opera and have retained relevance 37 years after they were first written. Maupin lived in the San Francisco he was writing about and it shows, there's a realism in even the most outlandish of situations and that made me care about the characters and their plight.

This book is older than I am, and I imagine it was shocking when originally published (and probably still would be now to some readers!) Race, sexuality, drugs and infidelity are key to the plot and talked about openly, nothing is off limits.
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Format: Paperback
My eyes first crossed this book when I was 13 years old, I think I borrowed it from a library under the impression it was about something else. However, reading it again (at 18) has brought back all of the beautiful themes and excellent writing that made it a joy to read. The book is nothing short of amazing, with its intricate twists and plots. It is also an easy read and one that I would recommend to anyone above the age of 15, who loves reading about life. The emotion is there for all to feel and the bit that gets me is the Christmas Party at Barbary Lane, where Ms. Madrigal says that Edgar has already left. Beautiful!
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