Where Three Roads Meet (Myths) Paperback – 5 Jun 2008
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'Ingenious...her vision of Hellenic Greece is earthy and alive.' -- Independent on Sunday
Simply and strongly done, laying bare many of our mortal anxieties -- The Times
The novel is a bright, hard, fine-cut gem -- The Sunday Times
This is a book to dwell on, to ponder, and delight in -- Scotsman
Vickers is comically irreverent about her own profession and deft at teasing out the slippery truths of Oedipus's tale. -- Observer
Vickers's retelling of Freud and Tiresias's exchanges is witty and revealing -- Sunday Times
Revisit a crime committed long ago which has disturbing reverberations for us all . . .See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Vickers takes the figure of Freud in his last years, when he is suffering from cancer, as one of the characters within this retelling. Freud is visited by a mysterious man who is blind and comes to him to recount a story about Oedipus. This mysterious visitor claims that he thinks Freud has missed something in his own Oedipus theory, and so he tells the story in order to help the famed psychoanalyst 'see' another point. For Vickers' retelling, the important point about the story is that Oedipus pushed and pushed for the knowledge that would be his downfall, despite being warned that there really are some things that should remain unsaid:
'"Events must be endured if they are to disclose their meaning."
"Or unfold untold meanings? And no one, even you, Doctor, has ever quite accounted for humankind's resistance to letting well alone."' (p173).
What makes this novel truely memorable is that Vickers plays around with language and words - as Freud and his visitor discuss the Oedipus story as well as Freud himself, they muse on the origins of words and how that may relate to the story they are discussing. This results in the book staying with you long after you have finished reading its lines. As any good psychoanalyst should, Vickers is able to make you stop and think and relfect on what has just been said, slowly showing you alternative perspectives or issues to consider.
This is a fantastic read - highly recommneded.
As with Vickers' previous novels, the story remains with you long after the last page has been read.
I had no real prior knowledge of Freud's life and so to discover that he had cancer of the mouth and the last years of his life with all the operations and horrendous pain (for it was the 1930's and medicine was not so advanced). Vickers uses this time when he was on a lot of morphine for a strange visitor to appear to him one day, almost frightening the life out of him, to tell him a tale of a place where three roads meet and a story Freud knows well but not from someone who might just have been there. With a novel like this you do need to be able to suspend your belief and go along with the tale but then if you are reading a myth in the first place that shouldn't be a problem.
What adds to the book is how the two narrators discuss the tale and all the questions it brings up of sexuality, the role of women and many of Freud's own ideas and theories. I found it all quite fascinating. I also like the way that the characters looked at words and how they originated in small asides during the tale. I enjoyed this book and I think if you are interested in the myths and love language then you will too.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting but overall it's not very engaging and too challenging for me. Maybe I'm missing something, but it didn't seem as deep as it appeared to be.Published 1 month ago by HairyBumMan
Excellent story, with the Oedipus myth and the last days of Freud cleverly woven together. Highly recommended.Published 2 months ago by John Peter Claver Toalster
Another very entertaining novel from this brilliant author. It is a retelling and brilliant deconstruction of the Oedipus myth both as an eternal human story and Freudian trope. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Carl
Sigmund Freud lies in hospital following an operation for cancer of the jaw and receives a mysterious visitor who begins to tell him a story, at once familiar yet different – the... Read morePublished 9 months ago by J.K. Currie
I enjoy all this author's books. It is well written, thought provoking and very entertaining.Published 10 months ago by Pamela Fellows
Disappointing. A nice retelling of the myth, but the Freud connection largely perfunctory.Published 18 months ago by J. Dean
All of Salley Vickers books are difficult to put down, and all are different. I wait avidly for a new one to come along and always enjoy her writing.Published 22 months ago by Joan Wilson