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Fates and Furies Paperback – 7 Jul 2016
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"Enough betrayal, vengeance and sex to read like one of the Greek tragedies" (Observer)
"Rich, lyrical and rewarding." (Paula Hawkins, author of THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN Guardian (Books of the Year))
"A lyrical and, at times, astonishingly beautiful account of how little it is possible to know about those closest to us." (Financial Times)
"Addictive to read ... Groff has drawn a woman so complex it seems that with every chapter a new layer is revealed, each as deliciously intriguing as the next … The result is a compelling portrait of an unconventional marriage across two decades." (Stylist)
"[A] stunning achievement. The plotting is elegant, intricate and assured . . . it will give you much to savour." (Independent)
"Absorbing and beautifully written, this is a riveting study of love, power and creativity." (Sunday Express)
"A truly special novel ... if you haven't read her before, I'm delighted to take the credit for introducing you to one of your new favourite authors." (The Pool)
"A searing exploration of how far a person will go for love, loyalty and revenge." (Time)
"Rare and impressive… Groff has created a novel of extraordinary and genuine complexity…The word “ambitious” is often used as code for “overly ambitious”, a signal that an author’s execution has fallen short. No such hidden message here. Lauren Groff is a writer of rare gifts, and Fates and Furies is an unabashedly ambitious novel that delivers – with comedy, tragedy, well-deployed erudition and unmistakable glimmers of brilliance throughout." (New York Times)
"A book to submit to and be knocked out by." (Meg Wolitzer)
"A dazzling novel ... At once intimate and sweeping, this is the story of a marriage as parallel myths-- flaring with passion and betrayal, with redemption and retribution, with the sort of heart-breaking, head-slapping secrets that make you want to seek out someone else who's read it. Lauren Groff is a powerful and graceful writer, one of the best of her generation." (Jess Walter, author of Beautiful Ruins)
"Barack Obama’s favourite book of last year (and getting on for ours too), Fates and Furies is finally coming out in paperback. The tale of a marriage in parallel myths is a truly delicious story." (Observer Magazine – We Love…)
"[An] ingenious novel ... buttressed by real emotional power" (Mail on Sunday)
"Devastatingly good, with the most satisfying ending I've read in a long time. The writing is gorgeous, the plot twisting, and the characters are almost too real." (Sara Taylor, Guardian Books of the Year)
"A clear-the-ground triumph ... Groff captures the complicated ways love blesses, transforms and, yes, deceives us over many years…There’s a touch of F. Scott Fitzgerald in this glamorous story… Halfway through, Groff leverages her story in a remarkable and transformative way … A vertiginous ride that will shake your confidence in what you think you know about your spouse ― and yourself." (Washington Post)
On the surface, Mathilde is the perfect wife. But there are always two sides to every marriage. Read the New York Times bestseller taking the world by storm.See all Product description
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Top customer reviews
All made sense in the second half of the book, but I almost didn't get that far.
It was hard to warm to the characters, with the exception of Sallie.
I enjoyed the explorations of our different selves. How we present one version and hide another. Mathilde wasn't unique in this, but she was extreme.
I would recommend it though.
The book follows the marriage of Lotto and Mathilde – the two most repugnant, un-relatable and at times unrealistic characters I have read in a long time. The first half of the book concerns the story of Lotto, his childhood, perception of his wife and marriage then the second half is vice versa the story of Mathilde
This book was very difficult to review, but I’ll start with Lotto and Mathilde themselves…
Lotto (Lancelot) was said, repeatedly, to be charismatic, loved by all, having a light shine from him… but with no reason understandable as to why, why are people in love with this guy? He is described as only ever seeing the good in people and therefore making them feel great and they love him, but the proof of this was never shown at all, unless you call thinking you’d have sex with a girl because ‘despite all else’ she has nice forearms as only seeing the good then yeh… we see that he likes to sleep with everyone he meets…. Why is this love and awe inspiring? The end result of this was an extremely (IMO) unrealistic and un-relatable and most importantly DULL character that led to his half of the book being a monotonous sleep inducing bore.
The second half with Mathildes story was more interesting, I managed to get through it in a sitting, though I felt Mathilde was very shallowly written and she was just as repugnant as Lotto. There was a lot more story with Mathilde.. her character though as I said repugnant had a lot more of an interesting backstory, her half of the book in general had a story and even though I didn’t like her or her actions or the plot it was still interesting… or was it?... after reading Lotto’s half of the book I’m not sure if it was interesting or if his half was so dull it skewed my sense of reality. Despite reading this half quicker and being more engaged with the book I still often ended up wondering… what the point in this story??? What am I meant to learn?? Why has the author written this??
I would spend time here discussing some good characters…. This book unfortunately didn’t have any relatable or fun or likeable characters at all… that is judgey of me I know... but by the end of the book I really can’t say I’d want to spend any time with any of the characters - ever - some seemed like they might be okay , but they were dumped to the side as uninteresting by the author. Also I like to think I live a bit of an ‘artsy’ life.. Studied art, took drama, and generally have known a lot of artsy types… no suicides … yet in this book… suicides galore …Lottos half, it seemed a character would kill themselves every few chapters. At the end it really bothered me how shallow and pretentious the characters were. Often (well I think actually every time) it didn’t even add anything to the story.
The writing. Summed up. Long sentences, confusing simile’s and metaphors, hair cathedrals, looking like an over cooked cracker, quote on pretentious quote, factious line on factious line. The book contained long descriptions which lead nowhere, there were pages of Lottos play that seemed to have no bearing on the story… sometimes I felt like words were written for words sake.. I’m not poetic … (I assume the author was going for poetic) but I found it boring, confusing and more often than not I had the distinct feeling of just reading a series of words instead of an actually story. This is possibly due to a style and taste conflict I have with the author. Ultimately at the bottom line this was not my kind of story – at all- from the title I’d expected a Greek god fantasy story… I did not get anything near what I expected.
Finally the story …There wasn’t much of a story here, underneath it all the author had a few points she was obviously trying to drive home at certain times, but to me they ended up ringing false and the end of the book I felt was a bit of a U-turn and I ended up feeling a bit cheated and un-satisfied.
Lastly... my rating, firstly I rated this book 3 stars, on reflection this was predominantly because I was happy I finished it – that was an effort... its caused discussion and strong feeling without being completely shocking or disturbing. Even though the characters were horrible and the message (If any) was confusing, I still thought there were sweet scenes and it made me remember my partner and feel appreciation for him... But my partner also pointed out to me that I complained and hated this book so I’m sorry but it will have to be a 2 (1.5) star. I won’t recommend this.. But if someone else has I will be interested to hear their comments.