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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
43
3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 22 January 2013
Candia McWilliam has not learnt that economy of words can have greater impact than prolixity. The torrent of words in this book is undisciplined, self-indulgent, and terribly uninteresting. It's hard to be so critical, given that the central theme is her experience of blindness, but the writing has to be judged as writing, and in my view the writing is very poor. Not recommended.
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on 21 September 2011
This book was not for me. It is a collection of thoughts interspersed with memories of the author's past
It tends to dwell too much on name dropping, faintly remembered conversations of the past and insignificant events during the writing of the
book. If you prefer some structure to reading avoid this one
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VINE VOICEon 14 September 2010
I was lost in this book for several hours. The honesty is moving without being sentimental. Very real reflections on relationships. The best book I have read for a very long time.
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on 16 June 2016
An extraordinarily honest story of a life.
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on 22 April 2013
I think you need to relate to this author's attitude, which I don't. Hence problem no.1 Having trouble finishing it = problem no.2. Not a good sign. The person who recommended it absolutely loved it, so there you go...horses for courses, but I think she found points to identify with personally. I also found the writing style irritating; pointlessly convoluted sentences which were meant as a stream of consciousness.
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on 26 March 2012
I very much agree with Jane Napier's review of this book. Unlike her I did finish it by scanning the last 100 pages, just in case I would miss an important event or change. I was so relieved when I finally closed it. It was self-deprecating, self-pitying and at the same time superior. Of course I feel sorry that the author has this awful condition but reading this book was like spending too much time with someone I did not like. She comes over as being needy, dependent and masochistic (the latter she denies on p. 418). No inner resources, no real kindness, just words and famous names. A big, sad, blind cuckoo.
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on 7 March 2015
Great writer
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on 22 November 2015
Have not had
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on 17 December 2010
I bought this book because of the article in The Lady magazine about the author's distressing eye condition Blepharaspasm. I have an eye complaint and wondered if I had the same. I found the book very hard to follow and hardly anything about the eye condition. For instance, how it first started and how it affected the author before and after her operation. There were moments of interest but not many.
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on 16 November 2010
I utterly adored this book. It is too long and I kept having to look up words but, as soon as I'd finished it, I wanted to start over again. The writing is fresh, memorable and very, very beautiful. Perhaps it helps that the Edinburgh Ms McWilliam describes so perfectly was still much in evidence when I was growing up. Perhaps the brutal honesty shines in comparison to the usual self-congratulation of most autobiographies. And perhaps it's because I admire those whose ducks are swans. But, really, I just loved it.
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