Customer Reviews for

Blame

Average Rating 3.5
( 50 )
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5 Star

(12)

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(13)

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(6)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Quiet & fascinating novel

This book is not a murder mystery or fast-paced. It is the story of a woman who kills two Jehovah Witnesses because she is driving drunk. The book is about her life since that occurred and how she deals with guilt and the choices she makes. This is a totally character-d...
This book is not a murder mystery or fast-paced. It is the story of a woman who kills two Jehovah Witnesses because she is driving drunk. The book is about her life since that occurred and how she deals with guilt and the choices she makes. This is a totally character-driven story so if you don't like the characters, specifically Patsy, the main character, then you will not like the book or care about her choices. Critics keep mentioning the "twist" in the novel and they should stop because that pretty much gives it away. Plus, it's not all that dramatic. I suspected it almost from the beginning. The choices she made after the "twist" she may have made anyway. This is a very low-key novel, very well-written, interesting. The author made an unusual choice in not using quotation marks for dialogue. I often found that somewhat annoying and confusing because I wasn't sure if someone had said something aloud or if it was a mental comment. However, it did work with book to underscore its muted tone. Patsy is a woman who gave up some of her vivacity and personality when she gave up alcohol. Or is it because she is dealing with her guilt that she feels the need to be tamped down? Good discussion book.

posted by KrisPA on January 30, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

Disappointing and Predictable

What a boring snooze, after the first two parts. It was so predictable and all the characters were so one note. They are all beautiful and have endless supplies of money and privilege. Why couldn't Patsy have been relegated to a life of linoleum and public transportatio...
What a boring snooze, after the first two parts. It was so predictable and all the characters were so one note. They are all beautiful and have endless supplies of money and privilege. Why couldn't Patsy have been relegated to a life of linoleum and public transportation? Why didn't anything really happen? I'm supposed to feel bad for her because she resists an affair when she's married? And then we see that the man, her soulmate! has continued to carry a torch for her, after all these years. All the years she "suffered" with her older, wealthy (amazing good looking and virile) husband, expensive horses, organic garden and huge ranch dubbed the "Ponderosa". But inside she's felt blamed. Horrors! She was a drunk who thought she ran down and killed two people! She couldn't even remember! And aside from a few chapters about a short stint in prison (she gets blisters!), she suffers and struggles -- not at all. Upon her release there's a picturesque apartment, a colorful assortment of educated, wealthy friends, very cheap therapy and a seemingly well-paying job waiting for her. Oh, and I can't forget her thick, long, blonde hair which seems to stay with her even as she hits 50. She does lop it off in a soapy, sappy scene seemingly staged for a screenplay -- Charlize Theron maybe? I'm sure the hack job managed to look elegant, somehow. Couldn't she have any tribulations? A mole? A nasty prison scar? It's set in the 80s, so there are even the over-the-top gay characters, one of whom dies graciously of AIDS. I was stoked to read this book. It got so many good reviews. There were little bits that were brilliant, like a letter an old friend writes to Patsy when she's making her amends. These little sparks kept me going until the end, but it was really an intellectual's fairy tale. Ooh, look at the PhD with the DUI -- she didn't get to reproduce. Waaa, waaa. She'll have to settle for her land (enough to accommodate 2 horses and a barn) in Southern California and a successful career. The children were written by someone who does not have or know any. They were either amazingly wise and beautiful. (The clue is their "curls") or spoiled brats throwing tantrums that are indulged by the caricatured parents of today. This was trying to be Ian McEwan and falling way short. Read him instead. Atonement and On Chesil Beach are honestly touching and romantic and heartbreaking. Wow. I didn't realize how MUCH I didn't like this book until I decided to write this review.

posted by Corfiela on December 31, 2009

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