Customer Reviews for

The Diagnosis

Average Rating 3
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(4)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(2)

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 15 of 13 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2006

    DISAPPOINTING

    THE FIRST THIRD OF THE BOOK WAS CAPTIVATING. THE NEXT THIRD MADE ME SEARCH HARD FOR THE MEANING. THE LAST THIRD HELD ALL EXPECTATIONS FOR A PROFOUND ENDING THAT WAS NEVER THERE.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2006

    Worst book under Lightman's belt

    So much promise in my heart that this would amaze me like his two previous fictional novels. I read 'Diagnosis' to the end, and though I love the flashbacks to Socrates, I was immediately depressed when I was back in the world of a man with a self-inflicted illness that was obviously caused by the worn out 'people are not machines' theme. It never made real sense. It was as if Kafka came back from the dead but found himself composing a novel while mentally splintered. I am sure there was some deep connection here, but it missed me. I still can't figure out what Socrates had to do with this whiney business man whose wife is so bored with him she starts a computer affair to have some relief. Terrible in the talent Lightman usually shows. I will read his new novel to give him another chance.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2003

    Very entertaining

    This is a great book with a mix of contemporary issues and history. I liked its set up, detail, imagery and writing style. If you like to step back and observe the world, this is the book for you. Some things might seem cliche, but it's worth the read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2002

    A real disappointment

    'Einstein's Dreams' got me to read 'The Diagnosis.' 'The Diagnosis' will keep me from reading his next book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2001

    The Unexamined Life is Not Worth Living

    I received this book as a Christmas present and thoroughly enjoyed it. If you like Don DeLillo (White Noise), you¿ll love Lightman¿s new style. In contrast to the rarefied atmosphere of his highly successful Einstein¿s Dreams, Lightman¿s Diagnosis is pulsing with blood, sweat, tears and laughter. Long story short, this is a darkly humorous look at our modern predicament, a view that reminds us of the wisdom of that ancient philosopher, Socrates, who warned us that the unexamined life is hardly worth living. And so it is with the main character of the story, Bill Chalmers, whose desperate need for a proper diagnosis is thwarted by modern forces so common in our lives - office politics, urban inhumanity, suburban paranoia, and at every turn a technology that precludes with ubiquitous urgency any chance of our snatching a single moment for much needed contemplation. Overwhelmed by an environment of cell phones and the complex systems that make our modern lives possible, the main character temporarily loses his mind. By itself, the early scene of his going insane in the Boston subway is well worth the price of admission. His own failings resonate with the failings of the very institutions that are in place, theoretically, to save his sanity - his doctors, his therapist, even man¿s best friend, his family¿s pedigree dog, nothing seems to provide much help. Only his young son seems to be reaching out with any real line back to life. By reading to his (by now) crippled father some very dramatic scenes from the death of Socrates, the son provides the only clue to the source of his father¿s bizarre deterioration. Yet, despite his son¿s (unconscious?) efforts to impart some ancient wisdom, Bill Chalmers asymptotically approaches a platonic pinpoint in the backwater of his brain, a sense-less isolation, confinement to a bedroom bedazzled with strange artwork, shadowy images on the walls and floor. Can such a collapse lead to revelation, a look beyond the shadows of our modern cave? Can a paralysis of this sort lead to the self examination necessary for psychological salvation? Read Lightman¿s Diagnosis of our society and decide for yourself.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2001

    Barely scores two stars!

    This book is a rip-off. It seemed to me like the author read a newspaper story about someone losing their mind/memory in a subway and decided to write a rambling disconected comentary about our society, wrap in around the losing memory theme, oh yeah and throw in some greek history for good measure. I hated this book! It got me mad because he had a good story idea here and he went nowhere and left us hanging. Too bad too, he's a gifted writer.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2000

    The Diagnosis? Back to the Drawing Board...

    In this intelligently-written, dark and brooding novel, the author leaves the reader feeling unclear about his intentions or message. Cumbersome storylines do not wrap things up in a neat package. Thought-provoking, but rambling.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 5, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2008

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    Posted January 2, 2010

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    Posted January 23, 2010

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    Posted March 22, 2009

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    Posted June 2, 2011

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 15 of 13 Customer Reviews
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