Customer Reviews for

Partisan's Daughter

Average Rating 3.5
( 9 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2012

    Different style...

    This is not Louis de Bernieres' regular style, however I enjoyed it a lot.

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  • Posted November 28, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Psychological Mystery

    Chris is like millions of middle-aged men. Stuck in a loveless marriage, he is frustrated at the thought that this might be all there is to his life. One night, while on the way home, he sees a streetwalker and impulsively, stops and tries to hire her. He is instantly filled with regret when the woman is insulted that he thought she was a prostitute. She then tells him that he can take her home to make up for it, and he does. As she leaves his car, she tells him that he seems a nice man and that he should come by sometime for coffee. Then she off-handedly mentions, "When I was bad girl I never took less than five hundred. I don't do cheap."

    Thus starts the relationship between Chris and Roza. Roza is a young Yugoslavian woman who is in England illegally. Chris does stop by her apartment and she becomes a modern-day Scheherazade, full of exotic stories that have made up her life. Each story reveals more and more of her character and needs. Chris is entranced, both by Roza personally and by the stories she tells. He is shown a side of life he'd never seen as he realizes that while he wants more adventure in his life, he is actually unlikely to pursue it if it means leaving his comfortable, boring life. "I wouldn't want to be a partisan unless I got weekends off and missions were optional."

    Roza's stories revolve around men in her life, starting with her father. He fought for various factions in Yugoslavia as a partisan, and lived his life afterwards extolling the strength and honor of men like him who were willing to sacrifice everything for the land and lives they loved. Then there is her first love, met when she attended college. After that, she met a man who brought her to England and she lived with him for a while, then slowly drifted away when she got bored. She drifted into hostess work. Roza is fatalistic about her life, and is quick to say she has disappointed the idea of being a partisan's daughter.

    Louis De Bernieres has created two characters that the reader quickly learns to care about. The slow emergence of Roza's history and of Chris' reaction to its revelations creates a tension that leaves the reader anxious and intrigued. The reader wants to read more of the emerging relationship between these two people who are so diametrically opposed in outlook and life experiences. This book is recommended for readers of current fiction, and is one that will remain in the reader's mind for quite a while after it is completed.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 14, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    A strong effort

    Chris is like millions of middle-aged men. Stuck in a loveless marriage, he is frustrated at the thought that this might be all there is to his life. One night, while on the way home, he sees a streetwalker and impulsively, stops and tries to hire her. He is instantly filled with regret when the woman is insulted that he thought she was a prostitute. She then tells him that he can take her home to make up for it, and he does. As she leaves his car, she tells him that he seems a nice man and that he should come by sometime for coffee. Then she off-handedly mentions, "When I was bad girl I never took less than five hundred. I don't do cheap."

    Thus starts the relationship between Chris and Roza. Roza is a young Yugoslavian woman who is in England illegally. Chris does stop by her apartment and she becomes a modern-day Scheherazade, full of exotic stories that have made up her life. Each story reveals more and more of her character and needs. Chris is entranced, both by Roza personally and by the stories she tells. He is shown a side of life he'd never seen as he realizes that while he wants more adventure in his life, he is actually unlikely to pursue it if it means leaving his comfortable, boring life. "I wouldn't want to be a partisan unless I got weekends off and missions were optional."

    Roza's stories revolve around men in her life, starting with her father. He fought for various factions in Yugoslavia as a partisan, and lived his life afterwards extolling the strength and honor of men like him who were willing to sacrifice everything for the land and lives they loved. Then there is her first love, met when she attended college. After that, she met a man who brought her to England and she lived with him for a while, then slowly drifted away when she got bored. She drifted into hostess work. Roza is fatalistic about her life, and is quick to say she has disappointed the idea of being a partisan's daughter.

    Louis De Bernieres has created two characters that the reader quickly learns to care about. The slow emergence of Roza's history and of Chris' reaction to its revelations creates a tension that leaves the reader anxious and intrigued. The reader wants to read more of the emerging relationship between these two people who are so diametrically opposed in outlook and life experiences. This book is recommended for readers of current fiction, and is one that will remain in the reader's mind for quite a while after it is completed.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 7, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The Princess on the Bungheap

    To be honest, I didn't really enjoy this book and was glad to put it down and move on to the next adventure. The books is mainly about the life that Roza has lead and I found her to be a less than likable character.

    Full Review; http://bookywooks.blogspot.com/2009/12/princess-on-bungheap.html

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 25, 2008

    This is an extremely complex relationship drama

    In the late 1970s in wintry London, fortyish salesman Chris detests his life he loathes his job and hates his marriage though widower status gives him some hope to get past the despair of being with the ¿Great White Loaf¿ late wife. Discontented with his lot he keeps asking himself is that all there is?--------- When he spots Yugoslavian expatriate Roza walking, he assumes she is a hooker. He bungles his efforts to hire her services. She corrects his misconception and they begin to talk. He drives her home and she invites him in her flat for coffee. A friendship forms that he believes is the underpinning of a romance and she assumes is platonic. She explains she came from her homeland seeking a break but so far has found only hardship that has her considering a return to her homeland where her father is a die hard Tito backer.------------ This is an extremely complex relationship drama. The dark gloominess of both protagonists makes this a difficult novel to read as the focus is actually on opportunity costs, especially those not chosen. Roza is the more interesting star as her tale is sensationally erotic over the top and at times ugly, but also feels hyperbolic symbolizing the plight of minorities everywhere (especially Iron Curtain Europe during the Brezhnev Era). Chris is the more realistic characterization of the western middle aged normal who wonders why life is depressing so finds excitement in his companion¿s tales. Not for everyone, as at times overly dramatic and extremely reflective including the action scenes, A PARTISAN¿S DAUGHTER is a deep look at the late 1970s.--------- Harriet Klausner

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2008

    A Partisan's Daughter

    In One Thousand And One Nights, Scheherazade was the wise queen who told stories to her king to keep from being executed. In de Bernieres' latest work, it is the titular Roza who spins tales to make sense of her own life as she goes from growing up in Yugoslavia to working as a hostess in a pussycat costume to being mistaken y Chris for a prostitute on the streets of 1970s London. Chris is no king but a middle-aged, unhappily married man in the winter of his discontent. He is enraptured both by the stories and the teller and, as time passes, a genuine affection grows between the two. The novel alternates between the points of view of Roza and Chris, though you never quite feel that you get a good grip on either of them. This is partly deliberate as there are hints peppered throughout that Roza is an unreliable narrator who is embellishing her tales in order to shock Chris and keep him hooked. What happens though when the stories run out? Scheherazade wins over the king and keeps her life, but there is no happy ending in sight for Roza. Chris has a conveniently timed meltdown and, even more annoyingly, Roza's voice is unceremoniously silenced. One is left with an ending that feels rushed and forced. Fans of Captain Corellu's Mandolin, de Berniere's deeply humane and funny novel about love in the time of war, would do well to approach this one with caution.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 30, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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