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All He Ever Wanted: A Novel
     

All He Ever Wanted: A Novel

3.1 85
by Anita Shreve
 

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"A marriage is always two intersecting stories." This realization comes perhaps too late to the husband of Etna Bliss-a man whose obsession with his young wife begins at the moment of their first meeting, as he helps Etna and her companions escape from a fire in a hotel restaurant, and culminates in a marriage doomed by secrets and betrayal. Written with the

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All He Ever Wanted 3.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 86 reviews.
Sunshine86 More than 1 year ago
This book was a bit depressing because you could tell from the start how it was going to end and it moved pretty slowly. It was written well in that the author really got across how hopeful he was without it sounding to boring and brought about a bit of sympathy for him. I kept wondering why he kept hopes alive and was willing to take the scrapes she gave him.
LiveLoveAndRead More than 1 year ago
Slow, characters were a bore, and the babbling on about nothings really was quite irritating. I thought it would get better, but never did. Dissapointing!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Unlikeable and unsympathetic characters. Good portrayal of society at time of story, but story itself is rather boring. The author does have a lovely lyrical way of writing, with good descriptive phrases and lack of hackneyed word and expressions.
sandrabrazier More than 1 year ago
What, Exactly, Is He Willing to Do to Get What He Wants? This story opens with Nicholas Van Tassel surviving a restaurant fire. Once he exits the burning building and helps others to do the same, he sees Etna Bliss standing under the lamp light. He is instantly in love. Nicholas finally marries Etna and with full knowledge that she will never love him. She had told him. Nonetheless, he insists, believing he can make her love him. In addition, Etna, a woman before her time, hungers for independence. In the early 1900's, this is neither commonly accepted nor accommodated. Nicholas is definitely a man of his time, and does not feel Etna's independence is proper. Wishing to hold onto his wife and to acquire a position for which he longs at the college, Nicholas resorts to an outrageous act. This book is a reflection of Nicholas's life. Nicholas Van Tassel is actually riding in a train and writing this account of his life for his son. As he looks back on his life, the reader is given a one-sided account, his interpretation, of his career as a college professor and of his marriage to Etna Bliss. I grew to detest him, as the story proceeds. However, is he a product of his times? Or is he truly and evil man?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is truly boring...ugh. 
marybeth13 More than 1 year ago
I am listening to this book on tape and am completely emeshed in the story of Nicholas and Etna; I love the period piece portrayal. What a sad, sad story of "settling" for what one apparently cannot have. Nicholas and Etna, a doomed "love" that has no match! Cannot stop listening and waiting for the resolution of this marriage....
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Anne_Marie1899 More than 1 year ago
This was the first book I've read by Anita Shreve, I have to say I was disappointed.The book was very slow moving, and didn't really have much substance.I wouldn't recommend it.
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tchrreader More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was so so. I thought this book was slow to start and I kept waiting for something to happen. This is the story about Etna, she ends up being in a hotel fire. Her future husband falls in love with her the minute he sees her. She has a past that is a mystery and she doesn't love this man. It was a slow starting book that was hard to get into. Unbelievable things happened and it left a lot of unanswered questions. I didn't like being left hanging.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was a little hard to get into right away but once I did, I couldn't put it down.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Let me preface this by saying I AM a fan of Anita Shreve. Her book "Sea Glass" is one of my favorite reads. Because of her previous books, I was very excited to pick up "All He Ever Wanted". I hated every second of it. At first I was confused by the style; I did not know it was a "period piece". Although consistent in her writing for the era, the book was boring and found the characters were shallow, selfish, and miserable. There was not one character in the book that had any endearing or redeeming qualities. I never do this but I stopped at the last chapter, didn't even finish it and literally threw it away. With all that said, I am still a fan of Anita Shreve and will read her in the future but with so many books to read I would suggest not wasting precious reading time on this dud.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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