Eden Close

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Overview

A ?measured and haunting? modern gothic tale (New York Times Book Review) from the author of The Pilot?s Wife and The Weight of Water-the story of one man?s attempt to uncover the obsessions that killed a neighbor and blinded a beautiful girl seventeen years earlier.

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1998 Trade paperback New. No dust jacket as issued. Trade paperback (US). Glued binding. 276 p. Audience: General/trade.

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New Ships From Canada. New. No dust jacket as issued. Trade paperback (US). Glued binding. 276 p. Audience: General/trade. From Publishers Weekly In her notable fiction debut ... (her most recent nonfiction book is Women Together, Women Alone ) Shreve sensitively explores the coming-of-age and later redemption of her hero, events separated by nearly 20 years. A recently divorced New York advertising executive in his mid-30s, Andrew returns to the home of his youth in upstate New York to bury his widowed mother. In the dilapidated house next door live Eden Close and her mother Edith. The novel opens with Andrew dreaming of the night he was awakened by screams from the Closes' house, an incident well remembered: "'"The man next door was murdered when I was seventeen. His daughter was raped. "'" Blinded by the same gun that killed her father, Eden endures an hermetic existence, zealously guarded by her mother. She and Andrew had been best friends before puberty complicated their relationship, and. Read more Show Less

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Condition: New
1998 Trade paperback New. No dust jacket as issued. Trade paperback (US). Glued binding. 276 p. Audience: General/trade. From Publishers Weekly In her notable fiction debut (her ... most recent nonfiction book is Women Together, Women Alone ) Shreve sensitively explores the coming-of-age and later redemption of her hero, events separated by nearly 20 years. A recently divorced New York advertising executive in his mid-30s, Andrew returns to the home of his youth in upstate New York to bury his widowed mother. In the dilapidated house next door live Eden Close and her mother Edith. The novel opens with Andrew dreaming of the night he was awakened by screams from the Closes' house, an incident well remembered: "The man next door was murdered when I was seventeen. His daughter was raped. " Blinded by the same gun that killed her father, Eden endures an hermetic existence, zealously guarded by her mother. She and Andrew had been best friends before puberty complicated their relationship, and now Andrew, looking t Read more Show Less

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Eden Close

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Overview

A “measured and haunting” modern gothic tale (New York Times Book Review) from the author of The Pilot’s Wife and The Weight of Water-the story of one man’s attempt to uncover the obsessions that killed a neighbor and blinded a beautiful girl seventeen years earlier.

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Editorial Reviews

NY Times Book Review
Eden Close is...a novel of sensibility. Its insights are keen, its language measured and haunting.
New York Times Book Review
Shreve demonstrates her ability to create highly vivid, sympathetic people, and to delineate their shifting relationship over time....She has made the form of the modern gothic novel yield dome fine literary rewards.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780156005890
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 4/1/1998
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 276
  • Product dimensions: 5.28 (w) x 7.98 (h) x 0.73 (d)

Meet the Author

Anita Shreve

Anita Shreve is the critically acclaimed, award-winning author of Fortune's Rocks, The Pilot's Wife, The Weight of Water, Resistance, Eden Close, and Where or When. She teaches at Amherst College and lives in Longmeadow, Massachusetts.

Biography

For many readers, the appeal of Anita Shreve’s novels is their ability to combine all of the escapist elements of a good beach read with the kind of thoughtful complexity not generally associated with romantic fiction. Shreve’s books are loaded with enough adultery, eroticism, and passion to make anyone keep flipping the pages, but the writer whom People magazine once dubbed a “master storyteller” is also concerned with the complexities of her characters’ motivations, relationships, and lives.

Shreve’s novels draw on her diverse experiences as a teacher and journalist: she began writing fiction while teaching high school, and was awarded an O. Henry Prize in 1975 for her story, “Past the Island, Drifting.” She then spent several years working as a journalist in Africa, and later returned to the States to raise her children. In the 1980s, she wrote about women’s issues, which resulted in two nonfiction books -- Remaking Motherhood and Women Together, Women Alone -- before breaking into mainstream fiction with Eden Close in 1989.

This interest in women’s lives -- their struggles and success, families and friendships -- informs all of Shreve’s fiction. The combination of her journalist’s eye for detail and her literary ear for the telling turn of phrase mean that Shreve can spin a story that is dense, atmospheric, and believable. Shreve incorporates the pull of the sea -- the inexorable tides, the unpredictable surf -- into her characters’ lives the way Willa Cather worked the beauty and wildness of the Midwestern plains into her fiction. In Fortune’s Rocks and The Weight of Water, the sea becomes a character itself, evocative and ultimately consuming. In Sea Glass, Shreve takes the metaphor as far as she can, where characters are tested again and again, only to emerge stronger by surviving the ravages of life.

A domestic sensualist, Shreve makes use of the emblems of household life to a high degree, letting a home tell its stories just as much as its inhabitants do, and even recycling the same house through different books and periods of time, giving it a sort of palimpsest effect, in which old stories burn through the newer ones, creating a historical montage. "A house with any kind of age will have dozens of stories to tell," she says. "I suppose if a novelist could live long enough, one could base an entire oeuvre on the lives that weave in and out of an antique house."

Shreve’s work is sometimes categorized as “women’s fiction,” because of her focus on women’s sensibilties and plights. But her evocative and precise language and imagery take her beyond category fiction, and moderate the vein of sentimentality which threads through her books. Moreover, her kaleidoscopic view of history, her iron grip on the details and detritus of 19th-century life (which she sometimes intersperses with a 20th-century story), and her uncanny ability to replicate 19th-century dialogue without sounding fusty or fussy, make for novels that that are always absorbing and often riveting. If she has a flaw, it is that her imagery is sometimes too cinematic, but one can hardly fault her for that: after all, the call of Hollywood is surely as strong as the call of the sea for a writer as talented as Shreve.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 55 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(25)

4 Star

(14)

3 Star

(11)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 55 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2001

    What a Wonderful Find

    After reading The Pilot's Wife, Where or When, and Strange Fits of Passion, all by Anita Shreve, I bought the rest of her books and started flying through them. This one in particular is a gem, with romance, murder, and a mystery that keeps you guessing and pondering until the very end.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 29, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    A lovely story!

    Two childhood friends, on the brink of romance, find themselves there again nearly twenty years later. The undercurrents that run throughout the book add intrigue. Eden is blind a result of a tragic shooting in her teens and together they must reveal what has been hiding in the darkness all these years. While the circumstances surrounding Eden's blindness were tragic, to see one character struggle to care for another out of pure love was a pleasure and heartfelt. A lovely story!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 12, 2008

    Captivating!

    Great story, a page-turner, a few surprises. I think this would make an excellent movie!!

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted June 16, 2006

    A Must Read for any Anita Shreve Fan

    Loved it, Loved it, Loved it! I could not put this one down! It was a page turner from beginning to end. I highly recommend it for any Anita Shreve fan. The climax of the story was not what I thought it would be at first but made absolute sense. A story within a story, splendid.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted June 1, 2006

    Exceptional atmosphere.

    This is an exceptional novel, particularly conveying the atmosphere of small town upstate New York over a young man's lifetime, as he reminiscences and acts in the present. The characters were very interesting, and well drawn. This is the best American novel I have read since Peter Straub's ''Ghost Story'', although different in genre, also set in upstate New York.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted April 9, 2003

    Full of great imagery and intrigue!

    I could not put the book down. In all honesty, the reason I bought it was because I had to read an outside novel for my EN 448 class and picked the book up because 'A Novel' is written on the front. Its the first book I have read all the way through without having to get an online summary. The imagery made me feel right in the story and the suspense was riveting.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 26, 2003

    Wonderful

    The first book I read by Anita Shreve was 'The Last Time They Met' and I found it so intriguing that I had to read her other books. 'Eden Close' is a book that really stood out among the ones that I have read. I just found that the story encompasses so many things I had been looking for in other fiction that I have read. I look forward to other works.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2012

    Eden close

    Great

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2012

    Rebecca

    I need a check-up. Im having a baby shortly, and i need to know if it is a girl or a boy for the baby shower. Please help.

    1 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2012

    Anonymous

    As I read through this book, I felt an emptyness, the author's style of writing was void of any real emotion on the part of the characters. They were like robots. They all seemed to have a sadness about them. I did like the plot and story line, but I think the author could have given this story a litle more suspense and given the events a lot more drama. The events just seemed to be too matter of factly. The story did have a good ending. I recommend this book. This is my first book by this author, maybe I just have to get used to her style of writing.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 20, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Good

    Good book but not as good as most by Shreve; more forgettable.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 12, 2013

    This is the first Anita Shreve book that I've read and I have to

    This is the first Anita Shreve book that I've read and I have to say that I loved it! I had read a few other reviews about the book before I read it and they were pretty mixed, so I didn't know what to expect. However, I already had a copy of the book, so I figured I would give it a try rather than just let it sit on my shelves unread. I was very pleasantly surprised! I love Anita Shreve's writing style in this book, and I'm its just as good in all her others! This was such a compelling story. Something about it just made me keep wanting to read more; I could never put it down! I loved the two main characters, Andrew and Eden; they were so easy to relate with and understand. I was rooting for their relationship the entire time! 

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

    Posted July 26, 2012

    A dog

    A dog comes in wearing jeans and a shirt. "Yo coltej dawg i need chec up!"

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2012

    Dr.robert

    Ok you can go

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 10, 2012

    this was a great book that i happened to pick up at a used book

    this was a great book that i happened to pick up at a used book shop. anita shreve's writing will captivate you into the complex plot that is completely unpredictable. believe me, you will not be able to put this book down!! and also, considering how interesting and the fact that anita used 3rd person and bits of 1st person for Eden's voice, it would make a very good movie!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 29, 2011

    Great read, but...

    "Lend me" has terrible quality w/ spelling errors. Lovely, haunting book, but the experience dimmed with the vast number if mistakes.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2010

    Another Anita Shreve winner

    This is a good book to curl up with on a rainy or snowy day. The characters are vivid and interesting, with a good ending.

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  • Posted February 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    good plot, too drawn out

    i read 'testimony' by anita shreve and fell in love with her writing. i then began looking into her other books and found this one.<BR/><BR/>it started out good, but slow. then it got interesting and i couldn't put it down. then it started lagging again. once it got to the very end it proved to me that the plot, the overall story, is a wonderful idea. very original and something i've never read before. <BR/><BR/>the problem i had with the book was that it was too long to tell the story. there were so many slow parts of the book that made me wonder, how is this going to get any better? it was hard for me to finish reading it because it wasn't a book that i found i couldn't put down.<BR/><BR/>overall, i wouldn't really recommend this anita shreve book unless you are looking to read for an entire rainy day and finish it then. i still plan to read more from anita shreve though!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2005

    BEST BOOK

    This book was fantastic, and it was impossible to put down. I believe it is one of her best books

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2004

    Worthy My Time - Again!

    I admit, I love Anita Shreve books. I really enjoyed Eden Close. Even the title -- I thought Eden (as in Garden of) and Close (as in near, or proximity). Even her choice of names is clever, and once you read the book you can really mentally play with the meaning of the title. The book is gripping, from beginning to end. I blew an entire afternoon just completely wrapped up in the book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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