Passionate Man: A Novel

( 1 )

Overview

The Logans were an enchanting and admirable couple. Archie had snatched Liza from her own engagement party to someone else, wooed her, swept her off to his father in Scotland, and finally married her. Now bedded firmly into country life-three children, Archie the village doctor, Liza a teacher, everything comfortable, funny, affectionate,—they awaited the arrival of Archie's father, the brilliant Sir Andrew Logan, a widower for over thirty years.

When his city-clean Rover ...

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Overview

The Logans were an enchanting and admirable couple. Archie had snatched Liza from her own engagement party to someone else, wooed her, swept her off to his father in Scotland, and finally married her. Now bedded firmly into country life-three children, Archie the village doctor, Liza a teacher, everything comfortable, funny, affectionate,—they awaited the arrival of Archie's father, the brilliant Sir Andrew Logan, a widower for over thirty years.

When his city-clean Rover stopped in the drive, Sir Andrew was not alone. Beside him was a golden lady in caramel suede, a warm, witty, desirable widow whom everyone—except Archie—adored at once. Archie saw his father's mistress as the worm in the bud of his perfect life—a life that was to be wrenched apart before he and Liza could re-create their world.

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Editorial Reviews

Internet Book Watch
Dr. Archie Logan seems to have it all. He loves his wife Liza who he met at her engagement party. Fascinated by her from the start, Archie ran a ten-day campaign to win her love. Now they have several children and seem like the ideal poster couple and family. Perhaps the only slight problem between them is that Liza feels excluded from Archie's incredible relationship with his father Andrew, a widower even though her in-law has clearly adopted her as a daughter. However, Archie's perfect world shatters when Liza tells him that Andrew is bringing a woman, Marina de Breton, to their home after decades of parading no females around the family. Everyone else, including Archie's wife, children, and siblings find Marina charming. Archie acts jealous of the first intrusion into his relationship with his dad. However, Archie's behavior opens up the souls of everyone else, including his beloved Liza, that makes the middle aged country doctor reconsider his blindness towards the feelings of others. A Passionate Man is a thought provoking relationship drama that centers on a good person learning that complacency can lead to negative feelings towards him. Archie is a warm, caring person, but loses perspective. His father's new situation forces him to look inside his own essence and conscience. The support cast provides more than depth by allowing the audience an opportunity to understand the inner workings of interpersonal feelings. Any one desiring a well written, conscience-rendering novel that scrubs away the armor of a human being will fully relish Joanna Trollope's mindbending tale.
—Internet Book Watch
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780425176535
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 11/1/2000
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 1,480,479
  • Product dimensions: 5.27 (w) x 8.02 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Meet the Author

Joanna Trollope is a member of the same family as Anthony Trollope.

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Reading Group Guide

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:
  1. Archie and Andrew are exceptionally close for a father and son. Discuss those aspects of their relationship that seem healthy and those that do not. How much of the unhealthiness seems an understandable result of Archie's mother dying at an early age?

  2. We know that Archie sweeps Liza off her feet and out of an engagement to be married to someone else. How does the young Archie compare with the married country doctor he becomes? Do you think that the rituals of domesticity necessarily dilute passion?

  3. Discuss Archie's seemingly immature resentment of Marina's marriage to his father. How did you originally interpret his feelings? Did you think he truly saw Marina as the interloper, the one who would come between him and his father? Or do you think that, even then, there was a smidgen of Oedipal competitiveness?

  4. At first, Liza finds Archie and Andrew's closeness wonderful because they "both brooded over her with exciting possessiveness." However, she later grows to resent their "air of male self-sufficiency." Does this say as much about Liza's insecurities as it does about her husband and father-in-law's relationship?

  5. A central theme of this novel seems to be the dissipation of passion with the passage of time(as well as the revival of passion. Is this at the core of Archie's breakdown? And how does his father's sudden romance and unexpected death factor in to this?

  6. At times, passion and death can seem almost like opposite sides of the same coin. Discuss the complexities of Archie's affair with Marina(as it relates to his father's death, his own death, and death in general.

  7. Discuss the ways in which Liza's crisis is similar and dissimilar to Archie's. She seems to need to find personal power, as much as attention. How does Blaise factor into this? How does Marina contribute to her development?

  8. Marina is a major force in the novel. Yet, she means something different to everyone. Why do the children adore her? Why does Liza yearn to be like her? And what does she represent to Archie?

  9. Did you find Thomas's intuitiveness about the strained relations between his parents remarkable or typical? How does his absence at boarding school and his distress about his grandfather's death serve to heighten his awareness of trouble at home? And in what way does his return home signal an exorcism of Andrew's influence on Archie?

  10. What does this book say about starting over and renewing commitments? What do you think their choice to begin a new life in Scotland symbolizes? Did you believe that both Liza and Archie had grown enough to revive the passion in their own married life?
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2006

    Suprise, Surprise

    I purchased a stack of Joanna Trollope novels that included A Passionate Man, The Choir, and The Rector's Wife. Hands down, the last has been my favorite of the books. Regarding A Passionate Man, I have to say that the primary male character is interesting and rings very true to me until the surprise. From the moment of the surprise, I was no longer in the spell of the story. I was viewing everything through the surprise and for me, it doesn't generally ring as a truism.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    thought provoking relationship drama

    Dr. Archie Logan seems to have it all. He loves his wife Liza who he met at her engagement party. Fascinated by her from the start, Archie ran a ten-day campaign to win her love. Now they have several children and seem like the ideal poster couple and family. Perhaps the only slight problem between them is that Liza feels excluded from Archie¿s incredible relationship with his father Andrew, a widower even though her in-law has clearly adopted her as a daughter. <P> However, Archie¿s perfect world shatters when Liza tells him that Andrew is bringing a woman, Marina de Breton, to their home after decades of parading no females around the family. Everyone else, including Archie¿s wife, children, and siblings find Marina charming. Archie acts jealous of the first intrusion into his relationship with his dad. However, Archie¿s behavior opens up the souls of everyone else, including his beloved Liza, that makes the middle aged country doctor reconsider his blindness towards the feelings of others. <P> A PASSIONATE MAN is a thought provoking relationship drama that centers on a good person learning that complacency can lead to negative feelings towards him. Archie is a warm, caring person, but loses perspective. His father¿s new situation forces him to look inside his own essence and conscience. The support cast provides more than depth by allowing the audience an opportunity to understand the inner workings of interpersonal feelings. Any one desiring a well written, conscience-rendering novel that scrubs away the armor of a human being will fully relish Joanna Trollope¿s mindbending tale. <P>Harriet Klausner

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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