The Gathering

The Gathering

by Anne Enright
2.6 82


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The Gathering by Anne Enright

Anne Enright is a dazzling writer of international stature and one of Ireland’s most singular voices. Now she delivers The Gathering, a moving, evocative portrait of a large Irish family and a shot of fresh blood into the Irish literary tradition, combining the lyricism of the old with the shock of the new. The nine surviving children of the Hegarty clan are gathering in Dublin for the wake of their wayward brother, Liam, drowned in the sea. His sister, Veronica, collects the body and keeps the dead man company, guarding the secret she shares with him—something that happened in their grandmother’s house in the winter of 1968. As Enright traces the line of betrayal and redemption through three generations her distinctive intelligence twists the world a fraction and gives it back to us in a new and unforgettable light. The Gathering is a daring, witty, and insightful family epic, clarified through Anne Enright’s unblinking eye. It is a novel about love and disappointment, about how memories warp and secrets fester, and how fate is written in the body, not in the stars.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780099501633
Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group
Publication date: 03/28/2008

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The Gathering 2.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 82 reviews.
MARYALICEMQ More than 1 year ago
just goes and goes and goes and it is PAINFUL, it has no redeeming value at all. So, it is good as an example of what you do not want to visit. I like a good story, and this would NOT BE IT.
faradise More than 1 year ago
I wish I had read the reviews before my book club picked this book. It is very disturbing, and not in a good way!!! There is so much description, it takes 5 pages to say someone may or may not have done something or nothing (confusing? just trying to give a bit of insight on what it is like to read this book). Perhaps for those who like very different writing, this would be a great find. I like to think I am pretty open about books and writing styles, but this leaves much to be desired. For the first time in my life, I dread my quiet reading time. I can't wait to be done so that I can start the books I have piled up while trying to get through this one. If it wasn't chosen by the club, I would probably have actually stopped reading this one...something I just don't do.
Capitalist More than 1 year ago
You would think that with eleven Irish brothers and sisters, the narrator would insert some lovely bits of humor to provide a touch of comic relief to this tale of a dysfunctional family, but the mood is unrelentingly morose (even Hamlet had the grave digger to make one laugh). After about fifty pages, as the narrator engages in endless self-pitying analysis, she ceases to be a sympathetic character and becomes quite tiresome. I miss the good old novels where characters reacted to difficulties with strength and selflessness rather than impotence and self-absorption.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I checked this out of our library because the jacket lured me into think I had found a treasure. I got so far as page 50 and could NOT see any plot nor any point. I had no idea what she was thinking other than some morbid conjecture, where I did not want to go. If you are looking for a great UK author try Lionel Shriver!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought the book based on what was written on the back cover and was very disappointed. It is rare that I do not finish a book that I purchase but could not get through it. The book seemed so dark and morbid. By the time I stopped reading it, I had my fill of hearing about all the people that had died, how Liam looked lying the mortuary on the table, selecting a coffin, etc., etc. I prefer something more uplifting.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought the book would be intriguing, and kept reading thinking there would be a climax. I was extremely disappointed, and wonder what I should have gotten out of the book. When I think of the books I will read in my life, I am sorry I wasted time on this one.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I will finish just about any book due to my curiosity regarding plot development. This book joins precious few that I've given up on. If there is a plot, it is so deeply hidden under all the anger and oddball character development that I missed it. The cover synopsis led me to expect more of a story, but what I found was a lot of introspection and reminiscing. Way too much navel-gazing for me.
skimmylatte More than 1 year ago
The first few pages seemed interesting and caught my attention, but then ... the author loses me, the writing style is sloppy and drunk-feeling, there seems to be too many characters with too many issues, the point-of-view is unjustified and I'm halfway through and still not sure why I'm supposed to care (or who I'm supposed to care about) and I don't know if I'll even finish the book so I can figure out the reason for the plot.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Worst book read in a long time. Struggled to finish it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Is sparrow ok.?
househuntermaggie More than 1 year ago
I kept waiting for this book to become something memorable. It moved so slowly and the characters were simply not ones I wanted to know more about. I finished it but what a struggle
lcr More than 1 year ago
Would not recommend
Guest More than 1 year ago
Talk about sexually repressed Irish Catholic! Who in their right mind wants to imagine their grandmother's sex life!? Writing was wordy and story line depressing and insane. This book makes one wonder about who decides book award winners. Will not waste time reading any other work by this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I wonder why this book got an award as the the plot went all over the place right from the beginning. If I had not read a review somewhere else I would have had no idea what this book was about Poor character development. The child abuse her dead brother suffered should have been revealed much earlier in the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Okay -- I finished it so that's something. I believe the author was trying for the technique of writing that Virginia Woolf perfected -- stream-of-conciousness; you feel like you're easedropping into someone's internal thoughts. It can be quite boring. Woolf's books can be that way, but Woolf was a much better writer than this woman. And guess what? Woolf killed herself by walking into a river with her pockets full of stones. I would not recommend this novel, but I give it at least 2 stars because I did finish it.
Read_A_Book More than 1 year ago
I read books really quickly, and usually average 1 per day. I started this book on October 20th. It's November 7th, and I'm still only at page 50. This book is soooooooooooooo boring that I haven't been able to finish it. I never do that! Eventually I will finish it, someday, and if there are any redeeming qualities, I'll come back here and let you know, but right now... ugh.
olivia7 More than 1 year ago
This book is pure genius for those that are confused or in a state of transition in their lives. I picked up this book expecting one perspective and was thrown a completely different one. Throughout the book, details are given in such a random and non-sensical fashion that towards the end, the reader realizes the sparcity of concrete facts is just what the author intended. I will admit that towards the middle the story doesn't seem to end, but when it does, the meaning is so profound you find yourself falling just like the narrator. I would not recommend this to any one faint of heart or looking for an easy read. Enright, however, has delivered a most complex yet satisfying glimpse into on the darkest episodes on one woman's life.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I tried 3 times to get into this book. The premise seemed interesting. very wordy and tedious.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read about one book per week (a train commuter...) and very rarely ever put a book down prior to finishing it. Well, I put this one down before reaching the halfway point. I could not connect with the characters, and overall it was depressing. It gave me no reason to continue reading. Don't waste your time!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was very disappointed. I kept reading thinking it would get better. I really must have missed the point of the book. would not recommend it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What a waste of time. The author tried way too hard to include any idea, description, quip or word trick all on the same page. She has no respect for the reader and I'm so sorry I continued reading it to the end, thinking, hoping, that surely it would get better, or at least more comprehensible. Read something, anything else.
Anonymous 9 months ago
Skystar won't be able to come to the gathering, our clan was attacked by dogs.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you are interested in this book, I would recommend listening to it on tape.  The narrator does a wonderful job and you can skip ahead when you absolutely lose interest in a section.