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Full of suspense, humor, and symbolism, this magnificently crafted and magical novel replays biblical and medieval themes in contemporary London. An attempt by the sharp, feral, and uncommonly intelligent Lucas Graffe to murder his sensual and charismatic half-brother Clement is interrupted by a stranger—whom Lucas strikes and leaves for dead. When the stranger mysteriously reappears, with specific demands for reparation, the Graffes’ circle of idiosyncratic family and friends is disrupted—for the demands are bizarre, intrusive, and ultimately fatal.
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||5.10(w) x 7.70(h) x 1.00(d)|
|Lexile:||980L (what's this?)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
Iris Murdoch (1919–1999) was born in Dublin and brought up in London. She studied philosophy at Cambridge and was a philosophy fellow at St. Anne's College for 20 years. She published her first novel in 1954 and was instantly recognized as a major talent. She went on to publish more than 26 novels, as well as works of philosophy, plays, and poetry.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This was not my favorite book, as I am not fond of books with magical realism. The characters' personalities, speech, and actions seemed unbelievable. The book had a feel of occurring in the past, but actually took place in modern times. However, that said, something kept me going to continue, and finish the book, and find out what happens to these characters.
A beautiful finish to this novel. It was spotty in parts, and I frequently wondered if early 90's British teens and early 20's talked and thought like that, but the finish was so well-rounded, so unexpected that I am left with a wonderful taste in my mouth. --------- The going is slow initially- I was reminded of D.H. Lawrence's 'Women in Love' because I just *didn't like those people*. I really didn't. I couldn't stand Joan, didn't like Bellamy, thought Harvey was vapid, and the Cliftonians unreal. I stuck around long enough to get to know them, and changed my attitude about some of them. I even became so involved that I was cheered by some of the mistakes being made right- especially when it came to the dog. I wanted to help correct things, and to influence people. ----------------------------- At times, I wondered who the novel was about. Was it Peter? Kind of- Peter transformed people, or so we assumed. (but did he?) Maybe it was the Cliftonians because they featured prominently? No, overall, events happened to them, but they didn't cause them. I thought for awhile that it was about Lucas, and in a way it was. Lucas was quite a force for 'the family', even though he was so rarely present. The novel even starts with his absence. But how could a novel be about an absent person? It doesn't matter though- it is about any of them and all of them. The marriages may have been a contrivance, but they were nice, some made sense, and others leave us with a lot to wonder about.------------------------------ Iris Murdoch is a wonderful writer, and weaves a beautiful web with unexpected moments. Even when I forget the action of a novel, I remember the feeling she left me with.