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Waterland Tekijä: Graham Swift
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Waterland (alkuperäinen julkaisuvuosi 1983; vuoden 2019 painos)

Tekijä: Graham Swift (Tekijä)

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
2,398436,259 (3.95)192
Set in the bleak Fen Country of East Anglia, and spanning some 240 years in the lives of its haunted narrator and his ancestors, Waterland is a book that takes in eels and incest, ale-making and madness, the heartless sweep of history and a family romance as tormented as any in Greek tragedy. " Waterland, like the Hardy novels, carries with all else a profound knowledge of a people, a place, and their interweaving.... Swift tells his tale with wonderful contemporary verve and verbal felicity.... A fine and original work." --"Los Angeles Times"… (lisätietoja)
Jäsen:mattico
Teoksen nimi:Waterland
Kirjailijat:Graham Swift (Tekijä)
Info:Scribner UK (2019), 512 pages
Kokoelmat:Oma kirjasto
Arvio (tähdet):
Avainsanoja:-

Teostiedot

Veden maa (tekijä: Graham Swift) (1983)

  1. 10
    Isä muuttaa yläkertaan (tekijä: Gerbrand Bakker) (chrisharpe)
  2. 10
    Eels: An Exploration, from New Zealand to the Sargasso, of the World's Most Mysterious Fish (tekijä: James Prosek) (ehines)
    ehines: A character in Waterland is fixated by eels: their elusive nature, myths surrounding them, and how the riddle of their origin was finally solved. Waterland is mentioned in the Introduction as one of the inspirations for Prosek's book.
  3. 00
    Ulverton (tekijä: Adam Thorpe) (chrisharpe)
  4. 00
    Life: An Exploded Diagram (tekijä: Mal Peet) (tim_halpin)
    tim_halpin: Similar obsession with the connection between History (with a capital H) and ordinary people's lives. Same historical scope. Also, coincidentally, both set in the East of England.
  5. 00
    The Sweet Shop Owner (tekijä: Graham Swift) (KayCliff)
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» Katso myös 192 mainintaa

englanti (36)  hollanti (3)  espanja (2)  Kaikki kielet (41)
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 41) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
I first read this novel shortly after the paperback edition was released, almost forty years ago. It had been included in the previous year’s Booker Prize shortlist, and most of the reviews had been appropriately enthusiastic. I had just started in my first proper job, and was revelling in the awareness that, after years of student penury, I could now occasionally take a chance on buying a book on a whim, rather than having to weigh up every purchase against the risk of Micawberesque misery.

And what a book! In just over three hundred pages, Graham Swift offers the reader a history of East Anglia, including insights into political strife, land reclamation, flood management, the finer points of brewing, the beguiling mysteries of the eel, the culmination of the Cold War in the early 1980s, a love story, a murder, and a cautionary tale about incest, all wrapped up in a fascinating exegesis of the nature of history itself.

Tom Crick is, for the moment, Head of History at a large comprehensive school in London, beset with domestic challenges and facing strenuous effort by his headteacher to close his department. His Sixth Form lessons have, however, bucked the trend in which disaffected pupils move away from the humanities. His lessons are swell, because word has spread among the pupils of a new approach to teaching in which Crick’s lessons are suffused with vivid recollections from his own childhood. Crick’s pupils are dejected, convinced that the world is on the brink of a final nuclear war. Forty years earlier, Crick had been growing up in Norfolk during the Second World War, where his father was a lock-keeper responsible for vital flood management in that low lying land, contending with rationing and watching regular bombing missions taking off from the air force bases spread all around the county.

Swift takes his readers through numerous flashbacks, showing how Crick’s family had come to live by the river, and painting the history of the region. The flat landscape, and numerous waterways of the region play a key part in setting the atmosphere of the story. Swift’s prose is as clear as the water in Crick’s father’s lock, and his mastery of the multiple strands of the story is immense. He merges folklore with history, and manage the cast of characters deftly.

I can’t remember which book actually won the Booker Prize when this was a challenger – it must have been jolly good to have beaten this. ( )
  Eyejaybee | Jan 30, 2024 |
Las clases del profesor de historia Tom Crick, cuya esposa acaba de raptar a un niño son muy particulares: nada de fechas, batallas o héroes, apenas el pasado del maestro y la vieja lucha de su familia contra los pantanosos Fens ingleses. A pesar de las directrices de la escuela, Crick elige contar su vida antes que dictar el tradicionalmente amable programa de la materia. Con la misma tenaz paciencia que sus antepasados utilizaron para derrotar la obstinación acuática de los movedizos Fens, el curioso docente se irá rodeando de sus más íntimos fantasmas, inseguridades, miedos y dudas. ¿Sirve para algo la Historia? ¿Por qué motivo una mujer cambia el amor de su marido por la devoción a Dios? ¿En qué momento todo empieza a ir mal?
  Natt90 | Mar 8, 2023 |
El país del agua ha sido unánimemente reconocida como una de las mejores novelas de la literatura británica de las últimas décadas. Las clases del profesor de historia Tom Crick cuya esposa acaba de raptar a un niño son muy particulares: nada de fechas, batallas o héroes, apenas el pasado del maestro y la vieja lucha de su familia contra los pantanosos Fens ingleses. A pesar de las intimidatorias amenazas del más que ortodoxo director de la escuela, un confundido pero perseverante Crick elige contar su vida antes que dictar el tradicionalmente amable programa de la materia. Así, mientras cuestiona la necesidad de investigar la memoria, el cadáver de un adolescente aparece flotando detrás de las esclusas de los recuerdos, un estudiante se manifiesta harto de tanto desvarío pedagógico y, con la misma tenaz paciencia que sus antepasados utilizaron para derrotar la obstinación acuática de los movedizos Fens, el curioso docente se irá rodeando de sus más íntimos fantasmas, inseguridades, miedos y dudas. ¿Sirve para algo la Historia? ¿Por qué motivo una mujer cambia el amor de su marido por la devoción a Dios? ¿En qué momento todo empieza a ir mal? Las respuestas, quimeras que pretenderán vengar la secreta impunidad del presente, se le aparecerán embarradas, sugestivas y distantes; todavía en el frío paisaje de su infancia como pistas abandonadas que esperan el regreso del culpable al lugar del crimen.

El país del agua, ganadora de los Premios Guardian y Royal Society of Literature, es una conmovedora y brillantísima reflexión sobre las ambigüedades del conocimiento, las imposibilidades del amor, y las idas y venidas del Tiempo. En una geografía melancólica en donde las estrellas son bendiciones divinas que un día decidieron dejar de caer, los cuentos de familia se suceden con extraordinario encanto, apasionada crueldad y refinada belleza.

«Una ruda saga familiar, un relato detectivesco y una reflexión filosófica sobre la naturaleza y los usos de la Historia»

(The New York Times).

«El país del agua es, al mismo tiempo, una historia de Inglaterra, un documento sobre los Fens y una autobiografía de ficción. La rareza y los extraños efectos de "el paisaje que más se acerca a la Nada" son magníficos. El país del agua es a los Fens lo que Moby Dick a la caza de ballenas ... Esta es una bella, seria e inteligente novela, admirablemente ambiciosa y original»

(Hermione Lee, The Observer).

«Las más memorables novelas de los últimos diez años son Los hijos de la medianoche, El nombre de la rosa, La vida instrucciones de uso y El país del agua»

(D. J. Taylor, British fiction in the 1980s).
  ferperezm | Feb 27, 2023 |
Liked the beautiful, wryly funny writing. I’d never heard of the author before but I read a good short story of his in the New Yorker last month so I looked him up. Guess he’s a big deal (and I’m not in the loop). I thought the ending was a bit abrupt maybe? Great thoughts about the importance and unreliability of “family history” - reminded me of Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively in that sense.
( )
  steve02476 | Jan 3, 2023 |
Robert Webb, I will never forgive you for recommending this novel! I watched Between the Covers, the BBC book club with Sara Cox, to pick up some TBR tips from celebrities and Robert Webb's favourite book - "I gave it to my last two girlfriends – including my wife – and David Mitchell, and they all liked it" (ha!) - was definitely a fail.

Combining two of my most hated literary devices - smug male narrators and thinly veiled themes overloading the story - this somnambulant disaster was only good at sending me straight to sleep after ploughing through more than a paragraph. In the spirit of Stoner, pompous history teacher Tom Crick is being forced to 'retire' after his wife steals a baby and gets put away. He spends his final term holding his class hostage with a convoluted and tedious history of his life, interspersed with random lectures on the Norfolk fens, rivers, eels and even phlegm at one point (like a very British Les Mis!)

When he was a young boy, living with his widowed lockkeeper father and slow older brother (charmingly termed a 'potato head'), one of Tom's schoolfriends drowned in the river, and we poor readers spend the whole book waiting for the obvious to be confirmed - everything is always a woman's fault! Freddie Parr was pushed into the river as a (mistaken) rival for a young girl's affection. Why did older Tom's wife - the same girl at the centre of the childhood drama - steal a baby? Childhood trauma robbed her of the chance of becoming a mother, of course!

Added to the Wikipedia articles and drawn-out memoirs of a failed Dead Poets Society wannabe, we also get ridiculous melodrama in the form of local history. Two families, the Cricks and the Atkinsons, represent the past and the future of the fens, the one respecting the river and the other damming the water up and building sluice gates and locks in the spirit of Victorian progress. The Atkinsons, however, are gothic nightmares, complete with zombie wives and literal inbreeding - so of course the two families join together and the result is the narrator and his brother.

All of this water-centric madness could have been acceptable - even entertaining, like Michael McDowell's Blackwater saga - but for the writing:

And thus the history teacher—though his relation with his young charges echoes first the paternal, then the grand-paternal, though he sees in their faces (but does not admit it) less and less the image of the future, more and more that of something he is trying to retrieve, something he has lost—could always say (he acquires a penchant for paradox) that he looked back in order to look forward.

Pages and pages of pontificating drivel, punctuated with annoying half sentences - 'If she had ...', 'But then ...' No wonder I kept falling asleep! I hated Tom, adult and child/preteen - not to mention the very Stephen King preoccupation with young kids touching each other and playing 'You show me yours' that made the childhood scenes even more creepy - and that was before he kicked his pet dog so hard that he needed his jaw wiring. Yikes - why am I supposed to care about this man exactly?

For lovers of Stoner-esque characters only. ( )
  AdonisGuilfoyle | Oct 15, 2021 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 41) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
The story was almost Dickensian in its complexity and dealt primarily with history teacher Tom Crick, whose barren wife Mary is driven to snatch a baby in the Lewisham Safeway, in south London, precipitating mental his breakdown and professional ruin. The main thrust of the story, however, concerns the difficult pathway through personal history that leads to these events, as told by "Cricky" during highly unorthodox history lessons. "At once a history of England, a Fenland documentary and a fictional autobiography," enthused the Observer, "this is a beautiful, serious and intelligent novel, admirably ambitious and original."
 

» Lisää muita tekijöitä (5 mahdollista)

Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
Swift, Grahamensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetvahvistettu
Häilä, ArtoKääntäjämuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Marcellino, FredKannen suunnittelijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu

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For Candice
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"And don't forget," my father would say, as if he expected me at any moment to up and leave to seek my fortune in the wide world, "whatever you learn about people, however bad they turn out, each one of them has a heart, and each one of them was once a tiny baby sucking his mother's milk . . . "
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Children, be curious.  Nothing is worse (I know it) than when curiosity stops.  Nothing is more repressive than the repression of curiosity.  Curiosity begets love.  It weds us to the world. (pg.206)
Though the popular notion of revolution is that of categorical change, transformation - a progressive leap into the future - yet almost every revolution contains within it an opposite if less obvious tendency: the idea of a return.
History is that impossible thing: the attempt to give an account, with incomplete knowledge, of actions themselves undertaken with incomplete knowledge.
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia (1)

Set in the bleak Fen Country of East Anglia, and spanning some 240 years in the lives of its haunted narrator and his ancestors, Waterland is a book that takes in eels and incest, ale-making and madness, the heartless sweep of history and a family romance as tormented as any in Greek tragedy. " Waterland, like the Hardy novels, carries with all else a profound knowledge of a people, a place, and their interweaving.... Swift tells his tale with wonderful contemporary verve and verbal felicity.... A fine and original work." --"Los Angeles Times"

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