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Angelica: A Novel Paperback – Feb 12 2008


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks; Reprint edition (Feb. 12 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812972600
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812972603
  • Product Dimensions: 20 x 13 x 2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 272 g
  • Average Customer Review: 1.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #596,579 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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By Jean Francois Ponge TOP 1000 REVIEWER on July 17 2011
Format: Paperback
Et encore un roman victorien ! La mode en a été lancée par le succès de "La rose pourpre et le lys" de Michel Faber. Un gros livre, bien épais : 423 pages pour celui-ci, c'est déjà mieux que les 1142 pages du roman de Faber, mais c'est encore beaucoup trop par rapport à la matière du roman. Des phrases alambiquées, sans doute pour imiter le style de l'époque (?), et des personnages aux sombres penchants, tout en mensonges et en cachotteries. Résultat : on n'y comprend strictement rien ! Angelica est une charmante fillette de 10 ans, très belle et très intelligente, dont le papa décide un jour qu'elle ne doit plus dormir dans le lit conjugal, qui n'est pas destiné à ça. En gros, voilà la trame de l'histoire. Là-dessus se greffe, comme c'est de rigueur aujourd'hui quand on veut faire un gros bouquin, une vision éclatée de l'histoire, à travers la mère (Constance), le père (Joseph) et une étrange personne (Anne), qui va s'installer at home (ça se passe en Angleterre !) sous le prétexte de faire disparaître les mauvais esprits qui hantent la maison (en fait elle ne pense qu'à rançonner la crédule Constance). Qui divague, qui dit la vérité ? Bien entendu on ne le saura jamais. Constance est-elle folle lorsqu'elle croit que sa fille subit des sévices de la part des esprits ? Joseph, le vivisecteur de Beagles, a-t-il des attouchements avec sa fille, voire pire, lorsqu'il vient lui parler seul à seule ? Et que pense de tout ça Angelica ? Le lecteur peut tout imaginer et n'a qu'à remplir lui-même les pages manquantes. Franchement, pour lire victorien, mieux vaut se régaler avec "Tess d'Urberville" (Thomas Hardy). C'est en poche en plus...
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 28 reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
A thrilling book -- great for book clubs, too April 12 2007
By A Fussy reader - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I tried to read Arthur Phillip's last novel THE EGYPTOLOGIST but found the narrator and subject matter both daunting. I am so glad I did not give up on him because ANGELICA is one of the best novels I've read in a long long time. With his multiple narrators, Phillips demonstrates a rare ability to captures brilliantly the mind of both female and male characters but I was particularly moved by this ability to show the vulnerability of women in the Victorian era. It does not surprise me that reviewers have compared this novel not only with Henry James but with the haunting classic novel The Yellow Wallpaper by early feminist writer Charlotte Perkins Gilman. This is surely the first novel by Phillips that I would recommend whole heartedly to my book group (and we are fussy!!).
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
An Exceptional Novel April 13 2007
By Francie - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
It's rare that a contemporary writer can offer a compelling plot and such marvelous language skills that his reader is totally transported to another place and time. Phillips does exactly that with his latest novel, ANGELICA. I was drawn in with the opening sentence and completely fascinated until the last paragraph. It's a wonderful read, filled with insights - both historical and psychological - and will be perfect for my book club to discuss.
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
His best work yet April 12 2007
By A Reading Writer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I've read all three of Arthur Phillips's books and liked each one more than the last. Any moments of uneveness evident in "Prague" had disappeared by the time he wrote "The Egyptologist." It is rare in this disposable era to watch a writer grow into his talent, but that is exactly what Phillips has done. "Angelica" is a stellar, completely assured work. Whether you like Victorian ghost stories or just strong writing, this is your book.
27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
An Amazing Achievement April 12 2007
By Laurie Viera Rigler - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
ANGELICA is a book I could not put down. I could have finished it in two days but saved the last thirty pages for the following day, because I didn't want it to end. Aside from the masterful storytelling that gave me all the suspense and excitement of a good read, this is a brilliant and thought-provoking book on several levels. It is a deeply important book that explores the nature of reality, memory, and identity. If you are a woman, it is a must-read. It addresses our deepest secrets and our worst fears in a most imaginative and insightful manner. I still can hardly believe a man wrote this book. He is clearly a tremendously compassionate person who has done a great service by writing this book. I could discusss ANGELICA for hours--which makes it a perfect book group choice.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Great Entertainment April 19 2007
By Page Turner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I'm using "entertainment" in the way it would have been used in the world of the novel - applicable to high art as well as low. First and foremost, the book is a terrific read. Phillips holds his cards close for a while, but once you get a glimpse, you can't wait to see what else is in his hand. The writing achieves a pitch-perfect evocation of nineteenth-century novels, with moments of startling brilliance.

Phillips is after more than a clever and compelling plot, however, engaging profound questions concerning the nature of perception, the dynamics of family, and the obstacles to self-knowledge. The book will unsettle you - in the way any ambitious work of art should.

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