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An Awfully Big Adventure Paperback – Feb 6 2003


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Abacus (Feb. 6 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0349116156
  • ISBN-13: 978-0349116150
  • Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 19.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 181 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #525,236 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Paperback
Stella that I could relate to. It's a quick read and definitely worth picking up. It's a very secretive book, much like its heroine. She's a strange one.
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By sweetmolly on Jan. 23 2002
Format: Paperback
This spare little (205 pages) novel doesn't waste a word, yet signifies volumes. The highly honored Ms. Bainbridge, winner of the prestigious Whitbread Prize and short-listed (six times!) for the Booker Prize amply displays what all the fuss is about. She is that good.
The book is hard to categorize. It isn't a coming-of-age, a psychological thriller, a dazzling Peter Pan parable; it is all these things and more.
Stella raised in blue-collar, post WWII Liverpool is a troubled and troubling 15-year old who determinedly washed out of school and has been fixed up as a "student" (read gofer) at a provincial repertory company. She has no particular acting ambitions, but is certain she would be very good at it. We get a many-sided view of Stella; as she sees herself and as she is perceived by the people around her. Every scene and every word of dialogue interlocks like a jeweled timepiece. The reader is almost unaware of the ever-increasing momentum until it crashes upon you in a chilling finale. You think Ms. Bainbridge is through with you, but not quite. Just when you think you are utterly and completely emotionally drained, Ms. Bainbridge delivers a final twist, and now you know you are. I was left stunned.
An excellent example of fine prose. Highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback
This is a phenomenal book- but it is crucial to approach it with the right mindset. This is not a light comedy, or a fantasy about the joys and agonies of growing up. The laughs to be found here are dark, and the story is painful and disturbing. It is also deeply powerful and moving, full of richly created characters and brilliantly subtle parrallels to J.M. Barrie's classic play, "Peter Pan." Do not open this one expecting anything easy, but do expect to be moved if you are willing to lose yourself inside. Highest possible recommendation.
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Format: Paperback
This dark and dreary book set in post war Liverpool(mid-50s) is really drawn out and confusing. The story is that of Stella, a sixteen year old actress, as she learns the hard way where acting stops and reality begins. She chases the director, and in trying to get his love, romances an aging actor who turns out to be her father. Tha characters are poorly developed past names, except for Stella, but she unfortunately, is hard to follow. She doesn't act normally, and the reader is left to puzzle over her. Near the end of the novel, we find that she was abandoned by her mother as a baby and is left with the deep physcoloical scars. This book loses the reader on page one, making it hard for the reader to want to fumble through it.
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