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Fall on Your Knees [Hardcover]

Ann-Marie MacDonald
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (205 customer reviews)

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Most helpful customer reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
By Serena
Format:Paperback
I am having trouble starting this, because I'm still in shock over the vast amount of negative reviews that I have just read. Even if you don't like the storyline or "relate" to the characters, I am shocked that someone could come up with something negative to say because the writing alone is hands down breathtaking. I did not think it was possible for someone to write so magnificently and yet be an unknown name. It is the most amazing debut novel I have ever read of any author.
To be honest, the beginning is a little slow. It took me longer than usual to get into it. However, around page 100, I couldn't put it down. I was so intrigued by every single character. It didn't matter if I related to them or not, what mattered was that I sympathized with them and felt that I knew them. I felt as though I had grown up with the Piper children, and for days after finishing I couldn't stop thinking about Lily or Mercedes or Katherine.
There is no denying that the family is more than slightly dysfunctional. As dysfunctional as it is, it is still completely realistic. Fall on your knees is a heartbreaking story of one family. For me, as much as I wanted to hate certain characters, such as John, I couldn't because no matter how horrible he could be, you also see how amazing he could be. You LOVE these characters, even if you don't want to. You get angry and sad, but still, through it all, you feel for them, and see why they do what they do.
It's been a long time since I have been so touched by the characters in a book. They became more than characters to me. They were my friends. I cried when they cried and I laughed when they laughed. The story is depressing and dark. It is heartbreaking and pretty emotionally draining, to be honest.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Fall on Your Knees May 23 2002
Format:Paperback
One of the darkest and most depressing books I have read. If that's what you're looking for, this one is well written.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Maybe for some, not for most... May 7 2002
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
As an employee for [a local book store], the staff and I couldn't figure out what the big deal was about this book. I took it out on a loan, and I am certainly glad I did-- I would not buy this book after reading it. It's horribly redundant, terribly long, and overall confusing and difficult to read. The characters I couldn't care about-- they never touched me that way. Oprah Club books are depressing and full of angst- this novel was no different. Even still, it was hard to get into and in the end, after 2 days of a struggling read, I was glad it was over. It never gave me any lessons on life or an enlightened perspective- all it made me do was fall asleep.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Loved it! Jan. 27 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Fascinating study of relationships, both human and divine. Disturbing and thought provoking yet a celebration of the triumph of the human spirit over adversity.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning! Jan. 7 2013
By SG
Format:Paperback
This is one of the most spectacular debut novels I've ever come across. A very complicated story primarily concerning a single family but crossing through multiple generations and flipping back and forth in time. How she conceived of such a story let alone make it so compelling is truly beyond me. Every character is interesting, flawed, unpredictable and utterly captivating. In many ways it is a heartbreaking story but still filled with wonderful moments. I have seen a number of negative reviews on this site but I really don't understand how you couldn't be captured by this story. Fall On Your Knees gets my highest recommendation.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great book. July 26 2007
By Tara
Format:Paperback
This book is more than incredible. I randomly started reading it about three days ago, and I cannot put it down. There are so many different emotions that are processed throughout this book, and it makes the book so much better. There will be times when you feel like crying, and times when you are concerned or worried for a characted. Another thing I enjoyed about the book was the fact that you almost became the character when reading different parts.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fall-down good June 20 2005
Format:Paperback
I actually got this book on accident from some shady book club that mysteriously sent me five books and then tried to charge me for them. I have the hardcover version, and the cover art looked... boring. I neglected this book for a year.
The old saying "never judge a book by its cover" has never been more concise.
This book is an absolute work of art. The incredible depth of each character is unparalleled by anything else I have read. While "Fall On Your Knees" does contain some very controversial subjects, such as child molestation, it does not present itself in a distasteful manner. I was reminded of "Bark of the Dogwood" with its similar themes and great writing. The frailty and emotions of humankind are exquisitely revealed here. Cape Breton Island is painted into your mind, you can see it perfectly, from rocky cliffs over the ocean to clapboard houses all in a row. MacDonald is a master storyteller. She manages to completely envelop you in the lives of those whom she writes about, to the point that if you tell me I wasn't there to see all of this happen, I would have to catch myself before I told you that you were mistaken. Absolutely enthralling. Don't be like me and ignore this masterpiece. Buy a copy for yourself and every other person you know. It's that good.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable but not a "must" read
Thought this book was very good but story did not stay with me as other stories have. I remember enjoying the story at the time I was reading the book, but quickly forgetting about... Read more
Published on Nov. 16 2010 by Halifax Mary
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes Me Proud To Be Canadian
My mother gave this book to me to read when I was about sixteen and I think I have read it four times since. I give this book to friends and suggest it to new immigrants to Canada. Read more
Published on May 9 2010 by Brittany Levett
4.0 out of 5 stars Full of Raw Emotions
In this multi-layered novel about life in early 20th century Cape Breton Island, Macdonald treats her readers to a vivid and colorful look at a traditional east coast society torn... Read more
Published on March 21 2010 by Ian Gordon Malcomson
1.0 out of 5 stars Loathesome, manipulative drivel
A laundry list of perversions performed on and by people you can't care about. A waste of good reading time.
Published on Nov. 16 2008 by Elspeth
4.0 out of 5 stars captivating
I picked this up, and hardly ever put it down. The story was often disturbing, yet I need to know what would happen next.
A good read.
Published on July 14 2008 by kebmo
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful story, beautifully written
A co-worker of mine lent me this book and upon looking at its size, I said to myself I wont be able to finish this book within the month. Read more
Published on Dec 18 2007 by SK
5.0 out of 5 stars Exploring different forms of love
This was Ms MacDonald's debut novel It is black and bleak and full of secrets. Peopled by flawed yet believable characters, this was one of the most amazing novels I read in... Read more
Published on Sept. 1 2007 by Jennifer Cameron-Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars A dark but compelling story
MacDonald is a virtuoso.A slow start but stick with it. All of a sudden you're hooked, You won't be able to put it down. Not a light read, but worth the investment
Published on July 4 2007 by Mary Ellen
3.0 out of 5 stars Fall on Your Knees
Wow! I'm not sure how to react to this book. I give it 3 stars because I think it was wonderfully written. The story line is not what I would usually choose. Read more
Published on April 15 2005 by DreamyDeppMama
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