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Far to Go Hardcover – Aug 1 2010


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 280 pages
  • Publisher: House of Anansi Press; Canadian First edition (Aug. 1 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0887842380
  • ISBN-13: 978-0887842382
  • Product Dimensions: 20.6 x 13.5 x 3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 499 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #119,689 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Most helpful customer reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By TimI on March 1 2012
Format: Hardcover
Far to Go is powerful and compelling writing. Pick weaves a well-researched slice of history into a moving story that will stay with you. I'm already looking forward to her next book.
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By Rodge TOP 50 REVIEWER on March 10 2014
Format: Hardcover
This book pulled me in with its premise but it soon became clear that execution was not going to follow through. A story of Jews in Czechoslovakia on the brink of WW2 the lines of the narrative are predictable and the writing is not good enough to make one read this for that alone. I found this book on the whole to be less interesting than the subject deserves.
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By BruceW on April 16 2013
Format: Hardcover
The story is beautifully constructed, and I really lived alongside the characters.
By the time I reached the final chapter I was almost totally convinced that this was not a work of fiction but was a story taken from a daily journal.
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Format: Paperback
I finished reading Alison Pick's "Far To Go". It is a well-researched novel that puts you in the pre WW2 time period as if you were there in person. It is beautifully written and heart wrenching. It's images and characters have been residing in my thoughts since I finished. The present-day-character's story that is interwoven with the past so well describes the emotional aftermath of the war.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By CK on Jan. 7 2011
Format: Hardcover
A beautifully written, spellbinding piece of work. The characters are compelling and the story's plot twists and turns in large and small ways. Every detail is captivating and full of suspense. The kind of novel that sweeps the reader away into another time and place. Very moving, layered, and powerful. Pick is a wonderfully talented writer. Strongly recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Cyn on April 2 2011
Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed the story and the way it was written. I really made you think about the lives of those involved in the war and how little things cause people to make decisions that may be entirely wrong and have profound effects. It was thoughtful character development and good writing.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Paolo TOP 500 REVIEWER on Aug. 13 2011
Format: Hardcover
The Toronto based Alison Pick goes over somewhat familiar ground in her tale of a family of well-to-do Sudetenland jews and the events of their lives leading up to and following its annexation by Germany in 1948. At the heart of the story are the Bauers, Pavel who is a Jewish factory owner, his glamorous wife Annelies, their son Pepik and their maid Martha who narrates. Ultimately it is the story of the Kindertransport, for as the Bauers see that their options for escaping ever fiercer grip of Nazi rule diminish their only hope is to see Pepik out of the country safely.

The other aspect of the story is that of another Annelies, a holocaust researcher who is trying to track down Pavel in modern day Canada so that between them they can piece together the true story of what happened back in Czechoslovakia during the war.

This book suffers from the comparison to far greater books such as the immeasurably better Austerlitz by WG Sebald for all its haunting melancholic meta-fictional brilliance, or one can even look to last year's booker prize longlist for a more interesting holocaust novel in Simon Mawer's 'the Glass Room'. Alison Pick barely moves her narrative above the pedestrian and does nothing with her story that has not been done many times before.

Stylistically too the book has its flaws and one would never guess the author to be a poet because her symbolism and analogy are drab and obvious. Pick also hit against a pet peeve of mine by the pointless use of well-known foreign words to try and add an international flair, something usually the preserve of mediocre travel books.

Pick has clearly been inspired to tell the story of her own family history so I can understand why she has chosen to write it, but it's predictable conventionality means that it never lifts itself above the mediocre and I am at a loss as to explain how it made it into the Booker long list. I would be very disappointed to see it make the short list.
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