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Pilgrim Paperback – Aug 17 2000


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 534 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial Canada; 1st HarperPerennial Canada ed edition (Aug. 17 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0006485278
  • ISBN-13: 978-0006485278
  • Product Dimensions: 20.1 x 13.5 x 3.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 386 g
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #124,081 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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First Sentence
Inside the front doors of the Burgholzli Psychiatric Clinic in Zurich, a nursed named Dora Henkel and an orderly whose name was Kessler were waiting to greet a new patient and his companion. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

2.9 out of 5 stars
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By Brad Micklea on Jan. 25 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
I Wasn't sure the time bending premise was for me, but I loved it in the end. It was very compelling
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By "labibliophile" on April 17 2001
Format: Paperback
Pilgrim begins quite enigmatically and I began it with a lot of hope for one very special book. Unfortunately, the book's enigmatic qualities soon fizzle as the plot veers off course only to finish with many dangling threads. I do not mind dangling threads if the plot supports and calls for them, but Pilgrim seemed to need a little more. We simply don't know what Findley is trying to tell us.
Findley's writing, as always, is truly first rate and the book is enjoyable to read for this reason alone. While I found it difficult to identify with the character of Pilgrim (this could have been deliberate on Findley's part, I know, given the book's nature), I did enjoy the "intimate" look at Carl Jung and his long-suffering and loyal wife, Emma. How true this account of the Jung's is is not really important. This is fiction, not fact. What is important is that Findley gives us an engrossing portrait of a marriage that could stand a little work, especially on the part of Jung.
Pilgrim is a good book and one that I don't think anyone will regret reading. It is definitely not Findley's best and contains some plot holes that I think would have been better had they been filled.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Keith E Brenneman on Dec 24 2001
Format: Paperback
Timothy Findley has written another great work of art. Pilgrim, the central character, is a tragic figure not because he gave his life for a great cause; but he is tragic because he cannot seem to die (or is he just a bit schizo?..hmmm). The novel focuses on themes of trust, loss and redemption. In the end, though, I began trusting more of the bit characters (ie. Jung's wife) and empathizing with her loss more than the central figures. One note of dissappointment. The book tends to lose a little steam at the end. We simply just wish Pilgrim could successfully end himself and thus the novel. Does he succeed? We are still uncertain.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Lauren Scaravelli on July 31 2001
Format: Paperback
I did not enjoy this book. It was painfully disjointed and not in a way that is simply hard to follow for those not familiar with challanging fiction, but instead, in a way that strives for intelligence but ends up with ridiculous babble. It also doesn't help that you never care about any of the characters becuase none of them are entirely likeable or fully explored. Pilgrim an entity of flesh and blood who has lived for an eternity and cannot die, intersting premise but it is never made interesting because it is like a foot note, like the rest of the characters. This is a mildly entertaining read at best.
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Format: Paperback
I found the story to be a better idea than reality. For someone so mysterious, Findley writes in an extraordinarily dry, organized, linear way. I could just imagine him consulting his 10 page outline, it never once enters into the mysterious, way too rational, really. It should have been called Jung, not Pilgrim, because it was really a story about Jung and for that it was good, very interesting, but Pilgrim we never realy get to know. The majority of the book is about Jung with occasional spatterings of Pilgrim's POV. Pilgrim's POV seemed quite sparse, I don't think the author spent enough time on it. Also, the connection between Emma and Pilgrim should have been explored more for my taste, but really, he was trying to show too many different POVs in one book, that is too hard to do I think. Ken Kesey's Sometimes a Great Notion did that well but he didnt have an immortal character who had lived since the beginning of time. I feel a little short-changed, after all the time I invested reading this 500+ page novel, I wish I could have known more of Pilgrim a character I know I would've adored if I could've known him better. He' strying to do too much, showing Pilgrim's relation with Davinci, Wilde, these things take time to develop he just gives it 5 pages, not enough time, it seems fake, unless we are to believe he really is crazy and so none of these things happened. That would be the only reason to leave it so sparsely told. Good story if he would complete it, fill it out, it fills like an outline, a skeleton.
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By A Customer on March 9 2001
Format: Paperback
Beautifully written and richly imagined, this is a fascinating novel that challenges historical reality and presents psychology and philosophy in a unique way. Interesting portrait of Jung and a cast of wonderfully realized characters. A thoughtful and thought provoking journey through time and the human psyche.
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By A Customer on Feb. 14 2001
Format: Paperback
This work is entirely different from anything I've ever read. I appreciated the brooding tone of the story and the undercurrent of foreshadowing leading up to its climax. The ending was a little unorthodox and left me with a need for closure, however, I believe Findley does this purposefully as a way to compliment the mysterious and spiritual undertones of the plot. A comfortable, soothing read. Felt as if I were in a reverie, I could almost set it to music.
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