State Of Wonder: A Novel Paperback – May 7 2012
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“An engaging, consummately told tale.” (New York Times)
“Emotionally lucid. . . . Patchett is at her lyrical best when she catalogues the jungle.” (The New Yorker)
“This is surely the smartest, most exciting novel of the summer.” (Washington Post)
“The Amazon setting is something Patchett does rather marvelously.… The book is serious, but also so pleasurable that you hope it won’t end.” (NPR)
“Outlandishly entertaining…[with] a brilliantly constructed plot.” (Elle)
“Packs a textbook’s worth of ethical conundrums into a smart and tidily delivered story. . . . Ms. Patchett presents an alluring interplay between civilization and wilderness, between aid and exploitation.” (Wall Street Journal)
“The large canvas of sweeping moral issues, both personal and global, comes to life through careful attention to details, however seemingly mundanefrom ill-fitting shoes and mosquito bites to a woman tenderly braiding another woman’s hair.” (O, the Oprah Magazine)
“A spellbinder from bestselling author Patchett. . . . Thrilling, disturbing and moving in equal measureseven better than Patchett’s breakthrough Bel Canto.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))
“A superbly rendered novel. . . . Patchett’s portrayal is as wonderful as it is frightening and foreign. Patchett exhibits an extraordinary ability to bring the horrors and the wonders of the Amazon jungle to life, and her singular characters are wonderfully drawn. . . . Powerful and captivating.” (Library Journal (starred review))
“A thrilling new novel. . . . The world imagined in this novel is unusually vivid. . . . Reading State of Wonder is a sensory experience, and even after it’s over you’ll keep hearing the sounds of insects, and your own head will still be hot.” (No Source)
“A thrilling new novel. . . . The world imagined in this novel is unusually vivid. . . . Reading State of Wonder is a sensory experience, and even after it’s over you’ll keep hearing the sounds of insects, and your own head will still be hot.” (MORE Magazine)
“Patchett makes the jungle jump off the page…This is Patchett’s best effort since The Patron Saint of Liars and, yes, that includes Bel Canto” (Shelf Awareness)
“Extraordinary. . . . Is there nothing the prodigiously talented Ann Patchett can’t do? . . . Patchett’s last knockout pages proceed full-speed ahead, with more twists and turns and trachery than the Amazon River. Nothing is as it seems, and the ending is as shocking as it’s satisfying.” (Boston Globe)
“In fluid and remarkably atmospheric prose, Patchett captures not only the sights and sounds of the chaotic jungle environment but also the struggles and sacrifice of dedicated scientists.” (Booklist )
“Patchett is a master storyteller who has an entertaining habit of dropping ordinary people into extraordinary and exotic circumstances to see what they’re made of. [An] expansive page-turner…Patchett’s fluid prose dissolves in the suspense of this out-there adventure…that readers will hate to see end.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review) )
“[A] spellbinder from bestselling author Patchett[.][...] Thrilling, disturbing and moving in equal measures—even better than Patchett’s breakthrough Bel Canto (2001).” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review) )
“[A] superbly rendered novel[.][...]Patchett’s portrayal is as wonderful as it is frightening and foreign. Patchett exhibits an extraordinary ability to bring the horrors and the wonders of the Amazon jungle to life, and her singular characters are wonderfully drawn. [P]owerful and captivating.” (Library Journal (starred review) ) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Set in the Amazon, Dr. Marina Singh, a research scientist with a Minnesota pharmaceutical company, finds herself on a remarkable quest. She is looking for Dr. Annick Swenson, who has been working in the Amazon on a valuable new drug for years. The company is unable to gauge her progress and so first sends Marina's colleague, Anders Eckman, to find Dr. Swenson. He dies under mysterious circumstances so Marina is sent to see what she can find out about Anders' death and Dr. Swenson's research.
From there the story takes many twists and turns. Marina gets sidetracked by a young Australian couple who is protecting Dr. Swenson, but eventually she does get to the research station in the jungle. Dr. Swenson, can be ruthless, but also strong and principled. While discovering a tree whose bark could lead to increased fertility in women, she stumbles upon another cure - one which she is protecting - even from the pharmaceutical company she works for because she fears they will not want to develop it.
I really felt like I was in the Amazon while reading this book. I loved all the characters, who are often drawn with great honesty and affection.
I thought the book was amazing and now I am going back and reading all of Patchett that I can get my hands on. I'm 70 pages into Bel Canto and loving it.
I would recommend that the reader think about how the above three points relate to the book "State of Wonder."
State of Wonder by Ann Patchett was a good book. It was fun to read. The words, sentences and paragraphs were well-constructed. The whole book seemed to flow like an Amazon river that at times I would lose track of the plot. I enjoyed the sense of adventure in the story and I enjoyed Marina's character. I don't think she was overly ambitious, nor do I think she had a purpose in her life. Like the early years of Buster Keaton, I believe Marina's character embraced life rather then trying to control it. I believe the book to be mostly about Marina's character however there is no doubt that Ann Patchett did touch on some very modern 2011 issues.
The book acquires substance in layers, you get hooked. The main character, Marina, is 42 years old, a bit of a misfit hiding away from her life in a pharmaceutical lab, having given up surgery over a hasty mistake, not getting over father's issues, which are not even clearly known to us... I also completely disagree with her sluttish attitude at the end, no matter how many excuses Ann fabricates in order to save the face of her main character.
The story is enticing though. And it surely looks like Marina would get over her lassitude, her cocooned environment, her ludicrous fears and would learn how to live, and more importantly, that she has to, clock is ticking and we all have a limited license on life.
Ann makes us travel to Brazil, to the Amazon jungle, the tribes(more details about the Lakashi, who she forces Marina to live with). The plot focuses on a discovery that is of groundbreaking importance to science, so Marina''s journey is full of symbols. The descriptions of characters and places, of attitudes and circumstances are incredibly well tackled, casually thrown in, although of high importance. (...)
To read the entire review go to allwords.ca.
From start to finish the reader is emersed in the Amazon. This book is so vividly well written you feel like you are there with the characters every time you pick it up. You feel the bugs, the heat, and moisture of all the foilage that make up the forest. You "are" gently floating in a boat with your hand dipping in the water as you look around you at all things beautiful and unknown in a state of wonder.
The pharmaceutical company plot is very intriguing, and hooks you right from the start as you follow the characters from the city to the amazon.
Also weaved around and inside this main story; Ann Patchett flawlessly writes about her characters loves & loss, emotions and mistakes; and the lives lived in between. This is a beautifully written book that leaves you thinking for a while after. This is one of Ann Patchetts Best!!
Most recent customer reviews
Had a very hard time reading this book, just blah and very draggy and very dark and not sunshiny like it was suppossed to be when they went to the beach. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Rhonda
After reading Bell Canto, which I admit took a bit of time for me to get into, but then I loved it, I found State of Wonder to be a great letdown. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Greer Jansen
It felt as if I was really there experiencing it all; in Venezuela, in the jungle, part of the list of characters, learning how to live in the jungle. Read morePublished on Jan. 29 2014 by Susan Taylor
This is a review from someone who isn't an avid reader.
Not enough to keep me attached to the novel, near the middle of the book, felt like it was a chore to read because I... Read more
After reading Bel Canto, which is a truly sublime piece of writing by author Ann Patchett, I thought I would give State of Wonder a whirl. Read morePublished on Nov. 30 2013 by AMR
I read this. I waited for the story to pick up and get going. It didn't, however it did resinate something....Published on June 21 2013 by Clinkdrew
If you already have an unfavorable view of pharmaceutical companies this book will do nothing to assuage that view. Read morePublished on May 28 2012 by little lady blue
My mum recommended this book to me after she'd read it as I work in Fertility. I, however, found it very boring, slow and pointless. I would not recommend this book to anyone. Read morePublished on May 12 2012 by louise mcneill
Although I really enjoyed Bel Canto, this book definitely tops that one. I was drawn in right from the start, and now that I am finished it, I miss the characters, and find myself... Read morePublished on May 5 2012 by A. Houston