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The Cave Paperback – May 16 2003


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux; First Edition edition (May 16 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0374529167
  • ISBN-13: 978-0374529161
  • Product Dimensions: 22 x 14 x 1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 222 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,090,124 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Hardcover
I was surprised to see the book described in reviews as a thriller. Although it has some elements associated with that genre, thriller-readers will probably be disappointed with The Cave. Aside from the fact that it's a very fine piece of literature--something rarely true of thrillers--it's primarily an enchanting (and ultimately chilling) tale of love and fate. The translation was so smooth I wondered if it hadn't been written in English to begin with. It has the kind of weight that is usually only seen in the work of European masters--Peter Handke and Friedrich Durrenmatt come to mind. Speaking as a novelist, I have to say that I wish I'd written it myself.
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Format: Hardcover
I had some trouble getting into the first part of this novel but that probably had more to do with the fact that I started it on a train straight after finishing another book and hadn't given my brain time to adjust to the change of pace (in my head I always finish books faster than I start them).
However, once I entered the second section (the flashback to childhood), I was hooked. Wonderfully crafted this is a thriller less reliant on thrills than subtle revelations.
As the book moves towards its conclusion the subject matter gets progressively more uncomfortable and unpleasant but, conversely, to book begins to delight more and more.
The Cave can be read in one sitting (or two train journeys!) and is likely to be a novel you will want to read again and again.
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Format: Hardcover
Tim Krabbe's The Cave is a beautiful little book that is ultimately sad. Its tale twists over many decades and three continents and then twists back again. The beauty of the writing and the style of the author is how he is able to create so much in so little space. The reader understands the characters quickly and sympathizes with them instantly. These are basically good people moved to do things they would not otherwise do by an irrestible force in the form of a man, Axel. The themes of lost chances and the interconnectedness of everyone are present and poignant throughout the novel. The suspense is in the first part of the novel but the strength of the story is in the revealing of the tapestry that created the action. This novel was a joy, albeit bitter sweet. Worth the time it will take to finish this beautiful little tale.
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By Dr. Steve Irving on Dec 20 2000
Format: Hardcover
The theme of the book is hinted at in the description, toward the end of this novel, of a game that a mother plays were her two sons: "She would name two events, and they had to come up with a way for the second to result from the first. Someone in Rio chokes on his pudding, someone in Paris buys a box of thumbtacks twenty years later. It was always possible; you could always come up with something that made sense."
Puzzles, twists, interconnections are all laid over what seems like a straightforward suspense novel. The Cave is a beautiful little book, full of sweetness and irony, coincidence and inevitability.
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Format: Hardcover
I became really involved in reading this story to the point where I couldn't put it down. It's a small book, but a very complex story, that goes back and forth in time, where it may seem confusing at times but by the end it all falls into place. It was at this point I found myself saying this book would make a great movie. It involves two friends Egon Wagter and Axel van de Graaf who are from Amsterdam. The story weaves from between the time they meet at camp on vacation at the age of fourteen through the years to adulthood. Axel becomes such a part of Egon's whole life, always seeming to turn up at the most crucial times. It's a story of unforgettable characters and betrayal in the deepest sense. I felt sorry for Egon, his life seemed so controlled in so many ways by this one man, Axel.
I really enjoyed Tim Krabbe's writing, it makes you really pay attention. It's the type of book you want to read again to make sure you didn't miss anything, like a movie that you seem to learn more about every time you watch it again. Now I know why this was a bestseller in the Netherlands.
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