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The Collector [Hardcover]

John Fowles
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)

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Book Description

December 1963
From the author of THE MAGUS, a novel first published by Jonathan Cape in 1963. A withdrawn, unloved butterfly collector wins a fortune on the football pools, and this enables him to abduct a young art student and keep her in the cellar of his newly-bought home. She tries to understand her captor but becomes repulsed by his mentality.

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Product Details

Product Description

From Library Journal

Fowles launched his career with The Collector, which was welcomed with great critical enthusiasm, including that of LJ's reviewer, who found it "a distinguished first novel" (LJ 8/63). Mantissa, on the other hand, was a departure from the author's more popular material and received only a marginal response (LJ 9/1/82).
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


“Brilliant. An artist of great imaginative power.”
Sunday Times --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant! Jan. 16 2004
Fantastic book. His writing style is rare and wonderful. You don't often read a book and really get into the minds of the characters the way you do with this book.
I wonder how much Stephen King was influenced by John Fowles writing style? Definite similarities.
I'm officially a John Fowles fan now and will collect first editions of his other books as well.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Collector Jan. 6 2012
By Pithy
Sharp, overall effect is well written with realistic clarity and points of view. Transfixed by the characters. The plot was probably shocking in its day. Channeling Anne Frank
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5.0 out of 5 stars A broken Butterfly's wing. Feb. 20 2004
Mr Fowles has such a gift for getting the reader into the head of the subject. I really enjoyed this book. The way the book is crafted from the prospective of the two subjects was inventive and enlightening. I thought it was well balanced regarding the male female relationship and their reactions to the progress of the book. I would recomend this book to anyone looking to really excape for the duration of the book.
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By Phoebe
The Collector...well, where does one begin when concerning such an exhilirating but macabre piece? The reader witnesses the degenerating nature of a man who has been isolated from human society due to it's insoluble isolation and expectations of what one should be like. Clegg falls victim to the intricacies of love, and Miranda a figure who, is perhaps an emblem of the affects of the human condition (imposed by man, himself) who is severed but learns a vital lesson concerning the importance of life. If one wants a challenge, and desires to explore the different meanings interwoven into a sensitive yet powerfully written piece, then 'The Collector' is defiantely a text to read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book March 25 2003
I had to read this book for my Honors World Lit. class last year, and it was truely one of the best books ive ever read. Fowles splits the book up into to parts, the first half is through "Ferdinand's" view point, and the second half is through Miranda's. This allows more depth, along with the ability to understand the characters and what was going on in there minds when they did certain things, like stalking miranda and kidnapping her. i never saw the end of the book coming, it was couldnt put this book down so i finished it about 2 weeks before everyone in my class did (all of which agreed that it was an excellent read) and as i sat in class reading other books i would occasionally look up and see the expressions on my classmates faces as they came to some of the most shocking parts, especially some of miranda's responses to fred's love.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great one Jan. 28 2003
By A Customer
A young woman is abducted by a man who's grown obsessed with her in the previous months (or years), and wants her to fall in love with him too. But once she's in his power, he is at a loss what to do with her ..
The story is told from his point of view, and then hers, which provides the reader with a distorted yet deeply interesting account of the same events. John Fowles's observations are very cruel but also very, very true - people like Frederick, his hero, can never fit in. They can only use violence to serve their own purposes - but even that does not always work - as you cannot force somebody's mind .. in the story, the woman never acts as he expects or would like her to, and it's very obvious she doesn't belong to his world, and never will.
Which can only lead to tragedy, even if people don't want things to end this way.
The plot of the Collector reminds me of stories by Edogawa Ranpo or Ernesto Sabato - I remember the former wrote a weird novel about a masseur using women's bodies to fulfill his desire for Perfect Beauty.
That said, Fowles mostly reminds me of the best writers/analyzers of the human mind like Kellerman or Mac Ewan.
But he's also a great writer of his own right .. I first read the Collector more than 10 years ago, when I only was in my early teens ... and it's still as good as it was at the time.
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4.0 out of 5 stars good psychological thriller Nov. 15 2002
This book is divided into the abductor's point of view and the abductees. I was very drawn into it for the abductor as he described the difficulty of keeping his prisoner. Once I read about the girl and her thoughts, I hoped he would kill her. I won't spoil it for you. She needed to die though.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Masterful Storytelling July 11 2002
Set in London, Fowles takes us on a journey through a young man's dimented mind, whilst glimpsing into the dreams of an intelligent young girl. It pulls you into a tug of war over good intentions and obsessive romance. After stalking a young girl for some time, Fred Clegg fianlly "pins" her to the floor of his 17th century cottage's cellar. Beware of feeling sypathy for the wrong person... A good read, enaging, suspenseful, and mischevious. Not for the squeamish.
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