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The Leftovers Hardcover – Aug 30 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Canada (Aug. 30 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307356388
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307356383
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 15.5 x 3.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 567 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #160,061 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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3.8 out of 5 stars
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Swystun TOP 50 REVIEWER on Nov. 21 2011
Format: Hardcover
As I read The Leftovers, I kept envisioning how my little piece of suburbia would be impacted if a random number of us just vanished. Would the community and families be brought closer together or would the event create even more social schisms? Author Perrotta terms the disappearances "the Sudden Departure" while a few of his characters call it the Rapture. To his credit, the book explores religion without it dominating the entire exercise.

Instead we view reactions and the action primarily through the Garvey family. They are believable enough but the angst we witness is surprisingly bland. In fact, dysfunctional life continues with this one inexplicable event replacing the other things that would otherwise occupy people or cause them to complain, such as, terrorism, the economy, global warming. As the novel progresses, we witness the suburbanites slide back into Cheever territory with affairs, lust, idleness, and a McDonald's-like comforting routine. The book evoked memories of The Ice Storm and American Beauty.

Most interesting to me were the new organizations that boomed following the Sudden Departure. There are the Barefoot People, the Healing Hug Movement, and the much more disturbing Guilty Remnant. These constructs are plausible as people search for meaning. Without a doubt the book is thought-provoking and it's first half engrossing. However, the remainder of the book failed to engage with the author seeming to lose his big idea.
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By Kara on July 16 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought the book after seeing the first episode of the new HBO series. It was a good read and well written, but it lacked any sort of ending, it was like the text just stopped. I'm curious to know if there will be a sequel to the book because the story is pretty interesting. I need answers!!!
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Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed this book. The description didn't really get me excited but I chose to read it because of the reviews. It was a "New York Times" Notable Book, "Oprah Magazine" Favourite Book of the Year and one of NPR's Top Ten Novels of 2011. I was not disappointed. It was thought provoking and captured me from the first few pages. I read this book within 24 hours - a far cry from the three weeks it took me to finish the last book I picked up.

The book follows several central characters (most from an immediate family) through their journey after "The Rapture" - or was it something else? Time is divided into Before and After and we watch as some characters rebuild their lives while others just simply give up. All struggle with what the apocalyptic event means. Very little time is spent on the "How" or "Why" this event occurred. Instead, the writer focuses his energy on the "What happens now?" to the ones left behind.
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By J. da Silva on Aug. 20 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A few years ago, I read Perrota's "Little Children" and "Abstinence Teacher" and I enjoyed them very much. They read like a movie. Besides, all characters seem immensely believable - painfully similar to people around us. All in all, plots, images and characters made for excellent novels.

Unfortunately, the same can't be said about "The Leftovers". The premise of this book - the rapture - is a difficult one. This time, we are supposed to imagine characters living in this science fiction scenario and reacting to the rapture. For me, it was difficult to empathize, believe or like the characters.

Still, if I didn't fall in love with this novel, I still recognize Perrota's talents as a good writer. In short, a three star novel.
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