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5.0 out of 5 stars Until I Find You
You need to be an avid reader to get through this 800 page book. I wondered why it had to be so long, but this story takes us to other parts of the world and gave me a better understanding of why people get tatoos.
I laughed, cried, enjoyed reading and then cried some more at the end. Don't be in a hurry to get through this one. I'll re-read it as I tend to speed...
Published 16 months ago by Ms. Constance V. Leeman

versus
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Probably John Irving's Worst Book
This turgid lump of a novel continues the sad decline in Mr. Irving's work that we saw with <i> The Fourth Hand</i>. It was a chore to finish, and I would have given up, except that Mr. Irving has written so many great books, I kept expecting this one to get better or for something clever and great to happen. It really never does.
The story follows the life...
Published on Sept. 1 2005 by Peter Leveque


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5.0 out of 5 stars Until I Find You, Dec 19 2012
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This review is from: Until I Find You (Paperback)
You need to be an avid reader to get through this 800 page book. I wondered why it had to be so long, but this story takes us to other parts of the world and gave me a better understanding of why people get tatoos.
I laughed, cried, enjoyed reading and then cried some more at the end. Don't be in a hurry to get through this one. I'll re-read it as I tend to speed read and skim over parts. This is the third J. Irving book I've read since September and I loved every one.
C.Leeman
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4.0 out of 5 stars He mentioned Halifax!, May 10 2012
By 
Mary Lavers "CozyLittleBookJournal" (Dartmouth, NS, Canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Until I Find You (Paperback)
It was alright. John Irving seems to be re-writing his own story the way he wished it had happened--the hairy sexually dominant older girl, for example. But a few things were left sloppy and the author's voice could be so frustrating. As with all John Irving novels, I wanted to shout at him for drawing all the wrong conclusions about people, yet I couldn't put the book down.

For more please visit my blog, CozyLittleBookJournal!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved It, Jan. 10 2007
By 
D. P. Bonk (Oakville, Ontario Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Until I Find You (Paperback)
This is the first book of John Irving that I have read and I have been truly enjoying it. I looked at the size of the book and hesitated starting it but once I got into it I got hooked.

I think that the story can relate better to guys and those that enjoy trips into peoples darker (real) side exposing who they are and why. The author writes in a manner that I am enjoying and I like how he tells the story twice; once as remembered by a four year old (as it happens) and the second time as the adult speaking to those involved. He finds out that reality was not what he was told and remembers.

It is obviously a story that you either love or hate as displayed by the reviews; I am on the side of loving it and encourage you to see for yourself. I will be reading other John Irving books as a result of Until I Find You.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Probably John Irving's Worst Book, Sept. 1 2005
By 
Peter Leveque (Calgary, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Until I Find You (Hardcover)
This turgid lump of a novel continues the sad decline in Mr. Irving's work that we saw with <i> The Fourth Hand</i>. It was a chore to finish, and I would have given up, except that Mr. Irving has written so many great books, I kept expecting this one to get better or for something clever and great to happen. It really never does.
The story follows the life and career of Jack Burns, a successful movie actor with a troubled childhood. When the story opens, Jack is a child who has been abandoned by his father and living with his mother, a relatively famous tattoo artist. The stage seems set for the sort of quirky characters and situations which Mr. Irving writes so well. But what follows is a lot of stuff we've seen before, and in better Irving books: Jack spends time at an all boys school in Maine, he is a talented member of the wrestling team (in one of the smaller weight divisions), we journey through the Red Light District in Amsterdam not once, but twice.
But the books greatest weakness is that none of the characters act or talk like real people. John Irving has always been able to create unusual characters and make them credible. This does not happen here. Almost every woman young Jack meets wants to or does) rape him, every character seems to use the word 'penis' conversationally at least a dozen times and Jack Burns is the center of every other character's existence, no matter how trivial his contact with those characters has been.
Hardly anything seems to be credible. Jack's movies (which sound dreadful) are all successful, his companion Emma's novel (which sounds unreadable) is a huge hit. The sequence at the Academy Awards comes off as terribly self indulgent.
Stay away from this book. As Billy Rainbow might say, it blows, and not in a good way.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A liitle Overlong but good, July 19 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: Until I Find You (Hardcover)
I like contemporary life novels with a real human feel and this ticked the boxes even if I needed a lot of coffee breaks at times.Very moving
Also try: A Long Way Down - Nick Hornby; You Are Here - Steve Horsfall
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars "This is not a 'story', nor a 'tale', nothing of the sort..., Sept. 17 2006
By 
Schmadrian - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Until I Find You (Paperback)
...it's a 'chronicle', and therefore, fails miserably to entertain as it might have."

As Diane Lane's character says in 'Must Love Dogs': "This is disturbing on *so* many levels..."

My then-gal and I were exiting an Irving reading in Toronto just over a decade ago, both laughing 'Now *there's* a therapist's wet-dream!' This has been confirmed in 'Until I find you'. Not that everything a writer puts on the page is necessarily reflective of their psyche, but if there had ever been any question about them up to this point, this novel surely nails just about all of Mr Irving's 'issues'.

But you know, it's not the subject matter I took issue with as I *forced* myself to complete 'Until'. It's the fact that it's really just a -seemingly- endless procession of 'and then this happened, and then this, and then this'... Let me put it this way, and maybe this is *all* I need to say:

If this had been written by a newcomer, it *never* would have been published.

I could go on and on, but I can see by the other reviewers' comments that either a) we had an entirely different experience (I can't for the life of me understand what anyone who liked/loved it saw in it!) or b) they're far better equipped to point out just why 'Until I find you' failed so miserably to entertain.

I'm a writer, and Mr Irving used to be in my personal 'Hall of Fame', one of the writers I looked up to, even aspired to write as well as. Now... Now I don't know what to think. I feel disappointed, I feel betrayed, I feel incredibly angry.

Would I recommend this novel? Only to writers as an example of what *not* to do when trying to tell and engaging story. Only as a paragon of self-indulgence. Only as proof that as your literary rep rises, you're cut more and more slack.

If it turned out that 'Until I find you' (renamed by me 'Until I finish reading you') was a piss-take by Irving, I wouldn't be surprised. I think I'd actually feel some relief.

Right. I'm now tempted to re-read 'Winter's Tale' by Helprin or 'Fall on My Knees' by AMM to clean my palate and reaffirm my belief in the power of storytelling to transform us.
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4.0 out of 5 stars On the positive side, Feb. 17 2010
By 
This review is from: Until I Find You (Paperback)
Very quirky indeed, like Irving's other work, only more so. It's the life story of Jack, and starts with his perceptions of his mother and father as a 4 year old boy, then takes us through his adolescence and young adulthood, giving insight into the pain of sexual abuse he suffers along the way.

The reviews so far miss a couple of insights I particularly enjoyed:

1. That memory is elastic, unreliable, changeable. The story starts with one premise, and then upends the reader halfway through with the opposite premise. WE are actually given the memory of a 4 year old, locked into our thinking for several hundred powerfully written pages, and then as new information comes in for Jack, we find the certainty of those 4 year old's memories crumbling.

2. I felt new insight into what it might be like to be a young person suffering sexual abuse. The primary emotion is not anger, as I would have thought, but confusion and passivity. Irving gets inside Jack's confusion and passivity in a way that is sure to make readers uncomfortable, and I think that's the gift of the book.

So, for what it's worth, a nice solid "4" for me.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Dissapointed, Jan. 5 2009
By 
Val (British Columbia, Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Until I Find You (Paperback)
I am a big fan of Irving's books normally. I find his characters very quirky, yet believable, and they usually draw me right in. This book, which I've heard is based partly on Irving's own life, doesn't do that. The main character starts off as a 4 year old boy, and throughout the book he has women all wanting him. I found it hard to believe that a small boy could sexually attract everyone from early grade student girls, to nuns, and any other female alive. At any rate, the character didn't ring true to me, and this made the book very hard to get through.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Underwhelming, May 3 2008
By 
Glenn C. Marcoux "Irving Fan" (Vancouver) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Until I Find You (Paperback)
Irving's worst book to date and I've read them all....Hopefully just a bump in the road for him although The Fourth Hand was pretty lame as well. Hopefully he can regain the form that brought us Son of the Circus and A Widow for a Year.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Feast on the Golden Nectar of the Frail Spirit, Aug. 9 2005
This review is from: Until I Find You (Hardcover)
John Irving's newest offering - UNTIL I FIND YOU - is a somewhat of a surprise gift. It's highly anticipated and the result with anything so highly anticipated is either total joy or total disappointment. I personal loved every bitter word of the sad story. It truly is on the same level with MY FRACTURED LIFE - the same disection of the abuse that fosters the narcasist personality that can sturggles to survive in any world but the shallow hollow world of Hollywood; yet in that world thrives in sad glory. In that light, this book shines with a brilliance few other authors come close to. Those who shy from such sad and brital brilliance will be terribly disappointed, of course. But those who adore it and thrive on its dark flavor will embrace UNTIL I FIND YOU with the same passion.
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Until I Find You
Until I Find You by John Irving (Paperback - May 30 2006)
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