Her Fearful Symmetry Paperback – Jul 6 2010
|New from||Used from|
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
LONGLISTED FOR THE INTERNATIONAL IMPAC DUBLIN LITERARY AWARD
"An awesomely good read." Chatelaine
"Quirkily observed and rich on every level: plot, character, mood and theme.... She conjures a memorable world, and grants most of her characters happy endings, though perhaps not the ones they would have asked for." The Globe and Mail
"Entertaining.... The reader is pleasantly carried along by the author’s ability to create credible characters and her instinctive narrative gifts.... The most powerful parts of Her Fearful Symmetry...deal not with paranormal events but with the ordinary pleasures and frustrations of life." The New York Times
"A modern Victorian novel revolving around a London cemetery, ghostly hauntings and a well-kept secret.... A bewitching modern-gothic tale that is at once unsettling and intriguing." Chicago Sun-Times
"Talk about time travel: The novel blends the history of London’s famed Highgate Cemetery, the remarkable phenomena of mirror-image twins and the question of life after death into a ghost story that feels as if it could have been written a century ago." National Post
"Odd and disturbing but intensely mesmerizing and memorable. . . . Niffenegger spins such a riveting story--just like she did in The Time Traveler’s Wife--that suspending disbelief is a pleasure." The Miami Herald
About the Author
AUDREY NIFFENEGGER is a visual artist and a guide at Highgate Cemetery. In addition to the bestselling novels The Time Traveler's Wife and Her Fearful Symmetry, she is the author of three illustrated novels, The Three Incestuous Sisters,The Adventuress, and The Night Bookmobile, and the editor ofGhostly. She lives in Chicago and London.See all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
Her Fearful Symmetry has an intoxicating idea behind it: the idea of what happens after we die. And this is an idea that has been written about a million times before. What I enjoyed so much about The Time Traveler's Wife was that she took a subject like time travel and gave it a new twist, brought it out in a way that I hadn't seen before. Her Fearful Symmetry doesn't quite accomplish this task. I was still drawn into the world, the characters, the story...but there was something stilted about the whole thing, something a little less magical.
This book has many characters and the third person POV oscillates back and forth between their stories. Niffenegger weaves her theme of obsession well into each story. There is also the theme of (obviously) symmetry and mirror-images, of being attached to someone, whether that attachment is love, family, genetic, or otherwise. A few times she pushes this theme a bit too much, leaving her authorial fingerprints behind a few too many times.
Niffenegger's writing, as in her first book, is simple and effective. She tells a good story and the pacing works well, leaving me reading for hours on end without boredom. The last quarter of the book, however, contains some plot elements (which I can't delve into here for fear of ruining things) that were a bit difficult for me to swallow, believability-wise.Read more ›
Another reviewer has mentioned that the drama between the twins is overblown and beyond credulity and I absolutely have to agree. Even if the situational part of the plot were believable it doesn't even make sense within the relationships that she has depicted or the backgrounds that she alludes to. Everything in the novel is loosely stitched together by Niffenegger's passion for Highgate Cemetery and not much else.
I don't often feel that reading is a waste of my time - but in sitting down with this book, I most certainly did.
Her Fearful Symmetry started off with a completely different atmospheric hue. And in the beginning, I realised I had to shed any association I had to The Time Traveller's Wife. The author has a knack for researching a topic thoroughly and plunking it seamlessly into the background of a story line. The Highgate Cemetery is now indelibly flushed out for me in a way I would never have cursorily considered previously. I enjoyed learning about London, the Tube system, the ways of speech, and Vautravers.
I do, however, agree with other posts that the last part of the book completely veered away from the first and middle part. The characters began to behave in ways that were not aligned with their character. It felt like watching a slow train wreck that I was horrified for in two ways: 1) the story was unravelling towards travesty due to character inconsistency which is hard to accept/buy into and 2) the characters were behaving so out-of-character that I started to grieve them, separate from them to get distance from them and finish the book more quickly. By the end, I was skipping paragraphs so I could just get the essence, the plot and move towards completion.
I am not a fan of authors' losing the through-line of their characters. It reminded me somewhat, but nowhere as dramatic an undoing, of The Story of Edgar Sawtelle. An example of characters being driven to madness and destroying the fabric of a well crafted storyline and character array without regard for the already established personality profile of the characters.
I have faith that Audrey Neiffenegger will likely write more beautiful novels. This one I can't recommend without a lot of caveats.
Most recent customer reviews
I'm giving it 3 stars because I loved the language, the flow of words, the character development and I was enchanted at the start. Read morePublished 12 months ago by incurable_romantic
I really liked this book and am so disappointed that others did not. I think that if you go into it expecting it to be "The Time Traveller's Wife" then it would indeed get... Read morePublished 18 months ago by Erin
I kept trying to really like this book. It had potential for me to really like it. It wasn't as if I enjoyed her previous work, The Time Traveler's Wife, so I didn't have huge... Read morePublished 18 months ago by reluctantm
This is a very captivating story, from the author that gave us the Time Traveller's Wife. It takes place in the very near vicinity of Highgate Cemetery (London, UK) and within it. Read morePublished on July 6 2013 by Windy Feet
Elsbeth Noblin has not seen her twin Edie for twenty years. Letters have been exchanged, but without resolution of the family secret which has kept them apart. Read morePublished on Feb. 19 2013 by John M. Ford
After the huge success of "The Time Traveller's Wife" I had great hopes for this book. Unfortunately it seems to be a bit of a confused mess. Read morePublished on June 30 2012 by Neko
There was only one reason why I finished this book; I thought it was going to get better. After reading The Time Traveler's Wife, I assumed this was going to be GREAT! Read morePublished on June 15 2012 by cheche
This is a book that has disappointed numerous reviewers who expected a standard happy ending. I don't blame this on the author, but on the publisher and the misleading publicity... Read morePublished on March 17 2012 by Nancy Lorieau
This book was totally disappointing. It started out ok - but I kept waiting for the story to make any sense at all. It was just too "way out there" for me. Read morePublished on March 11 2012 by Gerrie