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Run Hardcover – Deckle Edge, Sep 25 2007

4.3 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Harper; 1 edition (Sept. 25 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061340634
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061340635
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 2.8 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 703 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #492,021 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

SignatureReviewed by Andrew O'HaganNovelists can no longer take it as an insult when people say their novels are like good television, because the finest American television is better written than most novels. Ann Patchett's new one has the texture, the pace and the fairy tale elegance of a half dozen novels she might have read and loved growing up, but the magic and the finesse of Run is really much closer to that of Six Feet Under or ER or The Sopranos, and that is good news for everybody, not least her readers.Bernadette and Bernard Doyle were a Boston couple who wanted to have a big lively family. They had one boy, Sullivan, and then adopted two black kids, Teddy and Tip. Mr. Doyle is a former mayor of Boston and he continues his interest in politics, hoping his boys will shape up one day for elected office, though none of them seems especially keen. Bernadette dies when the adopted kids are just four, and much of the book offers a placid requiem to her memory in particular and to the force of motherhood in lives generally. An old statue from Bernadette's side of the family seems to convey miracles, and there will be more than one before this gracious book is done. One night, during a heavy snowfall, Teddy and Tip accompany their father to a lecture given by Jessie Jackson at the Kennedy Centre. Tip is preoccupied with studying fish, so he feels more than a little coerced by his father. After the lecture they get into an argument and Tip walks backwards in the road. A car appears out of nowhere and so does a woman called Tennessee, who pushes Tip out of the car's path and is herself struck. Thus, a woman is taken to hospital and her daughter, Kenya, is left in the company of the Doyles. Relationships begin both to emerge and unravel, disclosing secrets, hopes, fears. Run is a novel with timeless concerns at its heart—class and belonging, parenthood and love—and if it wears that heart on its sleeve, then it does so with confidence. And so it should: the book is lovely to read and is satisfyingly bold in its attempt to say something patient and true about family. Patchett knows how to wear big human concerns very lightly, and that is a continuing bonus for those who found a great deal to admire in her previous work, especially the ultra-lauded Bel Canto. Yet one should not mistake that lightness for anything cosmetic: Run is a book that sets out inventively to contend with the temper of our times, and by the end we feel we really know the Doyle family in all its intensity and with all its surprises.Andrew O'Hagan's novel Be Near Me has just been published by Harcourt.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* The question of what makes a family is central to this luminous novel, Patchett's first since her award-winning Bel Canto (2001). Boston lawyer and ex-politician Bernard Doyle has nurtured his three sons—Sullivan, 33, and African American Tip, 21, and Teddy, 20, brothers adopted 20 years earlier—since the death of his beloved wife, Bernadette, some 15 years ago. Then, one snowy evening, Tip, inattentive and annoyed at his father, is pushed out of the way of an oncoming vehicle by a woman, herself hit and badly injured, who turns out to be the boys' birth mother and who's been watching the boys for years, along with her 11-year-old daughter, Kenya. The drama of a single day is given an unreal quality by the snow that curtails normal activity, as these vividly portrayed characters struggle with their circumstances: Sullivan, the prodigal whose mistake his father lied about; smart Tip; sweet Teddy; speedy runner Kenya; and her mother, Tennessee, whose dreamlike sequence in her hospital room reveals another twist in the family muddle. In extraordinarily fluid prose, Patchett unfolds this story to its epiloguelike final chapter as she illuminates issues of race, religion, duty, and desire. Leber, Michele

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I felt this to be a long read, and about 3/4 of the way through, I found myself looking forward to it being over, so I could move on to something more captivating.

It is a nice story, but Patchett never really develops any one single character more than the others, and so I did not grow attached to any of them. I felt like I was reading a long recap of a series of too-coincidental events, without really feeling that I could live the story and feel the emotions.
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By K. Bell on April 29 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I thought the character development was quite good and that this was a nice enough story. I loved the old priest, especially his loss of faith in the ever after and awakening to the beauty that God gives us here and now. There were some tempting starts to a deeper storyline or theme (the statue, the theme of running, the family), but these never seemed to be developed into anything. I kept waiting for the punch line. The political theme that the author mentions in the Q&A completely passed me by. Ok for a light read but didn't really give me the hit I was expecting.
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Format: Paperback
A tender, lovely book, about Bernard & Bernardette Doyle who, after the birth of their son Sullivan are unable to have more children and decide to adopt. Teddy, an African-American infant is therefore welcomed into their family with open arms and soon after his older brother Tip joins the family too, much to their delight. Everything seems to be perfect until Bernardette dies prematurely.

Bernard finds himself to raise the three boys alone. He is very protective and has plans for them, however between his politically-oriented job and raising the family by himself, as the kids grow up some strain starts to develop between them. Sullivan, much older than Tip & Teddy, moves out very quickly and resurfaces only every now & then.

One snowy night, a stranger passing by with her daughter saves Tip from an accident, but she ends up badly injured. The Doyle's lives shall change forever after the accident.

My first book by Ann Patchett but I shall read more. The prose flows beautifully, despite the intricate backs & forths from past to present, from character to character. This shifting however is uncomplicated and it adds an interesting touch to the narrative style.
I gave it 4 stars (instead of 5) only because, despite my liking it a lot, I found some situations a bit far-fetched, and some of the characters with a goody-goody quality that I found a bit unreal given the circumstances.
All in all however, I would say that this book is quite a page-turner and I would certainly recommend it.
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Format: Paperback
The story is about the Doyle family of Boston - former mayor Bernard and his wife had one biological son and adopted two black sons named Tip and Teddy before her untimely death. Now, twenty years later, the eldest boy is an aimless disappointment while the younger sons are successful college students with very different personalities. On a fateful night, Tip is nearly run over by a car but is pushed to safety by a stranger who will come to impact their lives forever.

The first chapter told an interesting history of a beautiful religious statue that had been in the family for generations. The rest of the book, however, was completely different in tone. Almost all of it is about the night of the Tip's brush with death, told in such excruciating detail that it was hard for me to stick with the book. There is very little action and most dialog is followed by one or more paragraphs in which the speaker mulls over his words ad nauseum. This writing style got old fast for me. I grew impatient for something to happen and tried to skim the book, only to find that important details were tucked into the most boring private reflections.

The basic plot is a good one and would have been very successful as a short story, but for me, the novel is way too draw-out and dull.
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By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWER on Oct. 5 2007
Format: Paperback
Run is one of the most satisfying family novels I've read in some time. I was very impressed by the many ways that Ann Patchett gently portrayed love among family members within a smooth, comfortable story-telling flow. At another level, the book provides a subtle allegory for the ways that God's love is portrayed in the New Testament. The writing shines with a caring outlook for everyone that provided me with much joy, even among the sadness that will be any reader's natural reaction to parts of the book.

What is a family? Most people define that as a mother and father and some kids. Those from cultures where extended families are more important will include grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. Ann Patchett clearly feels that wherever the family feeling is present there is a family. The book will give you much room for thought on that point.

Bernard Doyle and his sons aren't typical in some ways of most nuclear families, but in other ways they are. Sullivan is Bernard's oldest son, the surviving memory of his great love for his deceased wife, Bernadette. Wanting a larger family than God gave them biologically, Bernard and Bernadette sought to adopt. Because they didn't specify sex or race, a beautiful African-American baby boy, Teddy, joined the family. In an unexpected surprise, Teddy's mother asked if the Doyles would like to also adopt Teddy's brother, Tip. They did and the family was blessed with one more son.

Bernard had three loves, his political career in Boston (which led him to become mayor), his wife, and his boys. But due to Bernadette's death, his loves fell to two areas . . . and then to one as his political career evaporated. But he still wanted political success for his sons, much like Joe Kennedy once plotted for Joe Jr.
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