Get a Life
Paul Bannerman, an ecologist in South Africa, believes he understands the trajectory of his life, with the usual markers of vocation and marriage. But when he's diagnosed with thyroid cancer and, after surgery, prescribed treatment that will leave him radioactive, for a period a danger to others, h ...more
I found the book's depiction of thyroid cancer over-dramatic. The main character is in his thirties and has papillary thyroid cancer. His chances of dying are slim - yet the book repeat ...more
Success sometimes may be defined as a disaster put on hold – Nadine Gorminder, Get a Life
I thought the idea behind this novel was an intriguing one: after undergoing treatment for thyroid cancer a man—Paul Bannerman—needs to be quarantined from his family for sixteen days because he’s literally radioactive. His parents agree to care for him, not that they’re immune but they’re not young and that’s what parents do; both are in their mid-sixties. So, at the age of thirty-five Paul’s reduced to bei ...more
I found the writing style a little like wadin ...more
Because the author is famous, the publisher can use real big type and make a 170 page book out of a handful of stories. Fine.
Gordimer lets me see something of life today in the 'new' South Africa through the eyes of a variety of individuals, I was going to say 'ordinary', but they are all too highly educated to use that word...
Anyway, it is good that Gordimer does not shy away from race issues as expressed on the individual level. Good for us, I mean, to educate us, to help us to 'see'.
I fe ...more
I can't really call this a review - as due to the nature of the book, I found myself deeply lacking interest in it whatsoever around 40-50 pages in, and had to give up. It's sad as I'm a great fan of Gordimer's short stories - the ones included in Jump and Other Stories really enthralled me. I turned to Get A Life in the hope of getting to a flavour of what those skills applied to a novel might read like.
From the blurb the plot is contemporary, enga ...more
"A state of existence. Unimaginable. Because her son, belonging to the historical continuity, brings a state of existence, his, before her days and nights, there returns a chapter not written, included, that surely cannot be believed was possible, could never happen to her as ...more
The first 60+ pages I found extremely difficult to read and I entertained the thought of abandoning the book. However, other reviewers said it gets easier after that section and it does. Still, I continued for the sake of finishing the book, out of a sense of 'obligation' so to speak, not because I enjoyed it.
The story open ...more
Her style asked me to pay attention, (no multi tasking with this book) and to proceed slowly. I went back over passages and blew dust from my dictionary once or twice. This is not my usual practice and in many instances it would have chaffed. I'm pleased to have made the effort, thanks in no small part to this b ...more
Erken yaşında kanser olan ekoloji uzmanı Paul Bannermann’ın yaşamından bir kesiti anlatıyor. Kanser tedavisi nedeniyle bedeninin radyoaktif ışınlar yaydığı için oğlu Nickie ve reklamcı olan eşi Berenice/Benni’den ayrılıp başarılı bir avukat olan ...more
Gordimer, a 1991 Nobel laureate, has historically mined apartheid's personal, social, and psychological landscape and explored the intersection of public and private spheres. Get a Life, her 14th novel, similarly takes place against larger social and political transitions. But here, to many critics' chagrin, her work is less politically intense than usual, her characters embodiments of ideas rather than flesh-and-blood people. Reviewers praised Gordimer's depiction of the renewed parent/child re...more
Unfortunately, despite the interesting premise (a young man is diagnosed with thyroid cancer and has to confront his mortality while returning to the family home to be taken care of by his aging parents), the delivery falls flat. I assume the author chose the choppy style and the disjointed, halting sentences to convey the frame of mind of the mai ...more
the writing style was extremely difficult for me to get. i found myself reading and rereading passages sometimes three times in a row just to understand what the author was trying to say. i found myself left behind by many of the environmental passages, and never really felt close to or much care for any of the characters.
i don't really have much more to say about it. i am ...more
My husband got me this book when I was facing surgery for thyroid cancer. He thought, since I like reading, I might enjoy a novel about someone in the same predicament. I'm glad I waited to read this book, though. As another reviewer pointed out, Gordimer handles the topics of thyroid cancer and radioactive iodine rather dramatically in this novel. Her style is also highly literary. So while the book has its merits, I wouldn't n ...more
However, although the story line has some nice twists I was kind of disappointed about the end of the story that happens to be a dead end t ...more
Gordimer's writing dealt with moral and racial issues, particularly apartheid in South Africa. Under that regime, works such as Burger' ...more