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No Other life

3.78  ·  Rating Details ·  121 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
When Father Paul Michel, missionary on the desperately poor Caribbean island of Ganae, rescues Jeannot from abject poverty, he has little idea of the perilous events the future holds.
Paperback, 216 pages
Published February 7th 1994 by Flamingo (first published April 27th 1993)
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Frank Kelly
Aug 23, 2007 Frank Kelly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Christians, recovering and otherwise
Brian Moore is the latter 20th century's Graham Greene, a novelist consistently concerned with Matters of Faith. Like Greene, these spiritual/religious concerns are imbedded in tightly plotted, suspenseful stories. What I learned from this book is that there are saints today, that the virtue they supposedly embody can create tragedies as well as miracles, that the United States' view of What Needs To Be Done in Latin American is criminally naive. This was a bracing read.
Barbara Sibbald
Jan 05, 2014 Barbara Sibbald rated it it was ok
I adore the early writing of Moore: "The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne," "I am Mary Dunn," "The Luck of Ginger Coffey." These are brilliant, brilliant books.
"No Other Life" is not in the same league, mostly, I think, because we don't know the characters with the same depth.
Father Paul, the narrator of this tale set in thinly veiled Haiti, is mostly an enigma. Why is he in the priesthood? Why does he lack the courage to make the most of it? Why is he obsessed by Jeannot? As for Jeannot: For s
...more
Derek Bridge
Aug 12, 2011 Derek Bridge rated it it was amazing
In a key scene, Father Paul Michel's mother, devout throughout her life, but on her death-bed in Quebec, tells her son that she has lost her faith: there is no other life.

Back on the Caribbean island of Ganae, Jeannot, whom Father Michel has raised from poverty to the priesthood, seems more concerned too with people's worldly suffering than their eternal souls, bringing him into conflict with state and Church, although even he is willing to sacrifice the lives of the poor to the cause of his rev
...more
Andrew
Dec 18, 2010 Andrew rated it liked it
Shelves: brian-moore
Tightly written to capture the dubious sanity of the establishment in an unstable third world country.

Clearly inspired by the early story of Jean-Bertrand Aristide in Haiti, which has rolled on quite a bit since Moore's book was published in 1993. For example, Aristide left the priesthood in 1994.

This is certainly a well paced and thought-provoking novel, reflecting the immovable unfairness of life in a poverty-stricken dictatorship.

As always with Moore's writing style, the text is terse but cl
...more
Silvio Curtis
May 22, 2010 Silvio Curtis rated it really liked it
I would have liked a more detailed setting, and the writing is mostly so-so, but it was probably worth reading for the story. It takes place in a country, Ganae, that is fictional but modelled on Haiti. The narrator is a Catholic priest from Canada (the nationality of the author). He finds a sense of purpose only by participating in the vision of a man who, taken by the priest takes him out of an environment of extreme poverty as a boy and given an education, becomes both a priest and a revoluti ...more
zenbren
Aug 27, 2013 zenbren rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013
A thoughtful novel which reminded me that Moore is a powerful and diverse writer who leaves wanting to read more of his impressive body of work.Set in a fictitious Carribean island Ganae ,which for me bore echoes of Haiti 's history,the plot centres on the life of a revolutionary young priest Jeannot and his Canadian mentor Fr Michel. My only frustration with the book is the fact that neither character is ever fully formed. Is Jeanot a visionary,a revolutionary,a misguided religionists or an ego ...more
Alan
Jun 18, 2014 Alan rated it really liked it
Shelves: novels
from my 2002 notebook: complex, thriller like, good writing that goes at a clip.
Karen
Aug 21, 2016 Karen rated it liked it
This is the first of Brian Moore's books that I've read and I look forward to picking up another. This was a bit of a tough go at first, but I soon got into it. If you've lived abroad and wondered at how corruption seems to infect even the purest souls, this book helps to explain how one goes from crusader to corrupted very easily.
Mark Owens
Nov 03, 2012 Mark Owens rated it really liked it
Fantastic. You hear about these places where dictators rule and the citizenry rise us and it's bloody and the leaders wear dark sunglasses and decorative uniforms, and this book brings it to life with finesse and blunt force. Well done!
Mary Alice
Jul 17, 2012 Mary Alice rated it it was amazing
Reminiscent of Graham Greene. Tale of a Caribbean dictatorships and two Catholic priests, one of whom becomes governor in an attempt to bring democracy to the state. Very, very sad.
R.J.
Mar 28, 2008 R.J. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: recommend
Moore's fictional exploration of the rise of Jean-Betrand Aristide. Well composed, insightful but in the end Aristide went a different route than the hero of this novel.
Moi-rrrrra
Oct 06, 2010 Moi-rrrrra rated it it was amazing
This book is a really quick read but incredible. The ending is just perfect. I think Brian Moore is secretly (or not?) an anarchist.
James
Nov 16, 2011 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read Long Wharf when it first came out. Fascinated to look at Haiti in the news at the time. Felt he had a real take on Aristide.
Sue Gannon
May 10, 2011 Sue Gannon rated it it was ok
Not his best - doesn't measure up to The Black Robe and some of his others
Ellen O'brien
Style: easy to read.
Content: weighty and thought provoking.
Rebecca
Apr 04, 2013 Rebecca rated it did not like it
I can't see how this book is rated so highly. I found it dull.
Johanna
Oct 28, 2013 Johanna rated it really liked it
Loved it. So rich.
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45897
Brian Moore (1921–1999) was born into a large, devoutly Catholic family in Belfast, Northern Ireland. His father was a surgeon and lecturer, and his mother had been a nurse. Moore left Ireland during World War II and in 1948 moved to Canada, where he worked for the Montreal Gazette, married his first wife, and began to write potboilers under various pen names, as he would continue to do throughout ...more
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