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Martin Sloane

3.56  ·  Rating Details  ·  381 Ratings  ·  42 Reviews
2001 in Canada First Novel Award Winner: When Toronto poet and playwright Michael Redhill published his first novel, Martin Sloane, he made headlines for the novel's long gestation through 12 complete drafts written over 10-plus years. In an age when many blockbuster novels read as though they never saw an editor's pencil, Redhill's stamina and his ruthless ...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published April 10th 2001 by Doubleday Canada (first published 2001)
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Jun 26, 2015 Krista rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: can-con, 2015
Some people believe in a connected world in which every one thing is cognate with every other thing, the bell tolling for you, for me. In this kind of world, orders are revealed within our own order, our beginnings woven with other beginnings, endings with endings. In this way, life is seen to rhyme with itself. For a long time this was my own religion.

Martin Sloane, simply put, is a perfect book; why did I resist reading it for so long? There's a mystery central to its plot, and coupled with
Kee Saitama
Nov 24, 2014 Kee Saitama rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the four books I purchased through a 'buy-one-take-one' bargain sale when I took a sabbatical leave from college to explore my options. My attention was caught by the reviews and summary at the back, as well as the eye-catching mysterious cover. Intrigued, I bought it and managed to finish it within the day. The thing about bargain books is you have no expectations whatsoever pertaining to the material you're about to read so I'm always careful with the stuff I buy from thrift sto ...more
Apr 17, 2016 Arah-Lynda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars actually
Vania Pagniello
Michael Redhill
Anchor Canada

Martin Sloane by Michael Redhill is a sad allusive, mystery novel that addresses truths central to the human condition. The novel takes place over a decade and tells the story of Jolene Iolas, an English student who falls in love with Martin Sloane, a middle-aged artist who creates detailed box constructs. Suddenly after years of dating, Martin vanishes from Jolene’s life without a trace. The narrative follows Jolene on her psychological odyssey as she tries to make
Ginger Hallett
Dec 21, 2013 Ginger Hallett rated it really liked it
This haunting story has left me a bit unsettled. I wanted to read it because I enjoyed reading three of Michael Redhill's later works, the detective series set in Ontario and featuring Hazel Micallef, which he wrote under the pseudonym Inger Ash Wolfe. He's a good storyteller.

There is a lot of story-telling in "Martin Sloane", tinged (and sometimes saturated) with melancholy, love and loss, but chock-full of detail and mystery at the same time. I found it to be quite a page-turner, irresistible
Tami Lynn Andrew
There is nothing worse than a decent plot that is ruined by an author who is convinced he/she needs to write a novel as opposed to a short story or novella.
There were entire chapters of this book that put me to sleep. They slowed the development of the plot and bored me to hell.
With the promise of a novel that "makes you lousy company for hours afterwards," I delved into Martin Sloane expecting a piece that I would turn around in my head for hours afterwards. I wasn't disappointed.

The writings that stay with me the longest are those that depict the subtle, almost disregarded moments of humanity - of this, Michael Redhill excels.

There were times when I felt that the novel was choppy and a little too coy. I had to go back to re-read several pages of written recollections
Jun 10, 2011 1.1 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As reserved, quiet, and arty as its cover (its various skin) indicates - but by no means a lifeless novel. Wickedly interconnected by symbolism and remembrance and even the rough spots have something to tell the reader. As Noah Richler's blurb on the back indicates: the book may haunt your thoughts for a while, because it contains depths worth analyzing.

On the other hand, despite very effective writing I found myself constantly confused about what time of day or night the narratives took place
Enid Wray
Aug 01, 2016 Enid Wray rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful - poetic (big surprise) - meditation on love and loss, family and friendship, and the vagaries of memory. Do we ever really know anyone? The question is, and isn't, answered by the end of the novel.
(And the homage to Muskoka didn't just come once writing as Inger Ash Wolfe... witness the campus gallery curator Mrs. Vankoughnet in the very early pages).
Dec 27, 2012 Diana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-books
What to say about Martin Sloane ?

This is a compelling, well-written story that holds up quite well until the end. Then, at the end of the experience you realize that it is deeply pessimistic about human nature, especially based on motives that are murky at best. And, to make things even more suspect, Mr. Redhill deary does not understand women at all. As reader, I can accept a dysfunctional female character or relationship, but all of them? Seriously?

Mr. Redhill does have a gift for prose and
Nov 01, 2015 Tifany rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my favourite books. The echoes of James Joyce are everywhere and incredible. The characters are well realized and complex. Even the supporting characters are intriguing.
Lovely read.
May 27, 2016 Kay rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well written, sometimes gripping. I enjoyed it without loving it. Good insights into the effects of childhood and life's events generally on each one of us.
Nov 27, 2013 Timothy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Love is not a home, it is not safe love other people, our faith in love is misplaced." A great and accurate quote, but as the protagonist says "but I have to put my love into someone." The story revolves around the life of a young college girl who falls in the love with a much older artist -- whose work she adores. Alas, midway through the novel her life is shattered in a moment and she spends the remainder of the book looking for answers about love and life. Set in Toronto, the Finger Lakes of ...more
It is about Jolene and Molly and their relationship as friends and how they compare their relationship with other men. The story follows Jolene and Martin through the inception of their friendship and then on to relationship. While showing glimpses into Martin's childhood and his experiences.

However, one night he disappears for no reason, Jolene is left to pick up the pieces of her life. All the while, the author gives descriptions of his art work and how is relates to Martin's moments in life.
Liz Smith
Apr 07, 2014 Liz Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
drawn in and left wondering. excellent read
VS Drakkan
Jul 09, 2013 VS Drakkan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A former teacher of mine for a creative writing class is the author of this. The journey of the narrator is much more important than the plot. You find yourself wanting to know more about her. . .

What I enjoyed most is how he told the story in first person from a female narrators perspective, and I think this is what ultimately inspired me to take the same road when crafting my debut tale.

Being a male it's kind of difficult to do that at times, but as writers it's necessary to dive into both asp
Much of the action in this book revolves around a mystery, but I wouldn't recommend reading with the goal of solving the mystery. I enjoyed reflecting on the relationships between the characters, their fears, hurts, motivations. It would be interesting to hear from the author how he conceptualized the art pieces that are described at the opening of each chapter.
daniel smith
Aug 01, 2007 daniel smith rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: cynical lovers
A tuna salad sandwhich on dry rye. One of those books that jumps all over the place before telling you what's going on. Not really in a suspenceful way since nothing really drastic ever happens. The cover does a good job in describing the book. It supplies a mood, not an answer. Not a very pleasant mood, but it's effective in what it does.
G. Marie

Some guidance is lost in the book's structure, which visits the present, his past and her past throughout. Books that hold a reader's hand on the road from preface to postscript bore me to tears ("The Help"), but I would have appreciated more visible signposts in "Martin Sloan," if not a finger to grasp now and then.
This is one of those books that just makes you keep thinking. About art and literature and their intersection. I learned about Joseph Cornell. I pondered James Joyce. Everything that I think is awesome BASICALLY all comes together in this one little book. Everyone who loves literature and art should read this. It is fantastic.
Jul 20, 2009 Susan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although I was left hanging by the ending I loved Redhill's writing so much that I wanted to keep on reading and reading. He really has a great way with words and the boxes Martin builds are fascinating; both in their description and in their meaning. I highly recommend this book.
Rovi Yuno
The beauty of art was shown in this book. I love how Martin made his boxes. The details, the figures, the colors seemed to be so real. The undying love of Jolene towards the other character was indeed, remarkable. I just didn't like how slow the story went but still, it's a good read.
Feb 01, 2010 Laura rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I think I just didn't really get this book. It just didn't do it for me I couldn't picture the artwork the author described and I didn't understand or feel that I got to know or really care about any of the characters. It just was not a book I could relate to in any way.
I read this for a book club I had just joined - we were reading only Canadiana at this point. It was an interesting introduction and an interesting book. We were so perplexed by the story, we named our club the "Where is Martin Sloane?" Book Club. :)
This book made me think of my dead mother and lovers who disappeared from my life. It struggles with finding resolution where there are no longer resolutions to find. Although this is a very interesting story and a good book, it made me feel very sad.
Nov 29, 2008 Pamk rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very different book about a woman coping with a man unexpectedly leaving her and also losing a friendship. Written by a poet and it shows in some of the beautiful imagery. Definitely a book about emotions - not much action.
Jan 17, 2010 Bachyboy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful book written from the point of view of Jolene who falls for a much older man, an artist. One night he just walks out and the rest of the book deals wit that mystery. I really like this book.
Sep 25, 2010 Sheila rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well written and wonderful descriptions of abstract art, but not quite sure what the author was getting at. I couldn't make up my mind if this was a novel about betrayal, being lonely or the Irish mentality.
Jun 22, 2008 Betsy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed reading this book and thought it was beautifully written. But, I got the feeling I was supposed to glean some kind of meaning from the book - I don't think I "got" it.
Jun 29, 2009 Wendy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's not often that I really enjoy two books by the same author. I liked this book even better than Consolation. I read it cover to cover two times in a row. Beautiful.
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Aka Inger Ash Wolfe.

Michael Redhill is an American-born Canadian poet, playwright and novelist.

Born in Baltimore, Maryland, Redhill was raised in the metropolitan Toronto, Ontario area. He pursued one year of study at Indiana University, and then returned to Canada, completing his education at York University and the University of Toronto. He was on the editorial board of Coach House Press from 19
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