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Berlin Poplars (Neshov Family #1)

3.76  ·  Rating Details ·  1,594 Ratings  ·  108 Reviews
Just before Christmas on a farm in Northern Norway, 80-year-old Anna Neshov, matriarch of a troubled family, is taken gravely ill. Her three sons have been quietly immersed in their work: one an undertaker, one a window-dresser, and the eldest running the family farm, but now they are forced to reunite for the first time in many years. Their personalities are as disparate ...more
Paperback, 304 pages
Published April 1st 2008 by Random House UK (first published 2004)
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Declan
Jan 08, 2012 Declan rated it it was amazing
It's possible that this book does not deserve five stars, but I'm giving it the maximum amount anyway because it's a book that means a lot to me. This was the first book I read after being unable to read any book for a full year because of my total inability to concentrate; a result of the turmoil in my life at that time (c. 3 years ago). The book brings together the members of a fractured family and allows them to reach a point where they can see each other as vulnerable, feeling, confused ...more
Bettie☯
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mike
Sep 11, 2008 Mike added it
Slow, slow, slow. Depressing. Kinda what you'd expect from Skandanavia in winter somehow.
Roxana Cora
Oct 10, 2016 Roxana Cora rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
La inceput, cartea s-a lasat greu acceptata. Am incercat sa o citesc acum jumatate de an si am lasat-o balta. nu intelegeam ce rost au cele 3 povestiri, parca deslanate. In momentul in care o doamna draga mie m-a sfatuit sa citesc volumul 2, am fost sigura ca citisem vol I si ca mi-a placut... asa ca volens nolens m-am apucat de Plopii din Berlin... si a ajuns sa imi placa atat de mult, incat asteptam cu nerabdare sa se termine orele de serviciu ca sa alerg la metrou sa incep sa continui citirea ...more
Antonomasia
[4.5] This Norwegian novel set at Christmas perhaps isn't desperately original, but if I enjoy an example of one of my most-hated genres - the family saga, and one with such a twee cover - this much, it must be doing plenty right. It's cosy, sometimes funny, and just the right amount of dark. (For me at least, often finding standard ideas of cosy to be cloying.) In an initial scenario reminiscent of The Corrections, adult children of a dispersed, dysfunctional family gather, prompted by the illn ...more
Cărți și călătorii
Dacă, la fel ca mine, văzând acest titlu, v-ați pregătit pentru o poveste care se petrece în Berlin, atunci înseamnă că, la fel ca mine, ați fost păcăliți de autoare. Acțiunea romanului ne poartă prin Norvegia și Danemarca, iar Berlinul cu plopii lui este menționat doar în trecere, ca o cheie a trecutului ce se lasă cu greu descifrat.

Subiectul poate părea un pic macabru, la început, dat fiind că primele pagini descriu sinuciderea unui băiat și ne fac cunoștință cu unul dintre personajele central
...more
Marte Patel
Jan 07, 2010 Marte Patel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, norwegian
This was a great book, the best I've read in a while. I even cried at one point in the middle, and books very rarely make me cry. I can't wait to read the next book in the trilogy! The books have been translated into English - this one is called Berlin Poplars. I'd really recommend it!
puck
Jan 02, 2016 puck rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Eu ma bucur ca nu am aruncat cartea asta pe geam dupa primele capitole, unde are niste faze foarte greu de digerat, pentru ca la final declar ca mi-a placut cu adevarat. Doar e o poveste despre o familie disfunctionala, cum sa nu ma intereseze! Astept celelalte volume.
Andrei Cioată
3 steluțe, chiar 2.5, asta doar pentru că mi-au plăcut fragmentele scrise italic. Și-atât!
Sylva
Sep 23, 2011 Sylva rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: other-fiction, norsk
První díl trilogie o navenek tradiční rodině ze severonorského venkova: čtivý a civilní (těch pár kýčovitých tahů nevadí), aktuální i s přesahem do minulosti, napínavý i rozvláčný, pravdivý a s pointou, která mi vyrazila dech. Autorka dobře vystihuje kontrast města a venkova, individuální svobody a nekonečné poslušnosti vůči rodiči, upřímnosti a až zrůdné přetvářky. Škoda jen, že jsem knížku dočetla dřív, než vyjde druhý díl.
Karen
Dec 28, 2012 Karen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A gift from a dear Norwegian friend, this was the perfect holiday read: snow, Christmas, dysfunctional family, history -- the works. I devoured it in one day.
Tina
Oct 14, 2016 Tina rated it liked it
Shelves: drama
Ho letto questo libro in francese e il titolo è "La terre des mensonges": mi aspettavo quindi intrighi e misteri, invece fino a più della metà ha avuto il solo effetto, con la descrizione della vita in fattoria, e meglio, in un porcile, di farmi diventare vegetariana (o quasi)...
Tutto sommato è scritto in maniera scorrevole e poi arriva persino l'intrigo, svelato sul finale.

*****

I've read this book in French with the title "La terre des mensonges-the land of lies": so I expected mystery and dra
...more
Pablos
May 06, 2015 Pablos rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
Pierwsza część “Ziemi kłamstw” powoduje totalny zachwyt. Przedstawienie trojga braci, z których każdy jest zupełnie inną osobowością, a w tle ich codzienności wyraźnie widać czające się dramaty i tajemnice jest urzekające, od lektury nie sposób się oderwać, obojętnie czy aktualnie poznajemy Margido, Erlanda, Tora czy może Torunn. To kapitalne postaci, przedstawione z prawdziwym polotem; Autorka z każdym kolejnym rozdziałem zmienia się zupełnie, tak ukazując dni powszednie bohaterów, że ...more
Ema
Apr 28, 2015 Ema rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ema by: Declan
Plopii din Berlin este un roman care curge ușor, cu o scriitură simplă și lipsită de înflorituri (până și descrierile naturii din nordul Norvegiei sunt ușoare și discrete precum o adiere plăcută de vânt), dar cu o atentă aplecare spre studiul caracterelor umane și al relațiilor dintre oameni - cu precădere, cele dintre membrii unei familii.

Primele capitole reiau aceleași zile dinaintea Crăciunului din patru puncte de vedere diferite - durează un pic, așadar, până ne familiarizăm cu cele patru p
...more
annik
«Тополь берлинский» хорош с точки зрения описательности и способности автора вгрызаться в самую суть суровых северян, но в остальном книга тянулась бесконечной чередой беспросветностей, что порядком замедлило процесс чтения и даже утомило. Книга Рагде не шла даже по трезвости, и виной тому, как ни странно, не свинарник, в котором происходит пятая часть действия и сопутствующие ему запахи. Виновата сама история, сами люди, несчастные, одинокие и потерянные. Если в начале мне хотелось обнять этих ...more
Margarida
Foi a minha estreia na literatura nórdica, neste caso norueguesa. A única hipótese era ler a tradução em Inglês ou Francês, já que esta autora não está (que me tenha dado conta) traduzida em Português. Como já tinha os 3 e-books da trilogia em Francês, ingressei na leitura.

A história ao início não parece prometer muito. Temos uma família de camponeses numa cidade norueguesa. Um casal de 80 anos que teve 3 filhos, que não podiam ser mais diferentes uns dos outros (pela ordem como nos são apresent
...more
Anne
Sep 22, 2007 Anne rated it really liked it
Overraskende bra!
Jeg ble overrasket fordi anmeldere og kulturpersonligheter av stor og liten tapning har gjort så mye av seg i media og vært så utrolig negative.

Dette er ingen dårlig eller halvdårlig bok, selv om enkelte kritikere (kritiker i vid forstand) gjerne vil at den skal være det.
Jeanette Sky i Morgenbladet hengte seg opp i en av hovedpersonenes samling av glassfigurer, og spesielt i at han har en enhjørning og at denne knuses. Glassmenasjeriet av Tennessee Williams er jo bare så mye bed
...more
Wynn
Jul 05, 2016 Wynn rated it did not like it
It took me nearly two months to finish this utterly mundane book. Two months! I have never taken that long of a stretch to complete a book under 400 pages. Ever.

Obviously I severely dislike (if not detest) Anne B. Ragde's Berlin Poplars. My opinion has nothing to do with the plot / or general subject matter per se; the delivery of the novel's contents is where the issues lie. Jumping right into the meat and potatoes, I have yet to read anything as deflated or bereft as this story. The character
...more
Eka Maka
Sep 20, 2014 Eka Maka rated it it was amazing
Ну конечно Кесарю кесарево... А мне книга понравилась, слог (спасибо переводчикам), сюжет, атмосфера. Меня все это увлекло, книгу прочитала за один вечер. Депрессняк меня не посетил, скорее меня накроет от "Элегантности ежика", вот уж точно тягомотина. Нет ну правда, книга очень интересная. Прочтя ее я немного оторвалась от груди русской литературы и отложила в сторону русский менталитет и душу "загадку". Поэтому тут не рецензия, а реверансы автору и немного положительных эмоций. В общем - ...more
Esme
Mar 15, 2011 Esme rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
Die Trilogie um die Familie Neshov ("Lügenhaus" – "Einsiedlerkrebse" – "Hitzewelle") gehört zu den großartigsten und berührendsten Büchern, die ich gelesen habe.

Und es passiert gar nicht viel. Denn wer hätte gedacht, dass das Leben eines Schweinezüchters, eines Bestattungsunternehmers und eines homosexuellen Schaufensterdekorateurs aufregend ist? Eben.

So viel Leid, ungelebtes Leben, Traurigkeit und Ungesagtes. Warmherzig, humorvoll und zärtlich schreibt Anne B. Ragde über die Familie, ihre Nöte,
...more
GrangerDanger
Jan 31, 2015 GrangerDanger rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
This book almost ended up on the "unfinished-because-ugh" shelve. It didn't, for the sole reason that my mom got it for me and I wanted to see what she liked about it.

This book also almost got 4 stars, because the ending tricked me into thinking I liked it. The ending, aka the last 10 pages at most, was good. The rest was kind of a drag, especially the first half of the book. 2 of the 4 characters BORE ME TO SLEEP. I do not give a flying fuck about pigs and how to take care of them. I understand
...more
Kine Torstensen
Very slow, but not in a bad way. It is a book focused on character development and Anne B. Ragde does such a good job at creating unique characters. There wasn't any of the five character's point of view I didn't enjoy reading. They all had their own, very different story. I got to know every one of them, and it was like I was there "celebrating" Christmas with them. It is a book about family and grief. I also felt a lot of warmth - probably a weird description, but like I was at home in a way.
Iulia Bercescu
Oct 07, 2015 Iulia Bercescu rated it liked it
Shelves: norway
There are many things I enjoyed about this book, but overall I think I found it a bit too conventional and predictable (I kinda guessed the dark family secret long before it was exposed, not that it mattered). Good writing, fairly good pace, characters richly crafted. I liked it, but I can't say I fell in love with anything about it. It just wasn't spectacular.
Nova
Nov 13, 2010 Nova rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Eighty year old Anna is rushed to hospital after suffering a stroke. Her 3 sons have not spoken in some time and are leading very different lives. However the trio reluctantly reunite at the family farm over Christmas and so the scene is set for the discussion of inheritance and the revelation of some bizarre and devastating truths. Very interesting family dynamics makes for a good read.
Melania
Sep 01, 2016 Melania rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
PLOPII DIN BERLIN - Anne Birkefeldt Ragde

Plopii din Berlin este un roman care curge ușor, cu o scriitură simplă și lipsită de înflorituri (până și descrierile naturii din nordul Norvegiei sunt ușoare și discrete precum o adiere plăcută de vânt), dar cu o atentă aplecare spre studiul caracterelor umane și al relațiilor dintre oameni - cu precădere, cele dintre membrii unei familii. Primele capitole reiau aceleași zile dinaintea Crăciunului din patru puncte de vedere diferite - durează un pic, aș
...more
Paulrus
Nov 07, 2016 Paulrus rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katia
Feb 23, 2013 Katia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Le roman s'ouvre in medias res sur le suicide de Yngve, un petit garçon. Ses parents appellent alors Margido Neshov qui a une entreprise de pompe funèbres. On découvre donc cet homme et un peu les parents Kotum. Ce qui m'a troublé c'est que la suite nous fait découvrir Erlend, un concepteur de vitrines. Difficile de comprendre comment tout cela va s'emboîter pour faire avancer l'histoire, la première partie nous fait découvrir des personnages différents et en conséquence je n'ai pas compris tout ...more
buchtrunken
Der Klappentext und reviews hier auf goodreads haben mich zu diesem Buch verführt.
Dass es sich um eine Familiensage handelt, war mir von Anfang an klar und auch, dass Familiensagen eher selten mit fingernägel-knabbernder Spannung aufwarten. Dennoch hatte ich mir ein wenig mehr versprochen.
Der verachtete Vater, der - wie es auf dem klappentext und in der Buchbeschreibung auf Seite 3 heißt - endlich reinen Tisch machen will und nach dem Tod der Mutter seinen erwachsenen und mehr als unterschiedlic
...more
Stein Erik
Sep 28, 2014 Stein Erik rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Berliner Poplene er en spennende bok. Man leser om en familie som samles etter moren til Tor, Margido og Erlend ligger for døden. Familien man følger heter Neshov. Og Tor som er den eldste driver gården til familien. Man blir også kjent med Torunn som er datteren til Tor.

Hun blir bokstaveligtalt dratt inn i situasjonen, hvor hun møter familiemedlemmer for første gang etter 37 år. Torunn kommer fra Oslo og har ingen erfaring fra å jobbe på gård. Men hun er utdannet veterinær og driver dressurkur
...more
Tania
Nov 10, 2008 Tania rated it liked it
quotes#675167 Berlin Poplars

He worked with a kind of warm and extended happiness within him. A happiness that occasionally made him catch his breath and pumped small jabs of adrenalin into his diaphragm. p40
[cliche but still good to remember]

The doctor had given the mother a sedative; the father didn't want one. It was a classic case; men tried to manage without, keep their heads clear, not break down or lose control. Instead, he paced the kitchen floor with his hands behind his back. Margido di
...more
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Norwegian author Anne B. Ragde (b 1957) made her literary debut in 1986 with the children’s book HALLO! HER ER JO! Since then, she has written several books for children and young adults, among them a biography about Sigrid Undset, for which she was awarded the Brage Prize. Her first novel for adults, EN TIGER FOR EN ENGEL was published in 1990. She has since written several novels, crime novels ...more
More about Anne B. Ragde...

Other Books in the Series

Neshov Family (4 books)
  • Eremittkrepsene
  • Ligge i grønne enger (Familien Neshov, #3)
  • Alltid tilgivelse

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