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2.7 of 5 stars 2.70  ·  rating details  ·  82 ratings  ·  15 reviews
A sensual and Gothic tale of obsession and sexual awakening, Sabine is a tasty literary treat by an anonymous author that features old money and older secrets, spoiled schoolgirls, lesbians, and a school that may or may not be run by a vampire. It is the 1950s and existentialism is flourishing in Paris. But Viola, a seventeen year-old English girl, is languishing in an eli ...more
Paperback, 213 pages
Published September 14th 2006 by Grove Press, Black Cat (first published 2005)
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Robert Beveridge
A. P., Sabine (Black Cat, 2005)

Various blurbs on the cover of Sabine describe it as sexy, provocative, creepy, and scandalous, and the jacket copy adds gothic to the mix. Which is, I guess, accurate, as long as your definition of “gothic” doesn't include any of the stuff that makes gothic novels so wonderful (atmosphere, strong characters, a sense of impending doom matched only by hardboiled noir novels) but keeps the things that make so many of them so deadly dull (plodding language, absence of
i'm so disappointed. how could this book not be great?? did you read the description?? did you see the awesome cover??

it wasn't even interesting until halfway through. once it picked up a bit, i started to really like it...but then the ending sucked.

so disappointing.

good call going anonymous, A.P.
Bill Stevens
Totally horrible and unfocused book. Use it for campfire fodder!
Not very sexy nor particularly thrilling, whatever the back cover says, but a wonderful homage to les pulps and a nice play at the old vampire trope too. The writing, I thought, is very reminiscent of Nabokov in Lolita -- all that scattered French and yearning and philosophizing and word play-- a couple of passages keep especially close to the rhythm of it.

I am very curious to know just who AP is because I liked this book a lot and would like to read more from the author.
Lissie Johanson
I desperately wanted this book to be good. It wasn't. I won't ever get these hours of reading time back and therefore don't want to waste any more time talking about how horrendous the book is, except for this one point; IT'S TERRIBLE!!!!!
There's a ruling of the European Court of Justice that says if a novel is about bored rich teen girls at French or British boarding schools (and a fortiori in the Juliette Greco era), there must be both lesbians and vampires. This is part of the EU acquis communataire--- you can't join the EU unless you incorporate this into national law. "Sabine" starts off promising both lesbianism and vampires and fails to follow through. Brussels must take immediate steps to sanction the author. It's the law ...more
Well, there's three hours of my life that I will never get back. Oh, it was so wordy and my eyes just kept glazing over huge sections. Finally got a little interesting about 150 pages in, if briefly. And then the ending WAS a huge surprise. But for the most part, this was really not at all gripping. The writing was just so... I don't know. Not really 'heavy', but it was almost all description with precious little dialogue and it just became wearying after a while!
I'll be honest, this is the 3rd time I started this book and actually finished it.

The author (whoever it is!), really knows his stuff. There's a ton of references in here that I'd like to go back and check and read and then read the book again so I can enjoy it as the author intended. Aside from this I thought it was a decent read, and it's definitely worth reading to the end.
The book was interesting, and a VERY quick read. I LOVE that the author managed to non-chalantly mention Schumacher and Formula One. I was disappointed by the ending. It sort of seemed like the author was ready to be done writing the book for whatever reason, and slapped together an ending.
This is one of those stories that left almost no impression with me, neither good nor bad, neither inventive nor boring, also thanks to its short volume. The end was surprising, enough, though there were one or two scenes which already made me suspicious. A nice reading, no more, no less.
I thought this was supposed to be The Moth Diaries-ish. I was wrong. It wasn't even ~sexy like everything on the covers suggested.
Katie Sammis
The last five pages make it totally worthwhile; if I read books more than once I would re-read this one.
Beautifully written. The air of tragedy was palpable without being maudlin.
A very clever book about vampires - nicely written.
So boring I couldn't even get halfway through it.
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“Love is about giving, about caring for the other person's welfare. Love is treating someone, in the Kantian sense, never as a means but as an end in themselves. Love is sacrifice, love is something you work at, something you build like a house or tend like a plant, brick by brick, drop by drop, day by day. Nonsense. Old wives' tales, old husbands' tales. That is affection they are talking about, that is companionship, that is charity, that is tickets for the Cancer Research Ball. You must ask the young if you want to know what love is. Only they are deep enough in it to describe. We older ones have clues and simulacra, we base our judgement, like pathologists do, on the dents and scars and sediments of hearts long kept in formaldehyde. It is the pulsing heart you want to probe: the pulsing, beating, leaping, dipping, fluttering heart of a seventeen-year-old.” 5 likes
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