Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Easter Island Easter Island Easter Island” as Want to Read:
Easter Island Easter Island Easter Island
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Easter Island Easter Island Easter Island

by
3.65  ·  Rating Details ·  1,512 Ratings  ·  268 Reviews
In this extraordinary fiction debut--rich with love and betrayal, history and intellectual passion--two remarkable narratives converge on Easter Island, one of the most remote places in theworld.
It is 1913. Elsa Pendleton travels from England to Easter Island with her husband, an anthropologist sent by the Royal Geographical Society to study the colossal moai statues, and
...more
ebook, 450 pages
Published June 27th 2003 by Dial Press (first published 2003)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Tea Jovanović
One of my favourite picks for Serbian market... Good book, good story that deserves to be read for years and years... I'm sorry to see that none of my Goodreads friends has read it yet... :( But you can always change that... Published by Narodna knjiga - Alfa, 10 years ago... Let say for those who liked THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS...
Mathew
Apr 04, 2012 Mathew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
150 pages in, I'm really enjoying Easter Island. It has a patient, quiet narrative and masterful grasp of subject matter (botany, taxonomy, evolution and science in general) that is unassailable and reminiscent of Sacred Hunger. It also maintains an excellent balance and synergy between the parallel narratives of Elsa and Greer. It always seems a danger, to me, in this construct that one storyline will become dominant or just more interesting than the other. But so far, alternating, I always fin ...more
Lauren
Nov 07, 2010 Lauren rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book absolutely delighted me. I went into it with no expectations - it was a random selection from the library - and I finished it a little blown away. I have a feeling this is what The Conquest by Yxta Maya Murray wanted to be - a fictional novel that wraps science and fact into its tale - but where The Conquest stumbled, Easter Island soars. The characters are flawed and not entirely likable, the plot comfortable and not especially surprising, and the ending is not tied up in a little bow ...more
Heather
Jun 10, 2010 Heather rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Oh my what can I say about this book, except I seriously don't recommend it. Although it presents very interesting history and facts of Easter Island I would have been better off reading Wikipeadia. If you want to read about every scientific plant species grown on the island since it's volanic conception, go ahead and be my guest.

I kept waiting for the three separate stories to blend and make a wonderful marriage somewhere along the way, but geez by the last couple chapters I kept looking back
...more
Cherie
Jan 17, 2012 Cherie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed reading this historical fiction. It is becomming my favorite genera, and with stories like this one it makes it totally worth my time.

This story was written with three different sub stories involved. All of them converging on Easter Island on two different time lines. One story is about Elsa Beasley, her husband Edward and her sister Alice. Alice is what we call today a special needs individual. I could not exactly say what was wrong with her, but she was a high matenance charge. The
...more
Toni
The name Easter Island evokes a sense of mystery and romanticism. The book Easter Island delivers on both accounts.

Begin with an oceanic island fifteen hundred miles from any other landmass, one that had taken thousands of years for plant life to reach its shores and much longer before human life managed to land there. Add in two women, separated by sixty years as their parallel stories are told, each brought to Easter Island - one an Englishwoman who accompanies her anthropologist husband and
...more
Candice
Aug 25, 2007 Candice rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Ellen, Barbara (maybe)
This is my kind of book! I love it when two or more stories come together like this. Easter Island is the story of two women who went to the island and did research. But the two women's stories are 60 years apart. There is also a small thread of a German World War I naval squadron present in the book.

Elsa Beazley arrives at Easter Island in 1916 with her new husband and her mentally handicapped sister. Her story was inspired by the true story of Katherine Scoresby Routledge and her husband. Elsa
...more
Bettie☯
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ron Charles
Nov 27, 2013 Ron Charles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's comforting to imagine that aliens placed those inscrutable statues on Easter Island. Such a theory protects us from the more haunting implications about human nature. The tiny island, 2,300 miles west of Chile, was settled around 400 A.D. Its early inhabitants - with or without extraterrestrial assistance - carved more than 600 giant faces from volcanic rock and then dragged them to the shore. Some weigh almost 90 tons.

In her gorgeous debut novel, "Easter Island," Jennifer Vanderbes has att
...more
Diane
Jun 18, 2017 Diane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, women
Elsa Beazley came to Easter Island in 1913 and in the 1970’s Greer Farraday comes to Easter Island. Both come with a research agenda. I was slow to like this book, but it is a good story and by the end I was enthralled by the way the author overlaps the stories and uses the island’s famous secrets to tell how women make decisions.
Robin
The debut novel of Jennifer Vanderbes, Easter Island is a tale of two women from two different eras, both of who move to Easter Island to find refuge from their pasts. Both women are curious and intelligent, and both experience betrayal and loss as well as true friendship and love. Each woman becomes passionate about her particular scientific research.

Though the details of the women’s lives, told in tandem, are radically different, both must adjust to the culture of island life in their respect
...more
Kerith
Jul 26, 2011 Kerith rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Easter Island is one of those mysterious places that I've always found fascinating, likely because of the sheer distance away that it is. A novel like this merely whets my appetite. The author moves between the two stories, each of a woman who travels to Easter Island after a huge change in life -- Elsa Beazley after her marriage of convenience in the beginning of the 20th century and Greer Farraday decades later in the 70s, after the death of her husband. As each finds her place and true callin ...more
Virpi
Jan 21, 2014 Virpi rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Well, I had high hopes for this book: it all sounded so intriguing. I've always been interested in novels that mix facts with fiction - it's a facsinating way of learning new things. But, I must say, this book was a disappointment. The style of writing wasn't very gripping and for the longest time I just kept expecting the story to become interesting at some point. In the end, the two stories - Elsa's and Greer's - were very loosely - too loosely - knit together. And the whole story of the Germa ...more
Tiana Harris
Apr 22, 2013 Tiana Harris rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book read too much like a textbook, so I skimmed through quite a bit of it. The only thing that kept me reading was to find out the answers to the few mysteries in the book, and then was quite disappointed at the vague answers that were revealed. I don't like it when authors leave endings up to the readers to figure out. Give me a definite ending, let the characters in the book actually find the answers to the questions asked throughout the book! I also hate when the theory of evolution is ...more
Maya
Dec 29, 2008 Maya rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-2008
Yet another book about two sisters? What is with me! Strangely, this book has been sitting on my shelf unread since I bought it when it was originally published; yet I suddenly felt moved to pick it up and read it. The unconscious drive to sisterhood yet again.

I'm sorry it took me so long, as this was a carefully crafted story; if nothing else, the research that went into the writing of this novel is to be admired. The story moves back and forth between two female protagonists sixty years apart.
...more
Trish
Mar 16, 2010 Trish rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I read this years ago, when it came out in 2003. It became one of those books that I will never forget, and periodically I look to see whether the author has managed to sneak anoather title out while I wasn't looking. (She hasn't until this year, when in August 2010, Scribner is publishing Strangers at the Feast, which has already garnered several five-star ratings.)

This particular book struck such a chord because it was about a graduate student trying to make headway with her research and disc
...more
Abby Vegas
Jun 12, 2015 Abby Vegas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one book that I didn't want to put down. Told as parallel tales (one in the distant past, another more contemporary), Easter Island is a compelling and suspenseful novel. The story has so many facets to it - courage, feminism, family, anthropology, botany... I don't know how Jennifer Vanderbes managed to tie it all together but she did a fantastic job. This is a stay-up-all-night-to-finish-it book.
Jane
Jun 23, 2013 Jane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this novel. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in historical fiction, botany, Rapa Nui (Easter Island) and its mysteries, naval battles in World War I, and/or Darwin. It is a wonderful book!
Jana
Sep 05, 2008 Jana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Fabulous book that combines great characters, science, history, psychology, mystery. A wonderful read!
Stephen Kiernan
Mar 05, 2012 Stephen Kiernan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brilliant, vivid, compelling. As skillful with narrative lines as Stegner's Angle of Repose.
Prabhat
Easter Island

The name itself sends a chill down my spine. I read about this mysterious island in a book titled ‘World Famous Unsolved Mysteries’ several years ago. Since then it has always arrested my interest even at the slightest mention of it. Therefore, when I stumbled upon this book at the old book store, I bought it instantly. The highlight on the back cover suggested a tale of mystery where two stories, belonging to two different eras begin to unfold in this mystical island and finds an i
...more
Jen Crichton
This book provides a fascinating insight into the history of the isolated island in the Pacific Ocean known as Easter Island or Rapa Nui in local dialect. It is famous for the enormous stone statues which once stood along the coast, but were mysteriously knocked to the ground many centuries ago. The plot is made up of separate strands involving three different sets of people who travel to Easter Island. The first sub-plot is set in the 1970s and is about a woman scientist who travels to the isla ...more
Marla Knaack
Jun 05, 2017 Marla Knaack rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing book.

It was a little too technical for me, but once I could get past that, I really enjoyed the stories. I was surprised by the twists, and never once suspected the outcome. The two storylines come together in a completely wonderful way. I can't wait to read more about Easter Island.
Val Wilkerson
Jun 10, 2017 Val Wilkerson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-books
Fantastic book, Fantastic writing. So much knowledge about Easter Island and the Moai, so much history, such fantastic characters. This book and its characters carry you away to Easter Island and make you fall in love with the island and the people. I will immediately look for more books by this author.
Alice Dixon
Jun 25, 2017 Alice Dixon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book. Very good writing. Tells a good story.
Karen
Jul 02, 2017 Karen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good story, but at times it read more like a research manual. Also, too many loose ends. But I did learn a lot about Easter Island.
Silverpoint
Jul 09, 2017 Silverpoint rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5
Oceana2602
Jun 09, 2009 Oceana2602 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Todd Stockslager
Jun 05, 2015 Todd Stockslager rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Botanico-historical fiction works pretty well in this debut by Vanderbes. She inserts the story of a fictional 1913 British husband-and-wife (and her younger psychologically-challenged sister and ward) expedition to the island into the still-unresolved historical and ecological context of the island. The story then cuts back and forth to 1973, when a widowed American botanist comes to the Island to help solve the mystery of where the trees went (Easter Island has had no trees in its recorded his ...more
Donovan Richards
The Locals Call It Rapa Nui

A solitary land mass with its closest neighbor over 1,200 miles away, Easter Island is famously known for its moai statues – monolithic figures erected throughout the island. Along with the rongorongo – a series of undeciphered written tablets found in the caves of Easter Island – the moai remain in imaginations worldwide for the mysterious nature behind their creation. Perhaps obviously but nevertheless in need of stating, this famed island provides a backdrop for Jen
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Travels in a Thin Country: A Journey Through Chile
  • Surviving Paradise: One Year on a Disappearing Island
  • The Knowledge of Water
  • White Ghost Girls
  • The Road to Ubar: Finding the Atlantis of the Sands
  • This Cold Heaven: Seven Seasons in Greenland
  • When in Rome: A Journal of Life in the Vatican City
  • Huasipungo
  • The Hemingway Book Club of Kosovo
  • The Grand Complication
  • Thuggin In Miami (The Family Is Made : Part 1)
  • Walking Into the Night
  • The Violin Maker: Finding a Centuries-Old Tradition in a Brooklyn Workshop
  • Plum Wine
  • Auringon asema
  • Aku-Aku: The Secret of Easter Island
  • Skinner's Drift
  • The Green Age of Asher Witherow
57440
Jennifer Vanderbes received her B.A. in English Literature from Yale and her M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Her first novel, Easter Island, was named a "best book of 2003" by the Washington Post and Christian Science Monitor and was translated into 16 languages. Her second novel, Strangers at the Feast, was called "a thriller that also raises
large and haunting question
...more
More about Jennifer Vanderbes...

Share This Book



No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »