Les Grand-mères
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Les Grand-mères

3.23 of 5 stars 3.23  ·  rating details  ·  291 ratings  ·  53 reviews
Sur la terrasse d'un café dominant la baie de Baxter's Teeth, deux familles, qui semblent n'en former qu'une, se prélassent au soleil. Roz et Lil, les grand-mères, restées belles, entourées de Tom et Ian, leurs fils, et de leurs petites-filles, semblent filer le parfait bonheur. Depuis toujours, Roz et Lil sont aussi inséparables que des sœurs jumelles, et l'affection qu'e...more
Paperback, 127 pages
Published August 17th 2005 by Flammarion (first published 2003)
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I imagine that if a reader's first Vonnegut was Galapagos they might wonder what all the fuss was about - so Proustitute's warning about this being a lesser Lessing, as well as many trusted GR friends' accolades of her other works, I'm fully prepared to say I just got unlucky on choosing this novella (republished as a one-off, as I learned from Prou that this is one of the four novellas from The Grandmothers) as my DL starter.

The characters, the idea for the story, the dialogue and pacing - not...more
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/

Roz and Lil have been best friends since their parents moved to the same neighborhood when they were children. They went to college together, dated together, got married in a double wedding ceremony, bought houses across the street from each other and had their sons at the same time. Now they are in their 30s, each with a teenage son and find themselves single (albeit for different reasons). The beauty of their respective sons first fi...more
It's funny how I so often end up unintentionally reading books with the same theme. I recently finished Zoë Heller's What Was She Thinking? [Notes on a Scandal], which also centres around inappropriate relationships between older women and young men. And then I picked this story up because it's been made into an Australian film, and I try to read the original before seeing the movie. Having read this and Notes, I think this is the better work.

The story (it's labelled a novella, but it's really a...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Courtney Hurley
I wish there were a rating somewhere between "it was ok" and "I liked it."

Having never previously read this author, I was captivated by the writing; poetic and really beautifully descriptive, without being tiresome. I don't usually read short stories, but the unique plot caught my eye, and I ended up reading the entire book in less than a couple hours, before even leaving the bookstore. The storyline progresses at a pretty rapid pace. Maybe something plot-wise (which I can't quite put my finger...more
I bought this when I was in Berlin, and I didn't have access to an English language bookstore. I purchased it to read on my iPad for two reasons: 1) it was cheap an 2) it was by an author whom I respect greatly. The story deals with three (probably four, once it comes to the grandchildren) sets of inseparable people: Lil and Rose are best friends, their sons becomes best friends, the sons' wives become best friends, and the children probably are best friends. The relationships that seem natural...more
Inspired by reading her obituary and other tributes yesterday, I went to a bookstore to see if I could pick up a book of hers to read on my flight home last night. Looks like this was originally in a collection of stories, but had been republished as a stand-alone book because someone has made it into a movie (which I only realized when I got on the plane and took a closer look at the book). Any description of the story would be a spoiler, so all I will say is that it was a good read, and whets...more
Kayley Correa
This novella in no way lived up to the film. I first saw the film on Netflix and then immediately went and downloaded the novella, which is only $1.99. Do i regret spending that $1.99, yes i do. I'm so bummed about how choppy and fast the story line was that i could only concentrate on the beauty of the movie. I will (normally) never say that a movie is better than the book but in this case i would say that's the case.


-The novella was written in a choppy manner. I understand that this
Yes, I admit, I saw the movie and wanted to read the book next, or the novella in this case. I had never even heard of it before and would have thought that I would read On Cats from Lessing before anything else. This isn't even the right edition, so it messes up my page count (that one had four stories and I am not interested in them at the moment). Oh, well...

So I liked the story, hardly a surprise there, considering that I already knew what was going to happen. It had weird, even a bit distur...more
The premise for this novella was interesting: two women who have been best friends since the age of five become attracted to each other's sons and end up in sexual relationships with them from the age of seventeen until their early thirties.

I liked the book. It moved along at a fast pace and certainly kept my interest. However, the characters lacked depth and I didn't feel any emotion for them. This was probably due to the fact that it was a 70-page novella, but that only makes me feel like Less...more
I wanted to read something in memory of this absolutely brilliant writer - as always Lessing turns the world completely upside down as she tells the tale of social transgression as two middle women take each others teenage son's as lovers - amazing!
This is a bizarre little thing--either a novella or a short story--and dazzling in its suspension of reality. The sedate, Edenic setting was especially alluring during the noisy holidays. I hesitated in recommending it to my mother:)
I originally picked this up off of a 'books to movies' display at work and found myself intrigued with the synopsis. The plot itself is odd and a bit strange enough to capture initial attention, and the first 10 or so page solidified my interest enough to finish the book. Granted, it's only about 70 odd pages, so it was a very quick read. The writing is gorgeous and gave me a very "beach" vibe while reading it. Amazing for such detail and setting development in such a small amount of text, but w...more
A- Quick read - read it in a night. This novella is the powerful story about how two women - best friends - fall in love with each other's sons. Excellent writing, and a page turner.
Liz (Liz'sBookBuffet)
"Two friends, two sons, two shocking and intense love affairs..."

When I saw this in the library, the first thing that grabbed my attention was "Winner of the Novel Prize for Literature." I have no previous experience with Doris Lessing's work and, in fact, had never heard of her upon seeing this book. But, winner of the Nobel Prize? Had to be good, right?

First of all, I finished this book about 18 hours ago and wanted to think about it, re-read parts of it, sleep on it, before writing my review....more
Adore is a small novella, just at seventy pages long, that is full of potential and delivers on none. The concept for the story would have made for a powerfully emotional novel or at the least an exciting short erotic/taboo story. But it is neither of these.

Adore follows two friends, Roz and Lil, as they marry, divorce and have sons. After their divorces they begin to have affairs with each others sons. They are all aware of it. They even carry on as if they were normal couples. The sons having...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Marisa (The Daily Dosage)
I was curious about this thin little novella at my library and have always wanted to read something by Doris Lessing.

Not a happy, jovial read since it covers some heavier topics up for debate and yet I wanted to see how the movie compared.


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To say that I was disappointed by this novella would be accurate. I have fond memories of reading "The Fifth Child" and confess that I was expecting something on par with that in quality of writing. Instead I found Adore rather choppy and almost abrupt. There seemed too much unsaid at times, and too much said at others. It's a very interesting premise for a book, and one I had hoped to enjoy more. Ah well, I have read worse, and expect that I will again.
I felt this was more of a psychological exploration of the Oedipus complex than a story. The characters didn't feel very nuanced and some of their reactions and dialogue were wooden and unbelievable. An interesting idea that wasn't fleshed out. It didn't help that I had one horrible flashback to reading "Lolita."
I know it's a novella and not a novel, and thus did not allow for much in the way of character depth and exploration, but I really did not understand anything about any of these characters. I had no sense of who they were or why they did the things they did. Unsatisfying and, honestly, a little icky.
Kristin Shafel Omiccioli
Read my review of The Grandmothers (a.k.a. Adore) by Doris Lessing at mylittleheartmelodies.com.
I've never read Lessing before and found this extremely good although it was a weird topic. the writing was wonderful and I finished it in no time. eager to read more.
Instead of making you believe how it should be she showed how things happen! She left you many questions! I enjoy a story that requires you to think and feel!
Prix Nobel de littérature 2007
Sur la terrasse d'un café dominant la baie de Baxter's Teeth, deux familles, qui semblent n'en former qu'une, se prélassent au soleil.
Roz et Lil, les grands-mères, restées belles, entourées de Tom et Ian leurs fils, et de leurs petites-filles, semblent filer le parfait bonheur.
Depuis toujours Roz et Lil sont aussi inséparables que des soeurs jumelles, et l'affection qu'elles se portent s'est doublée peu à peu d'un amour pour le moins trouble de chacune pour...more
This ain't what Doris Lessing won the Nobel for. Lots of interpersonal drama without a lot of insight. Onward!
My only previous experience of Doris Lessing was browsing the library in high school and discovering The Fifth Child. It was a gem of a find and so good that I vowed to return to her at some point and now, some 20 years later, I have. This story was a novella and only took an hour to read, but I was disappointed in the rushed disjointed telling of the story, and it WAS telling, not showing. Fascinating characters and I love Lessing's psychological truths but she is capable of much more than this...more
Aileen Nelson
First work I've read by her. Wow. I can't say I loved it but the writing was phenomenal
Eleanor Thorel
Interesting, disturbing..I actually preferred Doris Lessing's essay that was at the end of the Novella.
Very racy, even icky content, but fantastic writing and a unique story.
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Both of her parents were British: her father, who had been crippled in World War I, was a clerk in the Imperial Bank of Persia; her mother had been a nurse. In 1925, lured by the promise of getting rich through maize farming, the family moved to the British colony in Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe). Like other women writers from southern African who did not graduate from high school (such as Oliv...more
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