Forty-four-year-old Reta Winters, wife, mother, writer, and translator, is living a happy life until one of her three daughters drops out of university to sit on a downtown street corner silent and cross-legged with a begging bowl in her lap and a placard round her neck that says "Goodness."
The final book from Pulitzer Prize-winner Carol Shields, Unless is a candid and...more
In Carol Shields’s Unless, Reta Winters, a happy, middle-aged novelist and translator, a wife and mother of three children, discovers that her 19-year-old daughter has dropped out of university and is panhandling on the streets of Toronto holding a sign that reads “Goodness.”
That one-sentence synopsis, while accurat ...more
Except, I’m actually getting worse at picking novels to read. I just checked, and 13 out of 27 novels read so far this year have got a 1 or 2 star rating, i.e. I hated them & felt they were ...more
Here Shovelmonkey1, it says, meet some new authors. Put your eyes between their pages and let their words roam around in your h ...more
I finished the book in about two days with a wicked ...more
Her latest novel, a mischievous monologue called "Unless," begins with lamentations. Reta Winters once had it all: a loving partner who's a successful doctor, three smart daughters, a beautiful house outsid ...more
A perfectly normal, healthy and congenial nineteen-year-old young woman who grew up in a closely-knit and nurturing well-to-do family suddenly quits university, her family and her boyfriend to panhandle in a street corner of downtown Toronto.
The novel is the youngster’s mother’s account of her experiences in dealing with the shocking loss of her lovely eldest daughter. She makes a desperate attempt to come up with possible reasons for her derelict daughter’s inconceivable action. Being a transla ...more
للروائية الكندية كارول شيلدز
رواية غريبة، قد لا تحبها، قد لا تفهمها، لكن العروج إليها يتطلب نوعية اهتمام معينة، لأنها تعبر عن فئة عمرية محددة -المرأة الأربعينية- تمارس مهنة صارمة لا تقبل ان تندرج ك الخطة ب في الحياة - الكتابة - ف لك أن تتخيل كم الصعوبة التي ستواجهها لسبر الرواية، شعرت بأني أقرأ سيرة ذاتية في البداية واستغربت تصنيفها كرواية ! لكني استرسلت في القراءة مستسلمة ومفتونة بتفاصيل حياة الروائية، شعور لذيذ يشبه شعور السطو والتلصص على خزانة امرأة لمعرفة أسرار تفوقها و أسباب قوتها، ول ...more
Upon reflection, though, I have realized that Sheilds truly is a gentle feminist, in the best way possible. While the ultimate quest in this story is the protagonist's daughter's quest for goodness, there is ...more
Yes, the plot is just like that but the way Carol Shields (1935-2003) writes is different from what I've read so far. It is fluid, supple and multi-layered or multi-pronged. I would imagine that if t ...more
The book focuses on how Reta deals with her daugher, Norah's, strange decision to live in a shelter and to beg on the streets. Reta starts to believe the reason why Norah became ...more
لكن ليست السعادة كما نتصورها ، فالسعادة هي ذلك اللوح الزجاجي الذي تحمله في رأسك ويستنفذ كل براعتك كي تظل متمسكاً به ، وحين يتحطم يتوجب عليك الانتقال إلي نوع آخر من الحياة ..
ولكننا لا نعرف كيف نطلب ما لا نعرف حتي أننا نريده
القراءة الأولي لـ كارول شيلدز ..
و .. لقد انتهت الرواية معي دون تقييم .. !
هناك شئ مُحير في هذه الرواية .. شئ يجعلك - ربما - تستمر في القراءة للنهاية علي أمل أن تجد ما يجعلك شغوفاً بها ..
لا أنكر أن هناك اقتباسات من نوعية السهل الممتنع .. شئ يطرق باب الفكر ويطل برأسه من بين الصفح ...more
Heartbreaking. Beautiful. Consuming. These are only a small portion of words that can begin to describe Unless by Carol Shields. Reta Winters' daughter is so overwhelmed by her desire to experience every success and beauty the world has to offer, but her realization that she can never have everything as a woman is too much to bear. As a result, ...more
"I'm not interested, the way some people are, in being sad. I've had a look, and there's nothing down that road ...more
On the one hand, this is the quintessential feminist novel, exploring the many ways in which women are invisible in our world. At the same time, Shields muses about the art of writing fiction, presenting the thoughts of her writer main character as an obvious reflection of her own philosophy on ...more
Things are going swimmingly for Reta Winters until a ...more
So many times in the book I thought "YES!" and "Well put!" and "Why can't I articulate like Carol Shields!? This is exactly how I feel!"
I loved this book, which I ignored for many years for some reason. No idea why, as I loved The Stone Diaries. While this one is different, it is equally as beautiful, and even more intellectual and precise. This is a book I'll save for my daughter, and one that I wish my husband could read, but I doubt he'd get it, which is, of cour ...more
From reading the synopsis, I thought the book would be about the dynamics of the mother and daughter's relationship and the disintegration of such. This was all about the books that the mother authored and her feelings. The daughter was hardly mentioned in the ...more
This kind of passive first-person storytelling will not work for all readers, but I loved Reta from page one.
“Happiness is ...more
"مگر آنکه معجزه ی زبان و اندیشه است"
کلاف نسبتا سردرگم داستان ، هزارتوی افکار و زندگی ریتا به هسته ی مرکزی ،یعنی دخترش نورا بازمیگردد.در هرفصل زوایایی از زندگی ، گذشته و یا افکار و تصورات ذهنش را میخوانیم اما د ...more
She has her protagonist state that she is not unaware of the irony of a writer writing about another writer. That's the protagonist speaking so Carol, the author, is writing about a writer writing about a writer, writing about a writer. There is an element o ...more