Richard's Reviews > Pure

Pure by Andrew Miller
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Jul 23, 12

bookshelves: 2012
Read from July 16 to 20, 2012

This is so interesting to me because it's another case of a book not living up to its hype and awards (see Swamplandia.)

Pure is a fictionalized history of the exhumation of the entire Cemetery of the Innocents, smack dab in the center of a Parisian neighborhood, and takes place just prior to the French Revolution. That being said, and even with period detail, the dialogue is oddly modern, and a sense of the past not quite there. There are a few curious and illuminating details like the slight putrefaction of the breath of n'hood dwellers, and the strange taste of food, but the details don't build to create a complete picture. It's a disappointing read.

While I was reading I kept referring to "Pure" as a "little book," but there's nothing little about it coming in at over 300 pages. I've since refined my thought and what I've decided is it's "slight," and my interest flagged about 1/2 way in. My first thoughts were that not much is happening here and I hoped some sort of Madame Bovary transcendence would set it, but, no. Things do happen, most noticeably totally unmotivated rape, murder, and suicide, and though I enjoyed the characters and concept, the book remains "slight."
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message 1: by Guy (new) - rated it 2 stars

Guy Portman I was also very disappointed by Pure as I felt it didn't deliver on its rather exciting premise. I take it you won't be reading any more Miller books in the future?


Richard Guy wrote: "I was also very disappointed by Pure as I felt it didn't deliver on its rather exciting premise. I take it you won't be reading any more Miller books in the future?"

Ha ha, probably not, but who knows?


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