j's Reviews > Still Life

Still Life by A.S. Byatt
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Feb 18, 2010

bookshelves: book-club, library-books, to-not-read-ever, i-mean-i-am-sure-it-is-good-and-all
Recommended to j by: book club dictator
Recommended for: not a book club

The organizer of the book club I'd recently joined chose this for the group to read, citing it as one of her favorite novels read during the one year of an aborted Master's in literature that she managed to bring up at least twice per meeting.

I got this book out of the library. A few days later, I quit the book club. A few weeks later, the book club disbanded.

Just saying.
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Reading Progress

06/21/2016 marked as: to-not-read-ever

Comments (showing 1-14 of 14) (14 new)

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message 1: by Glee (new)

Glee I heard AS Byatt speak once. And decided not to read her stuff. I mean, she was very intelligent, but I was pretty sure her writing would be better appreciated by folks who were into PhD's in "esoteric depressing literature". Seems my spidey-sense got it right....


message 2: by j (new) - added it

j well, it's really my spidey-sense too. the book description, subject and first chapter were big noes.


message 3: by Tatiana (new)

Tatiana Glee wrote: "I heard AS Byatt speak once. And decided not to read her stuff. I mean, she was very intelligent, but I was pretty sure her writing would be better appreciated by folks who were into PhD's in "es..."

I felt exactly the same after attempting Possession. Sometimes it is easier to admit I am not smart enough than to go through the torture of reading such books.


message 4: by j (new) - added it

j i don't think it means you aren't smart. that's too easy. she just writes about very esoteric, niche subjects.

that are boring.


message 5: by Vinaya (new)

Vinaya I know I should stop making random recommendations, but you should really read The Djinn in the Nightingale's Eye. It's short stories, and I think it's sort of un-byatt-like. Also, awesome. If you do try it, Joel, I'd love to know what you think! :)


message 6: by Miriam (new)

Miriam I thought The Children's Book was all right, but you need to really like art pottery. The pottery is more interesting than the characters.


message 7: by j (new) - added it

j Miriam wrote: "I thought The Children's Book was all right, but you need to really like art pottery. The pottery is more interesting than the characters."

i am not rushing to amazon. ;)


message 8: by Miriam (new)

Miriam No, I wouldn't either. She's one of those Literary Giants the libraries always get, anyway.


message 9: by Lauren (new)

Lauren MacFarland To me, the novel seems so concerned on making grand statements on life and developing overarching themes and throwing in mumerous allusions to paintings and poems, that it forgets the little things. Like plot. And characterization.


message 10: by j (last edited Apr 21, 2013 04:14PM) (new) - added it

j sounds about right, not that i made it very far in.


Genevieve Why would you write a review of a book you were too lazy to bother finishing?


message 12: by j (new) - added it

j Genevieve wrote: "Why would you write a review of a book you were too lazy to bother finishing?"

i wouldn't dream of it.

i actually never even started this one.


message 13: by j (new) - added it

j it was tainted by the book club experience.


message 14: by Kate (new)

Kate Tebbett I've nearly finished the book. It's the first one we have read at our newly formed book club. I agree with the comments above. There's very little plot and the characters don't come alive. I will make a note never to read another book by her!!


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