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Las partículas elementales
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Las partículas elementales

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  21,678 Ratings  ·  1,317 Reviews
Una visión feroz y sarcástica del presente a través de dos hermanastros cuarentones, Michel, un investigador en biología que vive como un monje, ha renunciado al sexo y sólo pasea para ir al supermercado, y Bruno, profesor de literatura, consumidor de pornografía, misógino, racista y virtuoso del resentimiento. Una novela demoledora sobre una generación derrotada de la man ...more
Paperback, 328 pages
Published October 2002 by Anagrama (first published 1998)
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David I second The Map and the Territory. It's not quite Houellebecq Lite, but it's the least likely to offend. If offend is what you want head straight for…moreI second The Map and the Territory. It's not quite Houellebecq Lite, but it's the least likely to offend. If offend is what you want head straight for Atomised / The Elementary Particles.(less)

Community Reviews

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Helen Ροζουλί Εωσφόρος   Vernus Portitor Arcanus Ταμετούρο   Αμούν Arnum
(Η κριτική περιέχει ενύπνια ψιχία αποκαλύψεων πλοκής).



Ο κλονισμός των κλωνοποιημένων
•Θα μπορούσαμε να πούμε ότι συνολικά 12 σωματίδια αποτελούν τους βασικούς δομικούς λίθους του σύμπαντος, από τη γέννησή του μέχρι σήμερα. Όχι ακριβώς! Η σύγχρονη θεωρία που περιγράφει τον μικρόκοσμο, η κβαντομηχανική,  προβλέπει (και έχει αποδειχθεί πειραματικά) την ύπαρξη του αντισωματίδιου: σε κάθε σωματίδιο αντιστοιχεί άλλο ένα, με ίδια μάζα και αντίθετο ηλεκτρικό φορτίο. Ετσι ο συνολικός αριθμός των σωματιδ
...more
Manny
You can interpret this book in several different ways. A lot of people view it as a depressing, hate-filled rant, filled with a really startling amount of unpleasant sex. I'm not saying that that's necessarily incorrect. In fact, my immediate association was with the fictitious books that Moreland invents in one of the Anthony Powell novels: "Seated One Day at my Organ", by the author of "One Hundred Disagreeable Sexual Experiences". But I think there are more interesting ways of reading Les Par ...more
Greg
Aug 21, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, life-is-shit
"It's a curious idea to reproduce when you don't even like life."

It's rare to come across a book filled with so pure of hate. At first I thought maybe it's was just some good old fashioned misogyny, with maybe a little bit of nationalism and Arab hating thrown in, but then something curious happened, the whole of society got thrown into the hate-fest that is this book. Hippies? Hate them a lot. Italians? Yep, really hate them, we don't say why we just do. Nature? Fuck it!! Sex? Love it but hate
...more
Joshua Nomen-Mutatio
Jan 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Joshua Nomen-Mutatio by: brian
Shelves: fiction
Wow. What an incredible book. The Epilogue makes a huge difference in how one might view it on the whole. It certainly did for me. I was getting so depressed by the end that I almost chucked it aside around the 90% mark because I felt a panic attack coming on. But I took a deep breath and I switched up my reading soundtrack and I pushed on and am very glad that I did. The Epilogue really clarifies so much that precedes it. Leading up to that point it is basically 100% bleak, and I mean truly, tr ...more
sarah
May 14, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Okay, I decided I would take a go at actually justifying my rating for this book, rather than just make half-hearted apologies at my preference for a so-absurdly misogynistic and, let's be frank, pornographic novel.

First of all, I like Houellebecq's unrelenting pessimism. It's far beyond nihlism - so more destructive and negative, so more emphatic in its rejection of bougeoise norms, of religion, culture, capitalism. This book (as well as the other Houellebecq I read, Platform) captures the ble
...more
Fabian
Jun 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Extraordinary, outstanding, absolutely not-to-be-missed*!

* "The Elementary Particles" holds you captive like only the best of 'em can. Think-- a long, cold autumn afternoon sipping coffee and reading "Never Let Me Go." Think-- Dan Brown# poolside. All of these experiences that could conceivably last one blissful, insatiable sitting (the novels that are not considered novellas, that is)-- this is one of 'em. The artistry is like a painting, the reading is like some immersive exercise that blends
...more
Jessica
Years ago, I went out on a few dates with a French guy. He was rich and good looking (though, of course, way too short), and he seemed pretty smart but I never could bring myself to kiss him. He had this typically Gallic extreme snottiness that I found amusing, even endearing, but even as I enjoyed this I suspected that his disdain for everything non-French might indicate something a bit too dark for me. At a certain point I decided that he wasn't a regular charming misanthrope: I discerned that ...more
Lorenzo Berardi
Jul 12, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: french
This book brought me to laughter. And this is not a compliment, but actually quite the opposite.
Every character here is monodimensional and unrealistic, while the story itself is ridicolous.

Blame me if you like, but after the tenth masturbation scene filled up with philosophical rubbish and Andre Gide quotes I've felt a big nausea coming up. And this malaise stayed with me till the end of the novel.

There are many novelists who have their own obsession for sex and some of them are consistently
...more
Hadrian
Dec 13, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: french, fiction
I wish I was able to write a more detailed reaction to this novel, but I feel nothing. Not in the sense of 'poetic existential despair' nothing, but total non-commitment.

These cynical rants against humanity are really all the same, aren't they? Occasionally you find one with at least some stylistic flair and originality, like Céline's, but here I see failed edgy attempts to shock with bad sex, loneliness, and a touch of misogyny.

So fucking what? I'd go read Reddit comments if I wanted to read t
...more
Chris_P
Jan 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The way Houellebecq combines science and sociology is amazingly intelligent and deliciously dizzying. Asexuality and sex addiction, the two offsprings of the sexual liberation of the 60s, are envisioned by the French author in a marriage whose fruit seems to be extremely... Nietzschean. I must admit I got completely carried away, while the trick he pullled in the epilogue had me looking for my mind cause yeah, I suddenly felt it missing.
Amazing stuff.
Jeffrey Keeten
Aug 09, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: the-french
This is the second Houellebecq novel that I have read. Usually when I talk about why I like novels it usually has to do with the great characters that I identified with or the amazing plot or the entertaining action. Houellebecq provides none of these things. In fact, while I was reading this book, my daughter asked me what the book was about and I went uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

His characters are unhappy and disfunctional. Houellebecq's books create controversy to the point that he has ended up in cou
...more
MJ Nicholls
The longueur of French academic life. The pain of being 40 and unfuckable. Something about quantum physics. It's all here in this eggheady gloom festival.
Amrit Chima
Sep 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Gratuitous sex. For those who have read this book, it’s not a surprising initial comment. The sex in The Elementary Particles is graphic, drawn-out, and explicit. Yet the novel has such an intellectual draw that even at its most seemingly uncalled for, I believe Houellebecq had a purpose for it. Through the suffering of two brothers—Bruno whose libido is painfully (and often shamefully) intense, and Michel who has virtually no interest in sex—Houellebecq depicts mankind’s struggle with materiali ...more
Rhonda
Feb 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
João Carlos
Feb 07, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: l2017
Em 2015 li dois romances do escritor francês Michel Houellebecq (n. 1956): a ”Extensão do Domínio da Luta” (1994) (4*) o seu primeiro romance e ”Submissão” (2015) (4*) o seu último romance. Em ambas as obras – apesar de temáticas díspares – a narrativa e a escrita criativa, suscitaram múltiplas leituras e variadas interpretações, revelando Michel Houellebecq como um dos mais originais e controversos escritores da actualidade.
Em ”As Partículas Elementares” (1998), o seu segundo romance, Michel H
...more
Steven  Godin
Jun 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, french, modern, amour
Daringly original and yes, ludicrously filthy!, but for anyone that thinks this is just three hundred and eighty pages of Masturbating, blow-jobs and debauchery your missing the point, as there are far more serious things going on here than spanking the monkey! and alike. Michel Houellebecq has written a work of great intelligence and maturity that is nihilistic in nature and immensely sad but was always compulsive reading. Concerning French half-brothers Michel and Bruno where the only thing th ...more
Grayem82
Jun 26, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Oh God. I'm about half way through this book, which I picked up on a whim after finishing the excellent Blindness by Jose Saramago. I needed something else to read until I got a copy of Dave Eggers' What is the What, and this had got a lot of raves.

So far, I'm as close to tossing this book away unfinished as I have ever been. I almost always finish books, but this is just a chore.

As offensive as parts of it are (yes, yes, I'm supposed to be offended, and I can see the ambiguity about whether the
...more
Milica Chotra
Jul 11, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The universe is merely a chance arrangement of elementary particles. A transitory image in the midst of chaos. Which will end with the inevitable: the human race will disappear. Other races will appear, and disappear in turn. The heavens are cold and empty, traversed by the faint light of half-dead stars. Which, also, will disappear. Everything disappears. And human actions are just as random and senseless as the movements of elementary particles. Good, evil, morality, fine sentiments? Pure “Vic ...more
Lee
Apr 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Damn! I've had this for years, only read it recently, wished I'd read it long ago. Totally brilliant. Purposefully vicious and perverted to make philosophical points about the unhappy state of humanity. Juxtaposition of many sagging labias and licked cocks (which sadly might turn idiots off) with mucho genetics-related philosophizing (which sadly might turn idiots off). A book about the achievement of utopia, sort of like Huxley's BNW and Island, which the book deals with. Another uber-pessimist ...more
Jim Elkins
Oct 09, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: french
When the Middle Class Aspires to Cold Nihilism

Well, it seems there is hardly any point in contributing an other review, when so many people think "The Elementary Particles" ("Atomised" in the UK) is a "powerful," "unflinching" book. But it brought Houellebecq into the public eye and set the stage for his later books, so it's worth reconsidering.

I think it's weak: weaker than all of the models he attempts to emulate.

If you want genuine existential disorientation, read Sartre.

If you want intransi
...more
Macoco G.M.
Jul 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
Suelo leer solo libros clásicos, pero en esta ocasión he apostado por este autor contemporáneo del que llevaba bastante tiempo escuchando hablar.
Para mí ha sido una sorpresa descubrir a Michel Houellebecq
Dicen que es el "enfant terrible" de la actual literatura francesa. Dicen que es la única estrella literaria desde Sartre. No sé si es para tanto (no creo), pero el libro es muy original. Algo desestructurado, pero me gusta que sea así.
Narra la historia de dos hermanos, un científico racional y
...more
Warwick
Dec 20, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, paris, france
Another author in that very French intellectual tradition which seems to confuse being cynical with being profound. The basic thesis is that humans are risible and worthy of our hatred, and that interpersonal relationships are a despicable delusion. Some of this is illustrated with neatly-done set pieces, other parts are more didactic. The novel shows a consistent disgust for human bodies and sexuality which I thought rather juvenile.

There are some moments of wit, but in general the prose style
...more
Paul Bryant
Nov 18, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
A lot of this book consists of a tirade of hatred against the author's dear mama. Now finally, the 83 year old hippy herself has emerged from her retreat with all guns blazing. Hilarious article about the whole rancid argument here

http://books.guardian.co.uk/departmen...

Sample quote

"If it hadn't been my son, I wouldn't read that kind of crap, I would put it down straight away, because if there's one thing I detest in the world it's pornography. That book is pure pornography, it's repugnant, it's
...more
مروان البلوشي
تاريخ القراءة الأصلي : ٢٠٠٥
ماذا يحدث داخل عقول ونفسيات مجتمع ودع المسيحية والعائلة التقليدية والجنس المكبوت ويعيش حرية تامة مع مشكلة التعامل مع ملايين المهاجرين من المسلمين؟
Léonard Gaya
Sep 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ceci est le deuxième roman de Michel Houellebecq, paru en 1998, quatre ans après Extension du domaine de la lutte. Il causa alors un vif émoi dans les cercles littéraires français et valu à son auteur une célébrité qu’il a conservée jusqu’à ce jour. Le scandale provoqué à l’époque est sans doute attribuable aux nombreuses scènes pornographiques très détaillées qui parsèment le récit.

Mais, si ces descriptions rendent la lecture assez piquante, elles prennent leur place dans une longue chronique d
...more
Vasileios
Mar 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-greek
http://dreamersandco.com/2015/09/%CF%...

Τα στοιχειώδη σωματίδια του Μισέλ Ουελμπέκ είναι ένα βιβλίο που ήθελα πολύ καιρό τώρα να διαβάσω. Κι ενώ περιμένουμε με ανυπομονησία την κυκλοφορία του νέου του βιβλίου Υποταγή, είπα να του δώσω την ευκαιρία που του αξίζει. Είναι ένα βιβλίο για την ευτυχία και πως αυτή ορίζεται στη σύγχρονη δυτική κοινωνία.

Παρά τη σχετικά πρόσφατη κυκλοφορία του βιβλίου (πρωτοκυκλοφόρησε στη Γαλλία το 1998), είναι ένα βιβλίο που μπορεί να χαρακτηριστεί ένα σύγχρονα κλασικό
...more
Sve
Aug 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Несъмнено изключителен роман, макар че в един момент мизантропията и цинизма ми дойдоха в повече.
Харесвам автори, които успяват да съчетаят личните истории с важни исторически събития и да уловят духа на времето.
Харесвам и книги, които ми дават допълнителна информация в области, които едва ли биха ме заинтересували иначе и правят връзки между наглед несвързани неща.
Kaloyana
Aug 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ммм, да... почти 400 страници за почти два дни. Не можах да я оставя!

Първо да кажа, че тук има толкова много секс, извращения, страст, задоволяване на плътски щения и нагони, толкова подробно и прецизно описани сцени, че по едно време стигам до един цитат от Пруст и вместо "простотата", аз чета "простатата" :) И си викам, какво стана тука, бре? И Пруст ли? :)
Но дотук с веселбата.

Страхотно се изкефих на тази книга. Мишел Уелбек прави дисекция с думи. И то много успешно. Реже до кокал, без упойка
...more
Arwen Ungar
Both oddly engrossing and somehow also barely readable, Elementary Particles, like all of Houllebecq's narcissistic novels, focuses its aim on men solely obsessed with getting their aged and increasingly flaccid penises erect long enough to fulfill the characters' unending pedophiliac whims. This one is worse than The Possibility of an Island, which at least gave readers a few sci-fi reasons for the dystopian world. In the end, nearly both books arrive at the same end: humanity is doomed, filled ...more
Marcello S
Jan 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quanta roba: l’amore, la solitudine, il post 68, il consumismo, il crollo della società occidentale, le pratiche new age, la biologia molecolare, la genetica (trattate, queste ultime, col piglio del ricercatore). E poi sesso, sesso, sesso.

Houellebecq mi pare uno che non si accontenta, che cerca la perfezione. Che si gioca tutto senza mollare mai il tiro. Alla fine risulta più volte eccessivo, ridondante, ripetitivo, ma si porta a casa diversi strike.

Questo romanzo è colmo di una tristezza ineso
...more
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Michel Houellebecq (born Michel Thomas), born 26 February 1958 (birth certificate) or 1956 on the French island of Réunion, is a controversial and award-winning French novelist. To admirers he is a writer in the tradition of literary provocation that reaches back to the Marquis de Sade and Baudelaire; to detractors he is a peddler of sleaze and shock. Having written poetry and a biography of the h ...more
More about Michel Houellebecq...

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“People often say that the English are very cold fish, very reserved, that they have a way of looking at things – even tragedy – with a sense of irony. There’s some truth in it; it’s pretty stupid of them, though. Humor won’t save you; it doesn’t really do anything at all. You can look at life ironically for years, maybe decades; there are people who seem to go through most of their lives seeing the funny side, but in the end, life always breaks your heart. Doesn’t matter how brave you are, how reserved, or how much you’ve developed a sense of humor, you still end up with your heart broken. That’s when you stop laughing. In the end there’s just the cold, the silence and the loneliness. In the end, there’s only death.” 151 likes
“It's a curious idea to reproduce when you don't even like life.” 120 likes
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