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Het huis van de zachtmoedige mannen

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  594 Ratings  ·  80 Reviews
In een villa stellen mannen die zich schuldig voelen over de manier waarop ze in het verleden vrouwen hebben behandeld zich beschikbaar om trieste en beschadigde vrouwen op te vangen en te troosten.
Paperback, 271 pages
Published 2001 by Luitingh-Sijthoff (first published 1999)
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Community Reviews

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Rating details
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Oct 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've seen both very positive and very negative reviews about this book. For me, this is one of the best books I ever had the pleasure to read. It's lyrical, poetic almost, with a lulling cadence that almost masks the horrors that take place in the lives of all the people involved. Almost, but not quite.

Everyone has his own burden to bear. Not only Charlotte, whose voice was stolen with her innocence at that riverbank. Not only Justin, who came to seek salvation and found more than he bargained
May 03, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: m-f
I have had a lot of trouble sorting my feelings on this book. I don't know if it is a 1 star or a 5 star, so hence the 3 star.

Here's the premise if you need a bit more from the blurb: (view spoiler)
Feb 19, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2005
To be totally honest, I thought this book was an insulting piece of crap. The only remotely interesting thing about it is the idea for the house itself -- in an attempt to win back the wife who left him, a man sets up a "house of gentle men". Men who have wronged women come to live at this house and try and redeem themselves, do penance, and find peace by "servicing" the women of the nearby town. They do not have sex with the women but kiss, carress, dance with, and, most importantly, listen to ...more
Mar 26, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This is the most disappointing book I've read in the last ten years. Not because the story line progresses at a glacial pace, not because the characters are predictable and lackluster, but because of how offensive it is to any man or woman who has fallen victim to sexual assault. Hepinstall trivializes rape. Rape victims do NOT fall in love with their rapists. The very thought is repulsive. Hepinstall needs a class in sensitivity training.
Carole Lanham
Kathy Hepinstall has the most beautiful voice. I found this book very haunting and lovely and wonderfully unique. The story moves rather like a mystery, revealing bits and pieces of heartache and drama from the past, even as characters and events hurtle toward a devastating conclusion. I felt a sense of dread as I read, and yet I couldn't put the book down. The writing is lyrical and lush as the Louisiana woods where the House of Gentle Men awaits, offering a chance for redemption to the guilty ...more
Saleh MoonWalker
Onvan : The House of Gentle Men - Nevisande : Kathy Hepinstall - ISBN : 380809362 - ISBN13 : 9780380809363 - Dar 352 Safhe - Saal e Chap : 1999
The House of Gentle Men has been on my radar for a long time. A few years back I read Hepinstall’s novel The Absence of Nectar which I liked quite a lot. There was something intriguing about the premise of The House of Gentle Men so I took a chance. I’m not sure that everyone in my book club would agree, but this book paid off for me.

The House of Gentle Men is actually the name of an establishment run by Mr. Olen, a single father who is hoping that if he makes up, in some way, for neglecting the
Eric Hall
Mar 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very well written book. The characters are fun, the conflict is entertaining, and the story is very well told.

Kathy has a way with words. She's a throwback to times when well written books also meant that the language used was musical, almost like coherent poetry. That's how Kathy writes; it's a trait you will find in all her books.

Kathy has a gift for immersing the reader in vivid imagery. She blends the environment into her stories in such a way as to add color and substance to the environmen
Apr 19, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-hated
This is one of the few books that I didn't finish because I just hated it that badly!

It is horrible. It is creepy. It has lots of weird, dirty filth in it. The plot is strange and doesn't make sense. It's also boring. I can't say enough bad things about it.

I read it almost a year ago, so I can't remember a lot of specifics, but I rarely stop reading a book because of pure hatred for it. Sometimes I stop reading because of boredom etc., but this was a much stronger emotion of dislike.

I did skim
Mar 19, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I am not a big fan of Kathy Hepinstall's writing. I hated "The Absence of Nectar", and this book didn't change my mind. The premise is extremely far fetched - a rape victim who unknowingly falls in love with her attacker. Readers have raved on and on about a story of love, loss and redemption. I was less enchanted. Ms. Hepinstall takes pieces of a puzzle and forces them together to form a neat little package for the ending. Happily ever after? Nonsense. I didn't buy it - the crime too heinous an ...more
Kimberly Westrope
Mar 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This is absolutely one of the best books I've read. It is a unique and beautifully written story of turmoil, betrayal, love, sacrifice, redemption, and forgiveness. Ms. Hepinstall's story shows us that love can originate where we least expect it and can overcome the most difficult obstacles, and heal the most broken of hearts. It really is a wonderful first novel. I can't wait to read her other books. I read this book two years ago and I still think about it and recommend it to everyone.
Jan 19, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A very leisurely book- almost too slow. While there were some good passages (in particular the part on p 255: 'I am seized by soldiers and by butterflies') I ultimately came away unsatisfied and somewhat annoyed that the book did not meet my expectations.
Sarah Jayyn
Dec 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This is, hands down, my favorite book. I've read it five times. I would recommend to anyone.
Jul 19, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very serange characters and general premise. I just had to finish it---call it a compulsion...
Jun 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I positively Loved this book! It was full of hope and redemption. The author writes in a language that kept me fastened to the page until the very end!
Jun 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful. One of the best, most beautifully written books I have ever read.
Nov 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A most unusual story. A place where women lacking and needing simple affection and closeness can go to find contentment in their sad and troubled lives. The men, looking for salvation for their past sins against women are expected to deliver whatever is asked of them - listening, dancing, caressing and kissing but not sex. Works wonderfully well until Justin arrives. He becomes the catalyst that will tear the house apart.
Aug 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Endings seem to be very hard for authors. It's true in this case, anyway. I liked almost the entire book, but it was spoiled by the ending!
Mar 22, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good first novel. Not fabulous, but an interesting story. I plan to try one of her later books, as well.
Sep 11, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lovers of literature and imagery
Shelves: romance, spiritual
Though I liked the first book I read by Hepinstall, "The Prince of Lost Places" I wasn't too sure how I would feel about this one. Had it followed the same plot vein, I might not have been overly impressed. But the story itself was amazing and the way it was told held my attention. It's been a long time since a book has held me in such a "can't put it down" way.

After being raped by three soldiers as a teenager, Charlotte has become a mute, not only because of this violation but also because of
Aug 10, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was unlike an other that I've read before in concept. Centered around a house where woman go who seek the intimacy that has been replaced with complacency in their own relationships with men, and the men of the house who service them, seeking redeption from past sins through these acts of intimacy.

I was really stirred by this book. I've thought a lot about this concept of women preferring ( furthermore, needing) intimacy (the men of the house are restricted to verbal, emotional intima
Jan 16, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
this is going to have a massive amount of spoilers so be warned

brilliant idea for a book, started well. I'm all for the 'they held her down and then later she walked away' type of description when it comes to rape, why oh why did Mizz Kathy think we needed to revisit it in detail in further chapters? Did she run out of things to say? Same goes for the Mother's death, either spell it out or don't, please don't do both!!! Now we have one set of siblings one with verbal diohrea and the other who ca
Delene H. Allen
Jul 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am intrigued by the title of Kathy Hepinstall’s, The House of Gentle Men. This surely must be a fictional place! Seriously, I easily give this book a 5-star rating.

To give any book a fair review, I look at the character, theme, plot, style and setting. I focus on the book’s purpose, content, authority, and I evaluate the quality meaning and significance of what I have just read. Hepinstall nails it on every level. She draws the reader into a setting of World War II where innocence is lost, cr
Mar 27, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was so torn on what rating to give this book. I finally settled on 3 stars, because, while the writing was gorgeous and the plot was well-developed, too many of the characters prevented me from truly loving this novel. Hepinstall packs quite a few characters into The House of Gentle Men, and I actually didn't find that to be a problem, because she somehow enables the reader to keep everyone straight. However, with the exception of Charlotte, Daniel, and Justin, I really had no idea who was goo ...more
Dec 12, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the worst books ever written! One of my book clubs read this book a couple of years ago, but I did not read it then. I bought a copy at our used book sale and had in my "to read" stack for over a year. Recently we were going on a trip and I looked for a paperback to read on the plane. I read this book on the plane, made notes so I could warn others not to read it, and dumped it in the trash at the airport as soon as I got off.

Every man in the book is a terrible person. Even the on
Mar 11, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The premise of this novel caught my attention immediately. Yes, it was of love, loss, forgiveness, innocence and corruption -- themes that have been explored countless times. But, this House of Gentle Men was an idea I hadn't heard of before and the theory of it is quite interesting to say the least.

Each character in the novel has demons and each searches for something. What saves the novel from reading like an overly sentimental drama or worse-yet, a trashy Lifetime movie is the author's choic
Linda  Branham Greenwell

The House of Gentle Men is a place where men who have hurt women can go to offer penance for what they did... and where women who have been hurt by men can go to be healed of their pain.
Without giving too much of the plot away, Charlotte, who is raped by three soldiers a mere two weeks after witnessing her mother die in a fire started by Charlotte's brother, is unwittingly reunited at the House of Gentle Men with Justin, one of the soldiers who participated in the rape. We observe as they slowl
At first I thought this book about a house of male prostitution, which it kinda is, without the sex.
Charlotte doesn't speak. She lives with her brother Milo, who I thought to be younger than her due to his antics. Milo likes fire.
Then we meet Louise who is the obsessive compulsive daughter of the man who runs "The house of gentle men. She has a brother , Benjamin, who is young (teenager if I remember right) who woo's the women leaving the house into having sex with him in the barn...
The wors
When I first started reading this book, every page was a struggle. I kept thinking, "Ugh, I don't like this story." So why did I read on. It was the dream-like writing, the description of thoughts. I felt like I was in a trance. Then I couldn't put the book down.

But I hated the premise, yet, I loved the telling of it. Broken women healed by evil men seeking redemption in a house set up for just such a thing deep in the woods of some southern state (which state was it?).

I guess I'm a sucker for
Sandra Murphy
Jan 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I cannot get enough of this author. Her words are lyrical, moving. This is a sad story and beautifully told. The characters are well developed. I was consistently amazed by the tension Ms. Hepinstall built throughout this story. Just when you thought the tension was at the breaking point, there was more. And there was some foreshadowing in the story, but there are also twists and turns. I could not stop turning the pages! I do not want to give anything away, but the only reason I gave this book ...more
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Kathy Hepinstall grew up in Spring, Texas, near the Louisiana border. Her most recent book is The Book of Polly. Polly is based, in part, on Kathy’s own mother, who has as wicked a tongue as her fictional counterpart. Kathy now lives in Portland, Oregon.
More about Kathy Hepinstall

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“All men have a little badness in them,' she whispered.
Milo looked at her. 'Sometimes, honey... a woman can be just as evil as a man.”
More quotes…