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The Buried Giant

3.49  ·  Rating details ·  61,332 ratings  ·  8,668 reviews
"You've long set your heart against it, Axl, I know. But it's time now to think on it anew. There's a journey we must go on, and no more delay..."

The Buried Giant begins as a couple set off across a troubled land of mist and rain in the hope of finding a son they have not seen in years.

Sometimes savage, often intensely moving, Kazuo Ishiguro's first novel in/>The
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Hardcover, 1st, 317 pages
Published 2015 by Knopf
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Betty Confetti
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Jordan He doesn't despise fantasy. That whole spiel comes from an overreaction by one author (Le Guinn) over a remark he made. What he actually said is:…moreHe doesn't despise fantasy. That whole spiel comes from an overreaction by one author (Le Guinn) over a remark he made. What he actually said is:

“Will readers follow me into this? Will they understand what I’m trying to do, or will they be prejudiced against the surface elements? Are they going to say this is fantasy?”

And it's clear, to me at least, what he meant. He's wondering whether this book will be accepted by fans of his previous work or if people will dismiss it out of hand because it contains ogres and dragons. And certain people have done just that.

I didn't find it in and personally wouldn't choose to put this in the sci-fi/fantasy section of the book store. It has elements of old pre-Lord of the Rings fantasy tales, but that isn't what the book is about. This is not fantasy in the sense of genre fiction. This isn't Dragonlance or Forgotten Realms. The fantasy elements are on the periphery. They are only there to enhance what the book is really about, to put a frame around the questions, if that makes sense.

Regardless, Ishiguro responded:

“[Le Guin]’s entitled to like my book or not like my book, but as far as I am concerned, she’s got the wrong person. I am on the side of the pixies and the dragons.”(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.49  · 
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 ·  61,332 ratings  ·  8,668 reviews


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Emily May
Apr 10, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy, 2015, modern-lit
I have only read one other Ishiguro novel and that is Never Let Me Go. Nevertheless, I too was intrigued about what would happen when a highly-acclaimed author of literary fiction transitioned into fantasy. Unfortunately, having read the book, I'm still not even sure.

What happened here? It's one of those novels where I can't help wondering if there's some underlying symbolism or metaphorical brilliance that totally went over my head. It's a simplistic, emotionally-detached and - at times - boring/>What
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Jayson
(B) 72% | More than Satisfactory
Notes: There’s meaning to be taken from its final few chapters, though the journey there is tiresome, plodding and colorless.
Andrew
Nov 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Is it better to remember? Or can we only live with ourselves and one another through ignorance?

Kazuo Ishiguro writes a spellbinding fable of one elderly couple's quest for memory. Their journey takes us deep into a nostalgically rendered Dark Age. A post-Arthurian Britain inhabited by the myths and heroes of those isles, and a few more mythic traditions as well. Yet it is a fragile Britain where everything balances on the knife edge: social mores, the civilizational veneer, lifelong
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Issicratea
Feb 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
The Buried Giant is a subtle and melancholy reflection on memory and forgetfulness and the roles they play both in the lives of individuals and those of countries and peoples. It is the kind of novel that yields up its secrets gradually, and it’s worth persisting with even if you are not initially convinced. It’s a very distinctive work—distinctive to the point of eccentricity—and the reviews have been accordingly mixed, some very negative. To enjoy it, you have to cede to its peculiar, incantatory r ...more
P-eggy
1 star - I don't often feel guilty at not being able to finish a book, but I do this time. It's not like I didn't try. I made three attempts to read it.

1. I got the book. I read a few chapters. The characters didn't have any personalities, the descriptions of them didn't bring them to life at all and I wasn't enamoured of the setting either. So I gave it up.

2. Tried the audio book. Was it going to be any better listening to the story paper-dry protagonists and their fantasy quest.
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°°°·.°·..·°¯°·._.· ʜᴇʟᴇɴ Ροζουλί Εωσφόρος ·._.·°¯°·.·° .·°°° ★·.·´¯`·.·★ Ⓥⓔⓡⓝⓤⓢ Ⓟⓞⓡⓣⓘⓣⓞⓡ Ⓐⓡⓒⓐⓝⓤⓢ Ταμετούρο   Αμ
Πολλούς αιώνες πριν σε μακρινά και απομονωμένα μέρη της Αγγλίας ζουν άνθρωποι μέσα στη λησμονιά.

Τεράστιες περιοχές έρημες και εγκαταλειμμενες ειναι το σκηνικό που περιγράφεται με αριστοτεχνικό τροπο και μέσα σε μικρές κοινότητες πανομοιότυπες ζουν Βρετανοί και Σαξονες με σημαία τους την ομίχλη και τη λήθη.
Δυο στοιχεία που πρωτοστατούν σε όλο το βιβλίο και σε κάνουν να αισθάνεσαι μια παράξενη θλίψη, μια ανεξήγητη νοσταλγία και μια τρυφερότητα συμπόνοιας.

Το παραμύθι του μεσαίωνα ξεκινά με ένα ζ
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Jan-Maat
Foolishness, sir. How can old wounds heal while maggots linger so richly? Or a peace hold for ever built on slaughter and a magician's trickery? I see how devoutly you wish it, for your old horrors to crumble as dust. Yet they await in the soil as white bones for men to uncover (p327)

Uncanny, haunting, I must have read this novel at the right time for me as it found a sure spot under my skin and disturbed my normally peaceful sleep.

It seems to me that Ishiguro is one of those wr
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Ashley
Updated 4/30/2015: For context, you should know that I’ve read three previous Ishiguro novels: The Remains of the Day, Never Let Me Go, and We Were Orphans. I disliked We Were Orphans pretty strongly, and liked Never Let Me Go (probably not as much as I would have if I hadn’t been spoiled for it, and I’d probably like it better on re-read). But Remains of the Day is one of my favorite books of all time. Like, if I had a top ten list of books that represent me and my inner life, this would be on it. So yeah, I had hopeful expect ...more
William2
Jun 09, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 21-ce, fiction, uk
I am an Ishiguro enthusiast if ever there was one. I have read his oeuvre. That's why it pains me a little to say that I found The Buried Giant disappointing. I say this not because I think Ishiguro's skills as a novelist are one whit duller than usual. But because I did not care for the story or its characters. They did not engage me. He's going after a new readership with this book. He's going after the vast fantasy market. That's fine. A writer must write what he must write. Just don't expect me t ...more
Andrea
Oh boy, this is the book that caused such uproar among Ishiguro fans! Before you pick up this novel, please believe me when I say this is going to be nothing like any of his previous work. So if you are resistant to change, you might want to skip this one. Don’t expect it to be The Remains of the Day, and definitely don’t think this is going to be the next Never Let Me Go. In fact this book won’t even be set in our own time or even plane of reality. On the surface of it all, The Buried Giant is ...more
Annet
I need to think about this book. Changed my mind from 3 stars to 3.5 rounded off to 4. Mainly because Ishiguro's style of writing is beautiful to me. And the story telling too, although this story had its highs and lows. Not his best, but still... Ishiguro style. So, I thought about it, and this book did make an impression on me. Therefore, changed my view....
And this link: Neil Gaiman reviewing the book, I like his observations.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/01/boo...
Barry Pierce
As someone who has read all of Ishiguro's previous works I was of course more than excited to finally get my hands on a copy of The Buried Giant. Oh boy, if only that excitement hadn't been sourly crushed by the actual contents of this novel.

The Buried Giant is very different from all of Ishiguro's other novels. In fact it's so different that I can't even compare it to any of his previous novels. The main difference is of course that this is essentially a fantasy novel. Now I'll be the first to put my hands up a
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Jill
Nov 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Kazuo Ishiguro is a master stylist, with books that range from futuristic, sci-fi, surrealistic and post-colonial. So it is no surprise that his new novel is unlike anything he has written before. Like its predecessors, this novel concentrates on memories: their power to silence, distort, and forever haunt, with characters that are often alienated and searching. Yet the book is distinctly an adventure fable, integrating an ancient British civilization with fantasy.

The two questions a
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Kristijan
Apr 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Pustio sam malo da se slegnu utisci, da razmislim o Išiguru, Pokopanom divu (ili kako god da ga budu preveli naši izdavači ako ga uopšte i budu preveli jer je retko ko u RS zainteresovan za objavljivanje njegovih romana a čovek je genije), likovima, rečenicama koje su mi ušle u genetski kod, temama, poruci,... i dolazim do neizbežnog zaključka da sam pročitao jedno izuzetno delo - toliko kompleksno, slojevito, isprepletano i ujedno toliko osećajno, setno, melanholično.
Ako očekujete da proč
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Dolors
May 17, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Not too demanding readers of fables
Shelves: read-in-2018
In “The Buried Giant” nothing is what it seems.
A fable that overbrims with symbolism and allegory.
A river to cross that might signify the last journey for an elderly couple on the land of the living. A tale set in post-Arthurian England with knights, dragons, ogres, sword duels and magic spells to convey aspects of human nature that elude all kind of logic, such as love, forgiveness, war and revenge.

Blending mythological legend and medieval epic, Ishiguro builds a world were people suffe
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Ahmad Sharabiani
The Buried Giant, Kazuo Ishiguro
The Buried Giant is a fantasy novel by Nobel Prize-winning British writer Kazuo Ishiguro, published in March 2015. The book was nominated for the 2016 World Fantasy Award for best novel, and the 2016 Mythopoeic Award for Adult Literature. It was also placed sixth in the 2016 Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel. The book has been translated into French, German, Spanish and Italian as Le géant enfoui, Der begrabene Riese, El gigante enterrado and Il gigante sepolto
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Phrynne
Mar 06, 2015 rated it liked it
For the first hundred pages or so I thought I was going to love this book. The idea of the old couple setting off on what amounted to a pilgrimage, the mist and the way people were losing memories and the beautifully executed writing style all added up to a possible five star read. Then just around the half way point I suddenly realised I was a little bored and was starting to skim the longer paragraphs. Part of this was that I had developed an attachment to Axl and Beatrice and did not want to ...more
Fabian
Jan 19, 2018 rated it liked it
Does 'The Buried Giant' Bury Our Own Literary One?

This being Ishiguro's last novel before receiving the Nobel Award (one assumes for 'Remains' & 'Never')--the answer is a loud resounding NO!!

But--

It vascillates between charming & unnerving, two polar opposite Ishiguro juggles well. It's an existential apocalyptic fairytale; a Shrek-world suddenly gone earl-grey and maudlin. Colourless...

It is One Wondrous Misfire. Not one to announce AT ALL what the m
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Holly Dunn
Spoiler-free video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DoTOX...

Written review (also spoiler-free):
Ishiguro’s new novel was my most anticipated release of this year, so I was unbelievably excited when a review copy came in from the Allen & Unwin representative. Thank goodness this lived up to (and even exceeded) my expectations. Set in 6th Century Britain, it follows an elderly couple who set out from their village to find their son. I knew nothing about this going into it, so it took me a little while to place i
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PopiTonja
Dec 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biblioteka
Sklopila korice, privila na grudi i tiho zajecala. Ostala tako dugo.
Vraticu joj se jednom ponovo. Do tada, o m i lj e n a!
Elaine
Mar 17, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2015
There are certain writers - David Mitchell, Kate Atkinson, Hilary Mantel, Chiang Rae Lee - where I think, "OK, I'll follow you anywhere, no matter how weird or improbable that place you want to take me is." A Dutch enclave in 18th century Japan? A futuristic Baltimore devoted to pisciculture? 1800 pages telling Tudor history from the vantage point of one of its better known villains? Groundhog Day set in WW2? Yes, and yes, and yes, and yes, and there you have half of my favorite books from the l ...more
Joey Woolfardis
This was my 900th book that I've read. Let me be clear on that, when I say my 900th book. I have not read nine hundred books from page one to the end. Or actually, I might have done. There may be books from my childhood and my pre-GoodReads-and-blog days where I read a book-either 3 pages or 500 pages long-that I've read all the way through that I've since forgotten about. As it stands, these are books that I've picked up, either physically or electronically and thought, "yes, I want to read you ...more
James
Jul 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
‘The Buried Giant’ is the first of Ishiguro's novels that I have read – and being well aware of his previous accomplishments, critical acclaim, Nobel and Booker prize winning standing – it was with much anticipation, high expectation, although inevitably some apprehension that I embarked on this book – would Ishiguro and this novel in particular live up to his high standing and reputation? I was far from disappointed…

‘The Buried Giant’ is a hauntingly evocative, compelling and intelligent story
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Perry
Oct 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The Raindrops of Our Memories

“But then again I wonder if what we feel in our hearts today isn't like these raindrops still falling on us from the soaked leaves above, even though the sky itself long stopped raining. I'm wondering if without our memories, there's nothing for it but for our love to fade and die.” K. Ishiguro, The Buried Giant

There are times, I think, one must admit bewilderment and a certain lack of knowledge or learning to fully understand some novels, but
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Nikoleta
Jan 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Πολύ καλογραμμένο, αλλα και πολύ μελαγχολικό, παρόλο που τελείωσε κι καταπιάστηκα με άλλα καθημερινά πράγματα, συνεχίζει να με κυκλώνει μία ελαφριά θλίψη.
3.5/5 αστεράκια.
Maciek
Mar 07, 2015 rated it liked it
Kazuo Ishiguro's latest book came as a surprise. It's been 10 years since his last novel, Never Let Me Go, and apart from a lone collection of short stories - Nocturnes: Five Stories of Music and Nightfall in 2009 - the author has largely been silent. The Buried Giant appeared suddenly and unexpectedly, without much fanfare - shouldn't it be a big deal?

Ishiguro's latest book is very different from the two of his novels that I have read, The Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go - both of which were set i
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switterbug (Betsey)
Jan 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Ishiguro cannot be pigeonholed as an author, although he does have emblematic characters. He can master the alternative present (Never Let Me Go), the WW II era (several), and, in this latest novel, the ancient past. He consistently pens flawed narrators that make critical, life-changing choices. And the narrators often leave their geographic comfort zone.

THE BURIED GIANT is a combination myth, legend, allegory, adventure, and fantasy. I didn't know if it would capture my attention w
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RitaSkeeter
One of the things I always find about a Kazuo Ishiguro novel, is how labyrinthine and multi-layered they are. I don't fully understand the book after a first reading, but this is a book I want to go back and read a second and third time, and sink further into its mysteries.

This is a hazy, melancholic, and atmospheric novel that draws you deeply into its folds as you join Axl and Beatrice's quest for answers. There is so much that could be said about this book, but I'm not the person
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Zaphirenia
Nov 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: magical-realism
3,5/5 με το μισό υπέρ του.

Θα ξεκινήσω την κριτική μου με μια ιστορία, την ιστορία του πώς ήρθε στα χέρια μου αυτό το βιβλίο. Και ήρθε ως δώρο από τον αγαπημένο μου, που μου το έφερε δώρο περιχαρής και αντέδρασα, αχεμ, ας το πούμε λίγο "άκομψα", λέγοντας "οοοοοχι, όχι αυτό, τόσα βιβλία έχει γράψει ο Ισιγκουρο!" My bad από όλες τις απόψεις. Πρώτον για την λάθος συμπεριφορά και δεύτερον γιατί το βιβλίο, κόντρα σε ό,τι είχα ακούσει, ότι θα ήταν βαρετό και δεν ξέρω κι εγώ τι άλλο, μου άρε
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Heidi The Reader
Axl and Beatrice are an aging married couple in the time of King Arthur. They're on a quest to visit their son and face otherworldly threats like ogres and pixies as well as more regular dangers like Saxons on the road. They meet a boy named Edwin, who has a secret, and a warrior named Wistan, who is on a quest of his own. Making matters even more difficult, there's a mind-fogging mist covering the land that makes people forget things that just happened to them moments ago and the past is a puzz ...more
Ivan
Nov 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
My favorite book from Ishiguro so far which is saying something since I given 5 stars to When we where orphans and The remains of the day is on my favorites list.
Fiona
This book is really interesting. It split the crowd, and I've scrolled through the reviews and none of them says quite what I thought about it. It took me two months to read. This review is probably quite cryptic and confusing, so I may come back and edit for clarity when I've had a bit of distance. Call it a work in tentative progress. (Edit: I've now added a note to the end - behold, opinions!)

They're calling this a departure for Ishiguro, and I don't really know why. Admittedly the only other
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Mish
I have only read one book in the past by Kazuo Ishiguro and that was Never Let Me Go. A deeply moving book about societies selfishness on a group of individuals. Beneath the surface there is a science fiction element but it’s unnoticeable – anyone could read this book, Sci-fi fan or not. So I thought when I received The Buried Giant it might be along the same lines or theme but I got it wrong. Ishiguro went into an entirely different direction with setting and theme. The only way to describe it, it ...more
Marilena and books⚓
*Edit 21/10/2019*
Παρόλο που έχει περάσει αρκετός καιρός που έχω διαβάσει το βιβλίο εξακολουθώ να το σκέφτομαι αρκετές στιγμές!Θα ήθελα να το διάβαζα κάποια στιγμή γιατί νιώθω ότι το έχω αδικήσει




Φλύαρος ο Ishiguro..Πολλές ασήμαντες πληροφορίες και τόσο λεπτομερής,σε σημείο να κουράζει.
Αλλιώς το περίμενα αλλιως μου βγήκε..
Θα του δώσω αλλη μια ευκαιρία και θα διαβάσω κι αλλο βιβλιο του στο μελλον και βλεπουμε..
Αν έχετε καποιο να μου προτείνεται γράψτε στα σχόλια,θα με διευκολ
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Dale Harcombe
I had heard a lot about this author which is why I put my name forward at The Reading Room for a copy. Thanks to The Reading Room and Allen and Unwin for my advanced reading copy to read and review. While I appreciated the beautiful writing at times and thought the book started off intriguingly, as it went on it never completely captured my attention. In fact I gave up midway for a while and read two other books in between, both books I powered through.
I liked the concept of the choice of livi
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Althea Ann
Apr 07, 2015 rated it liked it
OK, but not as good as I hoped.
This is the sixth of Ishiguro's novels that I've read, and my expectations were set very high. My expectations were also just very different from what I got - this is a radical departure from previous books.

Here, Ishiguro plays with elements of Anglo-Saxon history and British culture. 'Beowulf' meets Arthurian legend in a strange, mythic fantasy.

Axl and Beatrice are a devoted elderly couple in a primitive rural community. At first, the
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Raha
یه دیگ بزرگ بردارید ، بعد هر چی از داستانهای بچگیتون به یاد دارید ، از جن و پری و جک و لوبیای سحر آمیز و شنگول و منگول و حبه ی انگور و خلاصه هر چی تو بچگی خوندید بریزید توش ، یه اجی مجی لاترجی بخونید ، فوت کنید تو دیگ ... تبریک میگم معجون حاصله کتاب "غول مدفون " نام داره

نه واقعا چی بود این ؟؟...اژدها چی می گفت اون وسط!!؟ دوتا جمله ی فلسفی و عمیق هم نداشت که من دلم خوش باشه الکی مارکر دستم نگرفتم

ولی از حق نگذریم پایان غافل گیر کننده ای داشت

داستان کتاب درباره ی یه پیرزن و
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Bonnie
Feb 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
First of all, if your exposure to Kazuo Ishiguro is limited to *The Remains of the Day* or *Never Let Me Go,* you might be disappointed. Second, if your exposure to this book is the promise of early Saxon/Briton/Arthurian mythology, you might be disappointed. If, however, you're expecting an Ishiguro novel that merges, transcends, and subverts genre, then you're in good shape to enjoy this novel quite thoroughly.

I did. Quite thoroughly. At first, this seems like a quest narrative--an
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Kirsten #EndGunViolence
Mar 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I don't give 5 stars very often, but I felt this was far better than 4 stars. I have never read by Mr. Ishiguro before, but now I want to go back and read his others if this is any benchmark.

An absolute delight of a book, we drift back to a post-Arthurian Britain. A Britain of Saxons and Britons, dragons and ogres, Christianity and magic, war and an uneasy peace.

I loved this book. It was heartbreaking and thrilling. I highly recommend it.
Teresa
Apr 10, 2015 rated it liked it
It's repetitive of me to say Ishiguro never repeats himself, but I say it again. His stories are vastly different from one another, though his favorite theme is that of memory and his narration, especially at the start of his works, can usually be described as flat. Partly because of that latter quality, I wondered at first if this novel might end up being a surreal dream like The Unconsoled or a surreal adventure like When We Were Orphans; but, no, despite its matter-of-fact fantastical elements, this is not a s ...more
Book Riot Community
I loved this latest Ishiguro novel for the same reasons I love everything he writes- you never know what’s around the next corner, what secrets will be revealed, what new richness the English language has to offer. The Buried Giant brings together Arthurian legend, myth, and history, as well as meditations on identity and memory, and how the two are inextricably linked. Ishiguro follows an old married couple journeying to find their son, moving through the mists that have clouded their memory. I ...more
Pavle
Nov 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Zakopani džin je definitivno Išigurovo delo, njegov stil je očigledan i prepoznatljiv već na prvi pogled. To mogu da kažem iako sam pročitao samo još Ostatke dana.

Takodje mogu da kažem i da je Išiguro majstor svog zanata. Količina sugestije, aluzije i alegorije koju on uspeva da uplete u svoja dela je nezamisliva. Kao i Ostaci, ovaj roman žudi za višestrukim čitanjem i sigurno ću mu se kad tad ponovo posvetiti.

Likovi Zakopanog džina su na neki način otelotvorenja: časti, ljubavi, besa, tuge. A
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Somayeh Pourtalari
داستان کتاب در انگلیس پس از شاه آرتور و در حالی به وقوع میپیونده که در دنیایی که در آن جادو و موجودات خیالی وجود دارند، به دلیلی مرموز، تمام مردم کشور گذشته خود را فراموش میکنند و بعضی مواقع اتفاقهایی که حتی چند ساعت پیش افتادهاند را هم به یاد نمیآورند. عدهای میخواهند این مسئله را تغییر بدهند و این سوال پیش میآید که آیا برای کل کشور یا حتی برای یک زوج سالمند فراموش کردن بهتر است یا به یاد آوردن؟
داستان کتاب گیراست و شمارا تا پایان همراه میکند . ایشی گورو با ظرافت تمام ازین غول مدفون که همان
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Parastoo Ashtian
ـ شاید خداوند در مورد کاری که ما انجام دادیم خشمگینه. یا شاید هم خشمگین نیست، بلکه به دلیل کاری که ما کردیم شرمساره.
ـ فکر عجیبیه اما اگر اینطوریه که تو میگی، پس چرا ما رو مجازات نمیکنه؟ چرا کاری میکنه که ما مثل احمق ها کارهایی رو که حتی همین یک ساعت پیش انجام دادیم فراموش کنیم.
ـ شاید خداوند از بابت ما و کاری که ما انجام دادیم چنان شرمساره که میخواد خودش همه چیز رو فراموش کنه و همون طور که اون غریبه گفت، وقتی خداوند چیزی رو به یاد نیاره، جای تعجب نداره که ما هم نمیتونیم چیزی رو به یاد
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Nerds & Encrenque...: The Buried Giant (Ago/2019) 1 12 Aug 01, 2019 07:43AM  
The ending 21 1714 May 06, 2019 11:27AM  

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Sir Kazuo Ishiguro (カズオ・イシグロ or 石黒 一雄), OBE, FRSA, FRSL is a British novelist of Japanese origin and Nobel Laureate in Literature (2017). His family moved to England in 1960. Ishiguro obtained his Bachelor's degree from the University of Kent in 1978 and his Master's from the University of East Anglia's creative writing course in 1980. He became a British citizen in 1982. He now lives in London. ...more
“But then again I wonder if what we feel in our hearts today isn't like these raindrops still falling on us from the soaked leaves above, even though the sky itself long stopped raining. I'm wondering if without our memories, there's nothing for it but for our love to fade and die.” 118 likes
“When it was too late for rescue, it was still early enough for revenge.” 35 likes
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