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The Glittering World

3.22  ·  Rating details ·  1,064 ratings  ·  289 reviews
In the tradition of Neil Gaiman (The Ocean at the End of the Lane), Scott Smith (The Ruins), and Jason Mott (The Returned), award-winning playwright Robert Levy spins a dark tale of alienation and belonging, the familiar and the surreal, family secrets and the search for truth in his debut supernatural thriller.

When up-and-coming chef Michael “Blue” Whitley returns with th
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published February 10th 2015 by Gallery Books
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Average rating 3.22  · 
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 ·  1,064 ratings  ·  289 reviews

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Jan 09, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015, arc-reviews, fiction
A group of four friends travel from New York City to Cape Breton Island to oversee the sale of a home in beautiful Starling Cove. Blue, the man who inherited the property following his grandmother’s death, needs the cash to pay off some shady mobsters who had funded his expanding restaurant in Brooklyn. Originally from Cape Breton but having left at a young age, Blue barely recalls his home town outside of a few fleeting memories. All that changes when he visits his grandmother’s home and vision ...more
Althea Ann
Sep 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
Imagine: Kelly Link's "The Summer People" meets Elizabeth Hand's "Last Summer at Mars Hill" with a bit of the 'feel' of Graham Joyce (especially 'Some Kind of Fairytale').

If you haven't read those other stories, go read them now. But read this book too.

Blue is a young New York City restaurateur. Recently, the grandmother he never knew passed away, leaving him a cottage in the small community where he lived as a child. All he knows is that his mother left the place - some kind of hippie commune
Jenny (Reading Envy)
I almost bailed on this one, not because of the fairy elements, which has been enough of a reason for previous bailings, but because the writing is so clunky at the beginning. Here's an example:
"Elisa settled on her sit bones in the passenger seat. She whipped out her vintage Konica—her constant companion of late—and shot a picture of her husband behind the wheel. Jason bopped his head and tapped his square, well-manicured nails....
I kept scowling at the page thinking, really, she settled on her
Elyse  Walters
Jan 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
I think I have a 'Love/hate' relationship with "The Glittering World". I basically haven't slept because I was completely swept away in the world of fantasy-fiction last night with Robert Levy's storytelling.

I read approx. 15 percent of this story early Sat. morning --then didn't return reading until approx. 10pm that night, (then never stopped until I finished it early this morning)
I immediately sent my friend an e-mail, saying In was 'mad'. How could this novel end the way it did without havin
Feb 10, 2015 added it
Shelves: marion-book-club
Congratulations, Glittering World! You have the dubious honor of being the first DNF I've ever listed on GoodReads! I got maybe halfway and skimmed the rest. What makes it worse is that I picked this for book club, and now I don't know if I can show my face there again (Sorry, guys. If I show up at dinner with a bag over my head, you know why).

So why did I choose it? I don't know. The premise and genre-blending sounded interesting. Reviews were promising. And okay, the blurbs! I should really, r
Talk Supe
Feb 21, 2015 added it
Shelves: 2015
I can't rate this because I don't know wtf I just read. It's a changeling story, it's creepy, atrocious on certain parts, and told in an alien-abduction kind of way. The style is very literary fiction, suspenseful and mysterious. This is jut one strange cookie.
Sep 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Robert Levy's The Glittering World is that rare and wonderful kind of book that takes something old and makes it new again. Like those who disappear into the woods in this novel, once you step into these lush and mysterious pages, be prepared to return to your own world altered.
Frank Errington
Feb 28, 2015 rated it liked it
Review copy

There is a lot to like about Robert Levy's debut novel. There's the seemingly idyllic location of Starling Cove in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, the writer's strong character development, and frequently stunning prose, to name a few.

The Glittering World is the story of Michael "Blue" Whitley and his closest friends, Elisa and her husband Jeremy, & Blue's young and admiring co-worker, Gabe, who all travel from NYC, to the place of his birth, essentially to facilitate the sale of his late g
Dec 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Clever, different, creepy, adult, and difficult in the right ways. A very impressive debut!
Nov 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
Robert Levy’s debut novel is a difficult one to classify. Billed by the publisher as a supernatural thriller (which it unequivocally is), it also sporadically plunges headlong into contemporary fantasy, mystery, fairy tale, and what could be described as rural noir. There’s much going on here, but it works, and at its core The Glittering World is really a love story that’s fantastic in every sense of the word.

Michael Whitley (also known as Blue) and three close friends have left New York to go a
Mar 05, 2015 rated it it was ok
This had such a promising start, but it just never delivered for me. I didn't care even slightly about any of the characters. The writing was totally bizarre--the metaphors were genuinely often distracting, and would jar me out of the narrative. But the thing, I think, that really killed it for me was that all of these characters are in thrall to "The Other Kind" for reasons that I just never felt. The way The Other Kind are described is unremittingly disgusting, and we are told repeatedly that ...more
Jack Haringa
Nov 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, horror
Robert Levy's luminescent debut novel defies easy categorization. It possesses elements of contemporary fantasy, but it's never twee; it has horrific moments, but they are always tinged with wonder; it contains mysteries, but they are more Dionysian than cozy or hard-boiled. Levy deftly straddles the realistic and fantastical realms, offering psychological authenticity to his diverse characters and a transcendental sense of the Romantic sublime to the world they inhabit. His prose is effulgent-- ...more
Jan 09, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015, kobo
When I saw that the blurb for the Glittering World compared it to Neil Gaiman, I knew I wanted to read it. Neil Gaiman is amazing. I adore everything of his that I have ever read and I adore him. I may have a wee bit of a fan girl crush on him…. HOWEVER, that is not the point of this post. This is about The Glittering World by Robert Levy. Which, so far, is a good book; quite good in fact.

When I requested a copy of this book, I didn’t know anything about it, other than its comparison to Neil Ga
Feb 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs, netgalley, fae
The Glittering World is a book with a very different take on the fae. I could go on for hours about the uniqueness of the author's vision, but I think that's better discovered by the reader.

What I will say however, is that I found the method Levy chose to use to communicate the story extremely interesting. Told from the point of view of four different protagonists, you'll find yourself wondering whose story is it really? How is it possible to really tell?

Arguably, Blue goes through the largest
Dan Poblocki
Oct 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebook, books-i-own
A damn cool novel. Scarier than advertised! Very interesting to discover that the book is divided into 4 parts of totally equal measure. 4 different POVs. Makes the story even more mysterious...

Strange thing: I finished reading this book at a cafe in my neighborhood and then looked up the author on FB. One of the first pics is of the author standing in the same cafe about 4 feet from where I'm currently sitting.
M Griffin
Dec 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A very engaging, character-focused story that hooked me right from the beginning. There are four main characters -- Blue, Jason, Elisa and Gabriel -- and about a quarter of the book follows the perspective of each. The Glittering World is the first thing I've read by Robert Levy, and I enjoyed it so much I'll definitely seek out his work in the future.
Feb 01, 2015 rated it liked it
I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. The marketing compared it to Neil Gaiman, so I was intrigued. I can see where the comparison comes in for sure. It's a modern-day fantasy in which an ex-club-kid turned chef returns to his roots only to discover that he is not the person he's always thought himself to be.

I wasn't really sure what to expect, since the author was unknown to me, and urban fantasy isn't typically my thing. Robert Levy is, luckily, a skilled write
Jan 31, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaways, fantasy
The first half of The Glittering World was a lovefest for me, I was devouring it. Number one, it has a road trip. Blue has inherited a house in Cape Breton from his grandmother. Against his mother's wishes, he and three friends head to Nova Scotia for a look at the place before the sale is finalized. Number two, in chronological order, the narrator shifts from one main character to the next. This was an interesting literary device that worked well. Three, and this was the most exciting thing, th ...more
Sep 23, 2014 rated it liked it
When a publishing house decides to market a book - and it often seems to happen with debut novelists - by comparing it to the works of well known and beloved authors, I have a tendency to cross my arms and stamp my foot and declare a general intolerance for such buffoonery.

And... I tend to fall for it pretty much every time. Which is, of course, what the marketing department is hoping for. When Gallery Books offered Robert Levy's new novel, The Glittering World up for early review with the claim
Jan 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Chef, Michael Whitley--known to his friends as Blue, inherits his grandmother’s cottage in a bucolic community in Nova Scotia. His friends Elisa, Jason and Gabe accompany him to Starling Cove in the Cape Breton area to see the house one last time before Blue signs off on the sale of the property.
The community of free-thinking, aging hippies and artists warmly welcome the New Yorkers. As
Feb 01, 2015 rated it liked it
2.5 stars. I requested/downloaded this book from because of its comparison to Neil Gaiman's The Ocean at the End of the Lane, which I loved. This book had some of the fairy tale aspects of Gaiman's but didn't really live up to the comparison.

The story revolves around Blue and his friend Elisa, her husband Jason, and Blue's puppyish hanger-on, Gabe. Travelling to Nova Scotia for Blue to sell his dead grandmother's house and take a little vacation, Blue begins to uncover hazy memori
Oct 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
I received an e-copy of this book from net galley.

I loved this book, at first I was worried because I thought that the plot was moving too fast. However, this was just me guessing at where I thought the book would go, but I was wrong.

I found all of the characters enthralling, none of them seemed to have bad points, yet I found myself loving them all. There aren't too many characters within the book, so it feels self-contained, and it really adds to the feel of the book. The atmosphere of the n
Brittany (Brittany's Book Rambles)
2.5/5 Stars

Thank you Netgalley and Gallery Books for my ebook copy of this book.

Although I think that this book has a decent writing style, I found it to be trippy and unsatisfying. The plot itself is unique and it held my attention but the details were too psychedelic for me to fully understand anything. "The Other Kind" are described to be like huge Praying Mantis' that can take the form of people but I can't say I have a full understanding as to what they are or what their purpose was exactl
Feb 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Fairies are the dullest of supernatural creatures. Pale, haughty supermodels who are soo above it all. Levy makes them stranger and creepier and more interesting, though they're still pretty haughty. Told in turns by the four main characters, this is a pensive tale about The Other Kind and the people who can't resist their allure. I really enjoyed the fascinating first half of the novel, where the characters explore an old hippie commune in Nova Scotia. This part is told by the enigmatic Blue, w ...more
Rebecca McNutt
I don't understand why this book has such low ratings!

Maybe I'm a little biased since I'm a long-time resident of Nova Scotia and Cape Breton is my favorite place in the world, so this book brought back a lot of memories of childhood nostalgia, those wonderful times in the backseat of my parents' van while we drove to beaches, green fields, the steel mill museum and North Sydney, those days when I still thought that life would always be one perpetually glorious, yellow-tinted Kodak moment... but
Sep 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I adored this book. It's compelling, wonderfully written, and ingeniously plotted. I'm a sucker for a well-done shift in point of view and it's masterful here. Most importantly (at least for holding my interest), I immediately wanted to be friends with these characters. A great story on so many levels. Enthusiastically recommended!
Jan 08, 2015 rated it liked it
*Thank you to Gallery for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.*

Don't mind my review... I haven't actually gotten it yet but I didn't want to have it as 'unread' anymore. I'll review it for real as soon as I get it :)
update: I'll get it June! yay
Jul 27, 2016 rated it it was ok
This one started out really strong but grew steadily worse until I was just skim reading to the finish. Unlikeable people doing horrible things and making stupid decisions. I will say that the characters were well crafted, but like good actors in a bad movie there wasn't much for them to do.
Jan 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
I got a copy of this book to review through NetGalley. I am going to be completely honest here, the only reason I read the synopsis for this book and subsequently request it for review was because I though the cover was absolutely gorgeous. It ended up being an interesting read that reminded me a lot of Elizabeth Hands stories (Waking the Moon, Blacklight).

Michael “Blue” Whitley returns to his home village of Starling Cove, a remote town in Canada to sell his grandmother’s house. He is a success
Jan 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Trinitytwo's Point of View

The Glittering World is an intelligent supernatural thriller that kept me riveted to its pages. Michael Whitley or Blue, as he’s called by friends, is off to Canada to sell the house left to him by his grandmother, a woman he hasn’t seen or heard from since he was five years old. Due to some desperate financial difficulties pertaining to his restaurant in New York, Blue is eager to sign the legal papers, but he wants to see the old place first hoping to stir up the lost
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ROBERT LEVY is an author of unsettling stories and plays whose work has been seen Off-Broadway. A Harvard graduate subsequently trained as a forensic psychologist, his work has been called "frank and funny" (Time Magazine), "idiosyncratic and disarming" (The New York Times), "ambitious and clever" (Variety), "smart" (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction) and "bloody brave" (the UK's SFX Magaz ...more

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