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Confessions

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4.43  ·  Rating details ·  7,458 ratings  ·  973 reviews
At 60, Adrià Ardèvol re-examines his life before his memory is systematically deleted. He recalls a loveless childhood where the family antique business and his father’s study become the centre of his world; where a treasured Storioni violin retains the shadows of a crime committed many years earlier. His mother, a cold, distant and pragmatic woman leaves him to his solita ...more
Hardcover, 754 pages
Published October 15th 2014 by Arcadia Books (first published September 1st 2011)
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David I know it sounds silly but I'd like to believe (based on what the police officer says: look for him even in Tibidabo and the funfair) that Bernat took…moreI know it sounds silly but I'd like to believe (based on what the police officer says: look for him even in Tibidabo and the funfair) that Bernat took him to the funfair where his parents had never taken him. (less)
This question contains spoilers... (view spoiler)
Lygeri Spoiler...... ...γιατι εχω την εντυπωση οτι η Ντορα ισως και ο ιδιος ο Αντρια φρόντισε για το τέλος της Σαρα κατ΄ αντιπαραθεση με το τελος της Ζερτρο…more Spoiler...... ...γιατι εχω την εντυπωση οτι η Ντορα ισως και ο ιδιος ο Αντρια φρόντισε για το τέλος της Σαρα κατ΄ αντιπαραθεση με το τελος της Ζερτρουντ; Οπως επισης θεωρώ οτι ο Μπερναρντ φροντισε για το τελος του Αντριά...(less)
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Average rating 4.43  · 
Rating details
 ·  7,458 ratings  ·  973 reviews


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Χαρά Ζ.
Jul 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-love
**Confessions/Jo confesso/Confiteor**

I have been reading this book and I have been loving it from the first page. I have been reading it slowly, patiently, absorbing its magic, absorbing its art. It's a book that I did not want it to end. This beauty here now belongs to my all time favorites and in the future it will belong to the classics, to the miracles. I don't know how Cabré did this, i don't know how he made it happen, but i know, for sure, that i am forever grateful. This book is an exper
...more
Vit Babenco
Dec 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The present and the past – they are always interlinked…
‘…the history of any thing explains the present state of that thing.’

And following this postulate Jaume Cabré constructs his novel: the history of a man and history of a violin.
Here and now are intertwined with there and then so the past and the present are described simultaneously and often even in the same sentence.
The family secrets, secrets of history and secrets of the world are capriciously interconnected in the unexpected ways and gra
...more
Auguste
Jan 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh my God this book is SO FUCKING AWESOME. I'm almost afraid to read the rest of Cabre's books (which, typically, I've already hoarded - thank God for small, manageable French editions) in case they don't stand up to this masterpiece. I mean, give this guy a Nobel Prize already. ...more
Michał
May 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I must be on a streak of mind-blowingly good novels recently.I can't even begin to describe what the book is about let alone how it is written. Imagine 4 characters, 2 languages, three different ways of narrating (1st person, 3rd person, memoirs)all seamlessly presented on one page. Dialogues intertwine with no clear identification who is speaking or which of many many stories they pertain to. Sounds complex and it definitely is. Multiple plotlines and drastic changes of scenery and characters w ...more
Marc
In this novel we get the personally told story of the older Catalan man Adrià Ardèvol, looking back on his life, and addressed to his beloved Sara. Already after 1 page we read: "do not trust me too much", and that appears to be a valid warning. Because first of all, Adrià's story constantly jumps from one time period to another, and not only about the episodes of his own life: events and characters from the 14th to the 18th century from various places in Spain, Italy and other European countrie ...more
David
Dec 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Confiteor. I confess. Father, I have sinned.

You see, in eight days I read a rather large book. So large in fact it reminded me of the Bible. And in a way it was like the Bible. It had stories within stories that dealt with redemption, because there were a lot of people committing bad things. Perhaps even some moralizing took place.

The whole book focused around a violin, of all things. A violin called Vial. In fact it was a Storioni from Cremona, 1764. It had a dark history. Even a dark present.
...more
Campbell
Jun 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
I've never read anything quite like this, such is its artistry and guile. Like a thief in the night it sneaks then all of a sudden it falls upon you like an avalanche. Truly it is a once in a decade novel, and why it is not world famous is a mystery to me. ...more
Marina Sofia
Jul 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a challenging read - it plays with your mind, with its sudden veering into another story, another point in time, another character - and yet it remains coherent and fun. No small feat!
Elena Papadopoulou
"Evil. Why does your God allow it? He doesn’t keep evil from happening: all he does is punish the evildoer with eternal flames. Why doesn’t he prevent it? Do you have an answer?" ...more
Karīna Liepiņa
The best book I’ve ever red in my life!❤️❤️❤️❤️
Anja
Mar 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
This is the longest love letter i've ever read! - long as the whole life of main character.
This conffesion is interesting on so many levels.. It deals with history (from 13 to 20th century), people who've marked it, question of power and evil, inhumanity.. All of which are connected by music, by violin and it's mysterious origins. The fate of one hides the fate of whole generations...

What story makes even more special, is it's style. The first half of the book is really complex and challenging.
...more
Zaharenia
Aug 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's been a while since I've read a book that made me cry. This great epic made me cry. Absolutely recommended. ...more
Antonio
Mar 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You feel it first at the back of your head. The unscratchable itchiness at the part of your brain which inclines you to look at the bookshelf, and the tomes already read and the (ever increasing) pile on the want-to-read shelf. But there is one which stands above the rest, primus inter pares, a slowly winking, seducing and suggesting look of intrigue. Is this book you read so long ago. One of the masterpieces your literature has birthed to the world to enjoy.

And it finally hits you. The urge, t
...more
Matthias
Jun 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The lifelong quest of Adrià after the nature of evil becomes an epic panorama of the century in which mankind lost its innocence the second time. He becomes another Faust, where the devil has been replaced by history.

This is a complex book, blurring time and space, through language, music, literature, philosophy and art.

For me, this has been the best book read this year so far, in a very good year. I have my doubts it will be topped.

I read the German translation, which I found more vivid throug
...more
Blanca
Aug 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Magistral
Ingrida
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-lt
It's a colossal book, in its volume and amount of characters and the themes that it's trying to tackle, like the nature of evil and weight of evil-doings throughout generations. If you're a minimalist in your philosophy of life, you may find it hard to grasp Adrian's attraction to things and the stories they contain within themselves, but being the hoarder of mementos myself, I could connect with him on that level. The fact that the book revolves around the story of Storioni's violin, reminded m ...more
Vic Van
Aug 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the sort of book that leaves me with the feeling: Did I really grasp what it was all about? Did I miss something?
All this to say that this is not a straightforward story. It jumps from one timeframe to another. New characters are introduced that leave you wondering: what part do they play in the whole of this story? However, in the end everything eventually sort of makes sense, but I really had to persevere at times.

What definitely appealed to me were the various stories inside the sto
...more
Ana-Maria Bujor
Aug 28, 2022 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I really appreciate what this book set out to do. It's definitely unlike anything else I've read. And not in a bad way.
While it confused me at first, I soon got into the mixture of times, characters and stories, even as the story changed mid-sentence. It's challenging and keeps you alert.
However this massive tome is not even in terms of quality. I found the first part, regarding child Adria to be very strong. I felt for him and found myself loving to hate his parents. The whole first part is v
...more
Giedrė
This is a hell of a story! Gorgeous, touching, exhilarating, maddening.

The first 70 pages feel slow-paced and a little confusing so the remaining 700 pages might seem almost invincible. But then it's like a deep dive where one needs to stop, slow down and breath in to apprehend where everything is and how round or flat is Earth at the moment. On around page 500, I already started feeling sorry that the book is coming to an end.

The novel is written as a memoir of a man who's lived his life and i
...more
Dijana
I love reading. I have read many great, beautifully written, unforgettable books. But sometimes a book comes along that makes you think THIS is why I love reading. A book that leaves you with your mouth hanging open in awe and with the knowledge that you have had the pleasure of reading a true masterpiece.
This is the most complex and remarkable book that I have ever read. It is not an easy read. It requires your attention and patience to grasp all the stories interwoven in this book that span ce
...more
Jkk
Feb 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
One of the best books I've ever read. A masterpiece. Truly outstanding. ...more
Nancy Papavasileiou-beckenbach
A magnificent piece of work, both for its content and its unique writing style. I can't even count the number of times I stopped reading just to have a moment and take in the brilliance of the passage that had just passed before my eyes. ...more
Leda
Dec 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
fuuuck this is why I love literature. I've never read anything like this before 🖤🖤
...more
Marian Tsepeli
May 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jo Confesso is a book by the Catalan writer Jaume Cabre, a celebrated novel which caused ripples of fascination both due to its form and its content. It is difficult to classify as it combines the form of the confessional autobiography/memoir, the intertextuality and self-referentiality of a post-modern novel , it is original in the way it introduces and develops its characters, it reveals its subject matter in a detective, sort of whodunit way. For the sake of the review, however, I will make a ...more
Jackie Law
Nov 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Confessions, by Jaume Cabré, is massive in size, scope and literary merit. Given its reach it is hard to classify: a love story, a treatise on evil, the story of a life. Translated from the original Catalan by Mara Faye Letham, the tale has a depth that demands the reader’s full attention. Compelling as the interwoven strands of the story are, it deserves regular pauses for contemplation and for the quality of the writing to be savoured.

The book introduces us to Adrià Ardèvol, a gifted and preco
...more
Marina Khaustova
Oct 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
One of the secondary characters once says "What a man! Happy, sad - doesn't matter, he always cries!"
No mystery. No twists.
Just a story of a person who constantly reveals that he is nothing but a part of some other story or plot happening in other times, another country, another family.
A chronic habit of frustration because of realized need to act following some higher idea without devoting enough time to who you really are. Failing, of course. Losing a call that you thought you've been hearing
...more
Ashley Arguello
Aug 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
[[[ CAPTIVATING READ ]]]

I know two things for sure; first, this book is a masterpiece. I have seldom enjoyed reading a book more than I did this one. The second thing I can say with a decent amount of certainty is that this book is absolutely captivating.

As for the rest, I struggle to find adequate words as I desperately try to succinctly explain the genius that the author puts in each one of these 800 pages. Because Confessions is several stories at once/ in one, it is also a book about several
...more
Ania (double.bookspresso)
4 stars for Cabré. It would probably be 5 if I had read 'Jo confesso' before some other books. But, to be honest, I found almost nothing new in this extraordinary plot construction. Family saga? Not only family saga? Mixed stories starting on page 10 and having an ending at page 400 or not having it at all? That reminds me of J.S. Foer's 'Everything is illuminated'. Language games? I have that in Marias's prose. Ok, maybe Cabré's language games are of the languages themselves and Marias plays wi ...more
Shalini
Dec 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This was a sumptuous read over many late nights curled up on the sofa with full bodied reds for company. Cabré is a master story teller who skilfully weaves medieval and modern history with intelligence and sophistication. Who better to tell the tale of European history than Adrià Ardevol, a linguist who can shift between 13 languages seamlessly. It is also a book about books, authors and philosophers, and one that I plan to re-read.
Translations are intrinsically problematic and this one is no e
...more
Andrey Pogorelov
May 18, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020
“Confessions” by Jaume Cabré

DNF. It’s always quite risky to start a new translated book (in Russian at least) - every other one ends up to be a disappointment. Just like “Confessions” here. Maybe the original text is beautiful and magical, like everyone on here has been saying, but the Russian translation is abysmal, unreadable and sad.

Apart from that, after the first 100 pages I never felt emotionally involved in the story. The narrative is all over the place, jumping between a few main plot li
...more
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What's the Name o...: SOLVED. Adult Fiction, Spanish translation, post Spanish civil war? [s] 8 303 Feb 03, 2020 01:04AM  
discussion group 2 49 Jul 12, 2017 11:58PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Duplicate 5 36 Nov 10, 2016 12:44PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Wrong title when adding new edition 2 23 Aug 06, 2016 08:31AM  
Simply beautiul. 1 39 Nov 02, 2013 01:33PM  

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Jaume Cabré i Fabré (Barcelona, 1947) is a philologist and Catalan writer.

Graduated in Catalan Philology by the University of Barcelona, high-school professor in leave of absence and teacher to the University of Lleida, member of the Philological Section of the Institut d'Estudis Catalans.

During many years he has combined literary writing with teaching. He has also worked in the television and cin
...more

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