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Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  4,017 Ratings  ·  178 Reviews

Renowned for her poetry, Sylvia Plath was also a brilliant writer of prose. This collection of short stories, essays, and diary excerpts highlights her fierce concentration on craft, the vitality of her intelligence, and the yearnings of her imagination. Featuring an introduction by Plath's husband, the late British poet Ted Hughes, these writings also reflect themes and i

Kindle Edition, 352 pages
Published November 15th 2016 by Harper Perennial (first published 1977)
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Steven  Godin
Jun 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
"Every day from nine to five I sit at my desk facing the door of the office and type up other people’s dreams. Not just dreams. That wouldn’t be practical enough for my bosses. I also type up people’s daytime complaints: trouble with mother, trouble with father, trouble with the bottle, the bed, the headache that bangs home and blacks out the sweet world for no known reason. Nobody comes to our office unless they have troubles. Troubles that can’t be pinpointed"

My second Plath in a week, but thi
Jun 24, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Katie
Oh, Sylvia. Thank you for showing me that talent isn't the same thing as genius, and how some people have to struggle for the former until they fall into the latter. And how is it that you were just as effective at throwing me headlong into writing now, at 24, as you were at 15 when I had never before tried? I'm sad to put you down, but this is the last work of yours there is for me to read in the world. Now, more than ever, I wish you hadn't put your pretty little head in that oven. I want more ...more
Dec 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ted Hughes warned in the introduction “This collection does not represent the prose of the poet of Ariel, any more than the poems of the Colossus represent the poetry of the poet of Ariel” and of course he was right (after all he did know Sylvia better than you and me)

This collection of short stories is a slap to everyone who considers Sylvia Plath just a great poet. Here she proves that she is capable and extremely talented at writing something other than poems. The writing is so unique
Jun 11, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: friends with everybody
Recommended to Mariel by: sisters with everybody
Maybe a mouse gets to thinking pretty early on how the whole world is run by these enormous feet. Well, from where I sit, I figure the world is run by one thing and one thing only. Panic with a dog-face, devil-face, hag-face, whore-face, panic in capital letters with no face at all- it's the same Johnny Panic, awake or asleep.

Dream by dream, thief by crook into the book. While I sneak onto goodreads to read an update or two before the creepy turtle that plagues me figures out he has something to
Reviewing this collection of posthumously published ephemera in 1979, Margaret Atwood called Johnny Panic "a minor work by a major writer." Unfortunately, that perception has stuck for nearly thirty years now, leading to the rather unfortunate conclusion that Plath was less than successful in her attempts at the short story. That presumption does a real disservice to the stories in this collection, which by any other standard than the towering accomplishments of Plath's own poetry, are accomplis ...more
Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams is a wide collection of Sylvia Plaths short stories and a few of her personal diary entries. My reading experience of it was quite the roller coaster, it has stories I absolutely adored, paragraphs that I read dozens of times and will read in the future, but most of the pieces were simply okay. Brilliantly written, yes, they just didnt make feel much and some went way over my head - I couldnt figure out what was the point of them. The stories started to feel ...more
Feb 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love the title story; it is by far my favorite. I just love how I feel like I'm tagging along silently next to her as she works in the medical office. Her words just roll off of the page here, and I can feel all of the hard work she put into making her descriptions perfect. I also feel immense envy, as I wish I'd written the story myself, so painfully real are her descriptions of her waking life.
Next up, I admire 'The Comparison' for its concise description of the differences between a novel
Dustyn Hessie
I am sad to hear that people think “The Bell Jar” is a better work of art than this collection of short stories, calling it “lackluster” and “mediocre.” I think people read Plath’s short stories incorrectly. You have to really read into them in order to really grasp these stories. Not all of these stories are amazing, but some are incredibly unique, unlike any of the other short stories I’ve ever read. “The Bell Jar” was a fair piece of work, but there are plenty of authors who have exceeded her ...more
As a huge Sylvia Plath fan, this book was interesting to me for a multitude of reasons. Several of the stories, especially the title story, are fantastic stand-alone short stories without any previous knowledge of Plath's work. However, for me, the really interesting part of this was reading some shorter works and seeing themes and motifs that come up in her poetry and The Bell Jar, such as numerous references to Lazarus. Lady Lazarus is a masterpiece and one of, like, three poems that I can act ...more
Paula Bardell-Hedley
Collaborative Book-Blogging

I enjoy taking part in book blogging jollies, but seldom find time to give them my wholehearted commitment. This year alone there have been tempting readathons and readalongs for Iris Murdoch, Muriel Spark, Agatha Christie and Persephone Books, to name but a sprinkling. Sad to say, I haven’t signed up for any – until now.

I recently spotted a post about the forthcoming 1977 Club; an event hosted jointly by Kaggsy’s Bookish Ramblings and Stuck in a Book from the 16th-22n
Jan 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ignore the hideous, 90s, "multicultural" cover applied to this text in an effort to make classic female authors hip. Hard as it is, pull your eyes away from the horror.

Instead, focus on the meticulous, suffocating power of Ms. Plath's prose. Her poetry in Ariel and The Colossus and Other Poems evokes images of women scorned, scorched, and yet lulled into complacency and love by their micro-worlds.

The same is true here, but it's spelled out for you, in shocking detail. Plath gets you nice and c
bazı öyküleri iyi, bazıları kötü. plath'i yakından tanımak istiyorsanız, güncesinde bahsettiği bazı olayları öyküye nasıl dönüştürdüğünü merak ediyorsanız okunabilir.
Nov 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I just re-read this book. It was my first foray into Sylvia Plath and totally got me hooked. Although her topics are ordinary, it's the way she writes about them. I feel like we learn so much about her through her characters and storylines. I really enjoy her unique way of looking at ordinary things. It was definitely a memorable read.
Roxana Dreptu
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As haunting as ever, even if in short installments, Sylvia goes out to reach me in unfathomable ways.
Eve Kay
Nov 19, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I started and finished this monster collection of short stories with the title story, and ultimately one of my favourite short stories of all time, Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams. To describe it in mere words is obscure. Words are not enough. You need a whole heap of feeling, thought and passion, over anything else, passion. All that is Plath's masterful talent of penmanship comes to life in this story: The use of language, the enfolding of a world of dreams, it's connection to all that is ...more
Mercedé Khodadadi
داستان دوم (برف) را كمتر از داستان اول (جانی پنیک) دوست داشتم. سیلویا پلات که خود در طول زندگی ۳۰ سالهاش با افسردگی دست و پنجه نرم میکرد و دست آخر به همین دلیل به زندگی خود پایان داد، چند بار در بخش بیماران روانی بستری شده و دلیل پردازش خوب این داستان، هر چند فضای خیالی انتهایش، به همین سبب است. دوستانی که علاقهمند به سایر آثار منثور سیلویا پلات هستند، از خواندن "حباب شیشه" (The Bell Jar) غفلت نورزند. ...more
Jun 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sylvia Plath is an amazing writer. Her poems are sometimes too chilling so I take enjoyment in her prose. Just because she writes in prose doesn't mean she is blunted. Her short stories are fierce, tense, and tautly wrapped up with memorable characters and unpredictable plots. My favorite would have to be the Johnny Panic story, of course, it was an ending that I could not ever forget. Even many years later, I still sometimes think to myself the last lines of that story and let myself savor the ...more
Parmiss Ehteshami
در سال جدید به نظرم باید برای کتاب ها نقد نوشت. نظر یه رویکرد جدید یه توضیح کوتاه راجع به کتاب میدم. کتاب به شدت به علاقمندان به روانکاوی به خصوص بخش مرتبط با خواب توصیه میشه. جانی پنیک شخصیت خداگونه ایه که کنترل سرزمین رویاها رو به دست داره و در حالت افراطی تبدیل به قدیسه یا به عبارتی منجی برای نویسنده میشه. داستان دوم به نام برف بسیار مینیمال در عین حال چالش برانگیز و جذابه. کتاب بیشتر از ۱ ساعت وقت از شما نخواهد گرفت اما لذت مطالعه اون تا روزها با شما خواهد ماند.
Jul 18, 2009 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I'm obsessed.
Short. Intense. Moody.
Aug 17, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fucking Ted Hughes, man. The dick writes an introduction to this collection about how hard writing was for her and how bad she was at it. He takes his intimate knowledge of Plath's ideas and insecurities and uses it to criticize her work.

I'm not a literary scholar. I'm not a writer with a clear, developed sense about the purpose of a short story or what makes one "good." But I have read a lot. He calls one section the "more successful short stories and prose pieces," and then the other section
Apr 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: l-like-library
Each of these stories are incredibly powerful in their own way and Sylvia Plath continues to amaze me with her writing, her mindset and just everything.
Mar 25, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Las primeras historias no son precisamente mis favoritas, pero ya casi hacia la mitad y final del libro hay relatos atrapantes.
Jakob Hessius
Did anyone say "Shutter Island?" Det här är en novell man bör läsa flera gånger för att verkligen förstå hela innebörden av historien. Blir mer begriplig andra läsningen!
Rachel Stevenson
It’s been over twenty years since I read the Bell Jar, Arial, and Bitter Fame, so I can read this book as it what it is, essentially a collection of short stories. Curated by Ted Hughes, the pieces don’t follow a chronological order, so you can’t follow Plath's progression as a writer, but instead they are sorted into More Successful Stories, Other Stories, Notebook (nothing too damning about Mr Hughes), and juvenilia. So you start off with stories that are wonderful: the title story is a horror ...more
Sharn Dhah
I wanted to disregard the introduction by Ted Hughes, to mistrust his evaluation of his late wife's prose writing, his estimation that short story writing was her greatest professional challenge, and that she was dismayed at her own attempts. At odds with herself, she is determined to write objectively yet ends up writing mostly thinly-veiled autobiographic stories. Hughes is absolutely correct in his analysis, however. Her journal excerpts written about acquaintances can be cruel and judgmental ...more
Crisa Valadez
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aman Mittal
Dec 16, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Being endured by an obsession with Sylvia Plath, I had waited too long to get my hands on this book. This is book is interesting for a multitude of reasons. The main reason being it’s Sylvia Plath’s proses, not poems. Previously, I have read The Bell Jar and her Journals, and certainly I was more fascinated by her journals rather her only novel.

This collection of her proses, short stories and a few pieces from Cambridge notes which were sad but also enthralling, written in time and some publish
Kim Kimselius
Mar 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Johnny Panic och Drömbiblen fångar direkt med sitt härliga språk. Det är en kort novell som bara tar 40 minuter att lyssna på, men det är mycket givande minuter.

Berättarjaget i Sylvia Plaths novell Johnny Panic och drömbibeln arbetar som sekreterare på ett sjukhus. Hon ägnar dagarna åt att renskriva patienternas drömmar, men för i hemlighet in dem i sin drömbibel varje kväll, på uppdrag av den store drömskaparen Johnny Panic. Plath skrev den mörka och suggestiva berättelsen efter att ha ar betat
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  • Sylvia Plath: Method and Madness
  • Bitter Fame: A Life of Sylvia Plath
  • Her Husband: Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath - A Marriage
  • Wintering: A Novel of Sylvia Plath
  • Ariel's Gift: Ted Hughes, Sylvia Plath, and the Story of Birthday Letters
  • The Death and Life of Sylvia Plath
  • The Haunting of Sylvia Plath
  • The Silent Woman: Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes
  • Rough Magic: A Biography of Sylvia Plath
  • Collages
  • Mad Girl's Love Song: Sylvia Plath and Life Before Ted
  • When Angels Speak of Love
  • Lover of Unreason: Assia Wevill, Sylvia Plath's Rival and Ted Hughes' Doomed Love
  • Giving Up: The Last Days of Sylvia Plath
  • Julia and the Bazooka and Other Stories
  • Anne Sexton: A Self-Portrait in Letters
  • Birthday Letters
  • The Last Hieroglyph
Sylvia Plath was an American poet, novelist, and short story writer.

Known primarily for her poetry, Plath also wrote a semi-autobiographical novel, The Bell Jar, under the pseudonym Victoria Lucas. The book's protagonist, Esther Greenwood, is a bright, ambitious student at Smith College who begins to experience a mental breakdown while interning for a fashion magazine in New York. The plot paralle
“So many people are shut up tight inside themselves like boxes, yet they would open up, unfolding quite wonderfully, if only you were interested in them."

“Wear your heart on your skin in this life.” 255 likes
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