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Aprendre a parlar amb les plantes

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  2,957 ratings  ·  374 reviews
La Paula té quaranta anys, és neonatòloga i està viva. Quan una revelació i una pèrdua sobtada la porten a submergir-se en ella mateixa, emprèn un camí que l’endinsarà en la ràbia, la por, el desig i la reconstrucció personal, i que li despertarà l’instint de supervivència. Desorientada, s’haurà d’enfrontar fins i tot a ella mateixa per reorganitzar una geografía emocional ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published October 1st 2018 by Periscopi
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Average rating 3.88  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,957 ratings  ·  374 reviews


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Abbie | ab_reads
Thank you to @pushkin_press for sending me a free copy of Learning to Talk to Plants by Marta Orriols to review! This one is translated from the Catalan by Mara Faye Lethem, and is a stunning depiction of grief and loss. Although it's a slow-paced, introspective novel, I devoured the whole thing on one sleepy Sunday, hypnotised by Orriols beautiful prose, so smoothly translated by Lethem.
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The premise of the book is a woman dealing with the aftermath of her partner's death. But, outside of one pe
...more
Reading_ Tamishly
"Love and hate sometimes lump together like beads of mercury, and the amalgam exudes a feeling that's heavy and toxic and strangely wistful. That's what's irritating. The yearning despite it all."

DNFed at 55 percent.

The writing is a bit surface level for me considering the themes the story is handling, grief and coping with it primarily.

I got tired of waiting for something to feel, for something for the story to get me connected to the characters or the writing.

However, I liked the first few ch
...more
Melanie
Jun 20, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I read the first line of the synopsis for this one, I knew I had to read this. Paula’s long term boyfriend dies in an accident mere hours after he told her over lunch that was leaving her for another woman. I don’t know what it says about me but I love a book about grief (don’t send the psychiatrist I am well adjusted otherwise). I particularly love grief narratives that remain firmly in the woman’s head as time passes and the grief changes. Paula is a neonatal paediatrician who cares for b ...more
inciminci
Dnf'ing this one. ...more
Louise H  -  ⭐ Life in the Book Lane Reviews ⭐
I loved the synopsis and was looking forward to an angsty, emotional read. Sadly this just didn't work for me. The writing style was too poetical, to full of metaphor and overly descriptive of everything except Paula's actual emotions. I got very detailed and vivid descriptions of everything surrounding her, to the point that it became distracting. But quite a few chapters into the book I had no idea who she was as a person, how she was truly feelings or where the story was heading.


I had no con
...more
Soula Kosti
"A father's pain is different from a mother's and a mother's is different from a sister's, and a woman's pain is different from that of a woman who's just been dumped."

3.5 ✨

In "Learning to Talk to Plants," Paula loses her partner Mauro a few minutes after he announces to her that he leaves her for another woman. After Mauro's accident, Paula is left behind to deal with the aftermath -- her own grief and loss for losing her companion and friend, hers and Mauro's family and friends that are unawar
...more
Rin
Jun 12, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literary-fiction
TW: Loneliness, Grief, Death

This is a psychological fiction. Paula, the main protagonist experiencing many emotions all at once. Mainly she is grieving but along with that comes anger, intrusive thoughts. This story mainly focuses on the character development. Despite the deep assessment on heavy topics this story portrays hope. There are really good relationship portrayals such as friendship and father-daughter relationship.

Thank you Pushkin Press for providing me a digital copy
Queralt✨
Mar 03, 2022 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bc-pick
3.5*

Thoughts to come.
Nawaz Latif
Apr 24, 2022 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5.

It's a story about grief, pain and contemplation yet every sentence is brimming with chaos, beauty and life. An utterly unique book I thoroughly enjoyed reading.
...more
Jantine
May 09, 2021 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
DNF at 76%

Do not get me wrong, this book has some strong points. It dares to focus on emotionally difficult topics, and at points the writing is beautiful in an ethereal way.

That said, it just is not a right fit for me. The beautiful writing does not distract enough from a main character who often is too practical and pragmatic for me to connect to, or to connect her to the emotionally devastating and difficult situation she is in, and the likewise devastated way she reacts. It somehow does not
...more
Timothy Barr
May 11, 2021 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was granted a free copy of this text by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This text was LONG and drawn out with very little character growth. Most of the novel is focused on the introspection and feelings of a main character that I struggled to connect with. This is a translation as well, so the true text may be better written than the choppy translated version I read.
Kimbofo
May 11, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021-reviews
Marta Orriols’ Learning to Talk to Plants is an age-old story about a woman grieving the untimely death of her long-time partner, only there’s a crucial twist — just hours before he dies in a cycling accident, he announces that he is leaving her for someone else.

Paula, the central character, is a neonatologist, a doctor who specialises in the care of newborn babies, particularly those who are ill or born prematurely. She works in a busy hospital in Barcelona and spends more time with her colleag
...more
Sue
I thought the premise of this book was interesting - a couple breaks and then almost immediately one of them dies in an accident. The girlfriend is left in emotional limbo. She's not really a widow since they weren't married. And her boyfriend cheated on her and dumped her hours before his death - which almost no one knows.

I waited and waited and waited for this book to stop being boring. It never did. Also (view spoiler)
...more
Kay-Leigh
Paula is grieving. Sometimes grief comes layered with anger and betrayal.

The first revelation in the book is quite startling but the pace was frustratingly slow. Barely anything actually happens in this story. I'm here for novels centred around character development but this is simply internal dialogue of a person trying to understand how she feels about the loss of her partner.
...more
Lou (nonfiction fiend)
Learning to Talk to Plants is a delicate novel, in which the intensity of an all-shattering loss is outlined with an unprecedented tenderness. In Barcelona, a couple is having lunch in a restaurant: they have been together for twenty years and Paula is about to tell Mauro that she would like to get married and have a child, but before she can speak, he announces that he has another younger woman who he has decided he wants to be with, and, just like that, their relationship and love story are ov ...more
Shelleyrae at Book'd Out

“You said that talking to plants was a private, transformative act, an act of faith for those who don’t believe in miracles. I get up, take a breath, and add to my list: Learn to talk to plants.”

In need of a book for the Books In Translation Reading Challenge, Learning to Talk to Plants caught my attention in the Edelweiss catalogue. This debut won Spanish author Marta Orriols the Omnium Cultural Prize for the best Catalan novel in 2018, and has been skilfully translated into English by Mara Fay
...more
Mandy
Jun 29, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This immersive and moving novel tells the story of Paula, a 40-year-old neonatologist living in Barcelona, whose long-term partner suddenly announces that he is going to leave her and then almost immediately afterwards is killed in a road accident, leaving her to cope with loss and grief on two levels. As she navigates a future without him, the author sensitively and with real insight explores all the complexities and nuances of Paula’s grief in an emotionally honest and compassionate way. True ...more
Brittany (Britt's Book Blurbs)
Thanks to NetGalley and Pushkin Press for an eARC of this book. The following review is my honest reflection on the text provided.

I enjoyed bits and pieces of this story, but it mostly felt like a lot of fluff because the narrative is so introspective and flighty. I kept waiting for the story to start or something to happen, but we just kept floating along with seemingly no purpose.

Learning to Talk to Plants is supposed to be about coming to terms with grief, specifically, grief that is more
...more
Amy
Mar 19, 2022 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
This book got it right. It expressed the complexities of grief in a nuanced and unique way. It felt arduous in the best possible way, everything from the selfishness of grief, to the intrusive thoughts, was perfectly reflected and never forced. I especially loved how at the end the grief continued despite the narrator finding herself once more.
Eva
Dec 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Delicate and intimate. One of the best books I've read in 2018. ...more
Exploshann
It took me a couple of months to finish reading this book as no character nor any part of the plot really grabbed my attention. I read the English translation and was wondering if the Catalan/original version would have made a different impact.

The protagonist is not an easy one to connect with..most of the times I find her being judgmental and condescending to the other characters. She gives off the impression that she’s better than everyone else. Not to say that main characters in books need t
...more
Nic
Oct 02, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The protagonist, Paula, felt a bit too emotionally distant for my taste, but some sentences hit me like a punch to the face. Marta Orriols juggles some very difficult and conflicting emotions, but I wanted it to have just a tad more depth to it. It's grief! Make it visceral! ...more
lauren
Nov 14, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book starts beautifully strong - the cover, the concept, and the first quote from Julian barnes’ Levels of Life had me thinking, damn this will be good.
It was!
The reason it’s not a 5 star is really just because there was nothing super shocking or wow or captivating about the Paula’s healing.
It was beautiful that she found herself feeling again- it seems she had become complacent for quite some time in her life. Nothing like tragedy on multiple levels to awaken your sense of emotion and p
...more
Alex Cleveland
3.5 stars! This book was really lovely and took me through so many emotions. I just felt it was a bit fluffy at times, which did add to the story at certain points, however at others it made it drag on a bit.
Abigail
An unflinching and darkly humorous look at grief in its many forms.
✿ jess ✿
Aug 04, 2022 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, book-fairy
this book was so excellently written, realistically portraying the complexity of grief and finding yourself after your world is completely turned upside down.
Cat
Dec 13, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An almost middle aged woman is suddenly cheated on and widowed. Learning to Talk to Plants follows the aftermath at her work in the NICU ward of a hospital, as she navigates family and community, and of course, her own identity. This sensual, introspective narrative speaks to the conflicted nature of grief and womanhood, and too, the feeling of belonging--both metaphorically, in the life of the protagonist Paula, and too, literally, in Marta Orriols' description of various places in the Catalan ...more
Stella
Apr 25, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Paula’s boyfriend Mauro suddenly announces that he is leaving her for another woman. Then, mere hours later, he dies in a traffic accident.

It is no surprise what kind of a turmoil of emotion that sets off in Paula. Everyone around her is mourning Mauro and trying to console her by saying “He loved you so much”. How can she at this point admit that he had in fact not loved her and had cheated on her with another woman for months? To make matters worse, she is in possession of his phone filled wi
...more
Kokechii
Nov 18, 2021 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This should have been a good read for me (I fell in love with the cover and the title), but... Although the main character has some character lines and points where I really could see myself in them, and the writing is nice, this just sadly bored me in a way I can't describe. Maybe there are things lost in translation. ...more
Janani Chinnam
Jul 02, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc
Thanks to Pushkin Press for an advanced reader’s copy in exchange for an honest review; released on 6/15!

A quiet, candid portrait of grief in all its complexity and weight. Reading about death will always feel “too soon”, I think, both uncomfortable and comfortable at the same time.

"I know that in my tears today hides a little girl sitting in class with the animal kingdom explained on the blackboard, a girl upon whom a crushing weight has fallen again, a weight that's incalculable to those who'v
...more
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Marta Orriols Balaguer (Sabadell, 1975), historiadora de l’art de formació, viu i treballa a Barcelona i té dos fills. En el camp de l’escriptura ha estudiat guió cinematogràfic a l’escola de cinema Bande à Part i escriptura creativa a l’Escola d’Escriptura de l’Ateneu Barcelonès. És autora del blog No puc dormir, treballa ocasionalment com a lectora editorial i ha participat en l’edició del llibr ...more

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