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In Exile

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  29 ratings  ·  15 reviews
No one in this city has believed in me for two thousand years. I'm unknown and unloved. And I'm very, very ill.' He sighed, and the sound chilled her blood. `Give me your hand.'

Dionysus, god of wine and divine ecstasy, is reborn in modern Rome. He doesn't understand how or why he's come to be here - a pagan god in a city where he has no believers. But when he meets fifteen
Paperback, 320 pages
Published January 24th 2019 by Unbound
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4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  29 ratings  ·  15 reviews

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Jan 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, 2019
3.5 stars

Three fifteen year old girls getting blotto on wine every Friday night; unable to remember any of the details they spend the rest of the weekend nursing their hangovers. Not terribly unusual behaviour except these are English girls living in Rome, in what I assumed to be the 1950s, although it’s not explicitly stated. Oh, and they’ve fallen in with the Greek god Dionysus and their drinking sessions are actually bacchanals.

Dionysus is disdainful and lethargic, not seemingly someone to in
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley-read
Book Review: In Exile
Author: Alexandra Turney
Publisher: Unbound
Publication Date: January 24, 2019
Review Date: January 4, 2019

I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

From the long blurb from Amazon:
“No one in this city has believed in me for two thousand years. I’m unknown and unloved. And I’m very, very ill.” He sighed, and the sound chilled her blood. “Give me your hand.”
Dionysus is re-born in a city which is never named, but which can only be Rome. H
Corinne Sparks
Jan 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book starts as one thing, and swiftly turns into another. And I loved it!
Reading the blurb, I reckoned on a YA cliche of a Greek god coming back to modernity and a teen girl getting all friendly with him
But this is so much more. The author has captured the ennui of the teenage years, where school is boring, and the summers are boring, and life itself feels oppressive, heavy and boring. Our protagonist, Grace, is fifteen and bored. Nothing happens in her town (which we read to be in Greece,
Emi Bevacqua
Jan 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: euro, fantasy
A reincarnated Dionysus living in 20th century Rome is identified by a 15-yr old British expat named Grace, who'd just finished reading The Bacchae for her Classics course. Stereotypical teen Grace is bored and helpless; unable to lose weight, to find romance or self-confidence, or to rise above average in Maths, Chemistry, Physics or PE. But that's not to say she's an underdeveloped character; Grace has artistic interests, a delightfully preposterous family background, and an extraordinary imag ...more
Ivana de B.
Jan 31, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

In her first novel In Exile the author Alexandra Turney throws you into the Eternal city. The city itself is completely overlooked, which I actually rather enjoyed. However, it find the fact that the story seems so timeless quite symbolic because of its setting. The book itself is divided into three parts which are separated very logically. Each of the parts represents the emotions that mainly the protagonist Grace, but also her friends Caroline a
Maximilian Hawker
Feb 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I approach this book from the slightly awkward angle of a 31-year-old bloke reading about expatriate schoolgirls engaging in all manner of shenanigans under unlikely circumstances in Rome. The novel follows our 15-year-old protagonist, Grace, who is bored to buggery with her unfulfilling existence in the Eternal City. Fortunately for her, she has her friends for company: intelligent, attention-seeking Charlotte - the standout character in the book, for me - and forgettable, arch-Catholic Sara - ...more
Cassandra MADEUP BookBlog
Mar 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was such a brilliant change of pace to my usual reads, it was unique and just that bit surprising!!

I love the fact that the teenage attitude is very realistic, the Author has recreated a typical Teen attitude wonderfully, and at the start I was really wondering how Dionysus was going to fit in with that realism, but I loved how the Author handled it! Typical teen who is bored and fed up with life, and of course knows best. So meeting a God, obviously the teens are going to do the whole “I k
Steph Warren
Mar 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
*I received a free ARC of this book with thanks to the author, Unbound, and Anne Cater of Random Things Blog Tours. The decision to review and my opinions are my own.*

Alexandra Turney conjures a haunting nostalgia for the languid boredom of teenage summer holidays, crossed with a darker, more insidious restlessness that can only lead to madness, violence and worse.

The story unsettles on two layers. On the surface we have a mythological fairytale of young girls being led into danger by a shadowy
Jan 25, 2019 rated it liked it
I'm adding this to my "mythology retellings" shelf only because I don't know under which other category I might put this. The cover! And what an amazing idea! Three contemporary teens get involved with the newly awakened god Dionysos, who needs worshippers to sustain his existence - and who better to start a cult than 15-year old Grace, who's just had to read The Bacchae as a summer assignment and is pretty miserable in general?

Disclaimer: This novel is not at all YA, if that's what you think af
miss.mesmerized mesmerized
Jan 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Summer in Italy can be rather boring when all the friends are on holiday with their families. But Grace’s boredom finds an end when she stumbles across an ancient god, Dionysus. Quite naturally she doesn’t believe his story in the beginning, but slowly recognised who or rather: what he really is. When her friends Caroline and Sara return, she tells them about him and they are eager to meet him, too. So is the ancient god and since he has been longing for nymphs to feed him, the three teenagers a ...more
Jan 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This fascinating novel is hard to pin down but can best be described as magical realism. Reading it I was reminded of the work of Angela Carter.
The exile is that of the ancient pagan gods who are no longer worshiped in modern times. Where do they go? The book begins with Dionysus reappearing in a city which is never named but is clearly Rome, not knowing how or why he is here again. He is discovered by Grace, the main character, a 15 year old teenager who is bored with school and her family life
Mar 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: unbound
Slightly unreal and oddly disturbing: this novel plays with the idea of one of the Greek gods waking up in modern day Rome. I'm not sure exactly when it is meant to be set, but the absence of technology and use of vinyl for music suggests the 1960s to me. Grace, Caroline and Sara are bored schoolgirls, looking for something to lighten their boredom: Caroline shoplifts, Sara is religious and Grace doesn't know what she wants until she meets a compelling stranger. The girls have just been studying ...more
Lel Budge
Mar 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: rachels-rr
Grace is bored, it’s Summer in Italy and everyone is on holiday….while wandering she comes across a man, he claims to be Dionysus, an ancient god……somehow here in modern day Rome !!

Obviously she doesn’t believe him….that would be madness…. wouldn’t it?

But she soon changes her mind and soon recognises what he is. Her friends Sara and Caroline return from their holidays and she tells them all about Dionysus……and he is now glad to have these ‘nymphs’ to feed him…

Dionysus is the god of grapes and wi
Liselot Morreels
Feb 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I highly recommend in exile. The story is built up in such a delicate manner and the main characters are greatly worked out that you feel part of the story. The setting of rome, considering that i’ve lived there, was described in such a manner that it made you recognize some things, but it showed it from an untemporary, new and magical side. It’s one of the few books that i read that give me this feeling afterwards that I miss reading it and that I miss the characters and the setting. Normally I ...more
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Feb 03, 2019 rated it liked it
This is an oddly intriguing novel, with some interesting points to make, but with some frankly unbelievable plotting. The Greek god Dionysus is reborn in 20th century Rome, living the life of an itinerant beggar or homeless person, sleeping rough in an abandoned church. He meets Grace, a 15-year-old schoolgirl, and with her 2 friends Caroline and Sara they strike up an unlikely group of worshippers, whose Friday night visits to Dionysus develop into wilder and wilder bacchanalias.

The period in
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Alexandra Turney grew up in London and studied English Literature at the University of Oxford. Her love of Romantic poets (and pasta) inspired her to move to Rome, where she has lived since 2013. She works as an English teacher and freelance writer. In Exile is her first novel.
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