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Seven Moves

3.55  ·  Rating details ·  199 ratings  ·  30 reviews
Christine Snow, a successful Chicago therapist, sets out to find her vanished lover, the sultry and elusive travel photographer Taylor Hayes. Forging a trail that leads into the heart of Morocco, Seven Moves tracks Christine's gradual recognition that no one can ever really know another's soul. Bearing Anshaw's trademark style -funny, hip, and laser-sharp -this is "a tight ...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published November 14th 1997 by Mariner Books (first published January 1st 1988)
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Average rating 3.55  · 
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 ·  199 ratings  ·  30 reviews

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Mar 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
There are a few authors whose work has so touched or moved or awed me that I have this tendency to hang onto their works, unread, saving them like some literary squirrel might hoard the very best nuts. Anshaw won her place in this group with her first novel, _Aquamarine_, and that, sadly, explains why it is 2017 and I have only just now cracked open the vintage 1996 nut that is her second novel, _Seven Moves_.

While the public's reviews for this book are not quite as glowing as for _Aquamarine_,
Manik Sukoco
Dec 24, 2015 rated it it was ok
I really enjoyed aquamarine so I figured that this book would be just as good. Unfortunately, it wasn't.
First of all, Carol Ashnaw writes in a present tense. That got on my nerves a little bit but I learned to put it aside. Second, the book is whiny, everything Christine goes through is so melodramatic. She seems like a sad excise for a human being. I thought the concept would be good but it just isn't. I don't identify with Christine and I don't sympathize with her.
Ashnaw tends to jump around a
Cassandra Greenwald
Jun 27, 2013 rated it liked it
At first I thought Seven Moves wasn't a strong as Carol Anshaw's other novels (Carry the One being a true powerhouse), but then I found myself going back in my mind to the tiny turns of phrase and human details. I started to feel sad that I wasn't still reading it. I read it once already a few years ago but couldn't quite remember the twists and turns of the plot, but I did remember a lot of the great details (some are so haunting). The moment when you discover the title's meaning is truly a gre ...more
Nov 02, 2008 rated it it was ok
Sloow slow slow slow slow. I expected more after loving "Aquamarine. For someone who loves texture it seems excruxiatingly detailed. I think it would have been a great short story and held greater depth and intensity with a dash more brevity. ...more
Sarah Rigg
Sep 12, 2022 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbtq
Anshaw is, no doubt, a writer to watch. This is the third of her books I've read. I read "Aquamarine" in college and read "Carry the One" back in 2018. I enjoyed both of those. The writing in "Seven Moves" is really gorgeous, and the character development is excellent. I just felt the novel was a bit "slight". It's literally only a little over 200 pages, but not a whole lot happens, except in the main character, Chris's, head. Chris has never really felt solid and safe with her lover Taylor, but ...more
Thomas Cooney
May 21, 2021 rated it really liked it
I've taught Anshaw's brilliant short story, "Hammam" for over 20 years at the college level. This is my first foray into one of her novels and though there is a bit of a drag in the middle (strangely enough, for me, in the exotic Morocco sections), there are so many moments of acute observations and brilliant writing that, to coin an oft-used phrase, attention must be paid:

"She was traveling with her parents, was young and deeply naive. Their affair was as silly and inconsequential as an Astaire
Mar 06, 2021 rated it it was ok
This story concerns the changes in Chris’ life that occur as a result of her female lover and companion of four years disappearing leaving no indication of where she has gone or why she left. Chris is a therapist but her occupation does not enable her to handle this desertion any better than anyone else. The book contains some interesting characters but in my mind they are not enough to salvage this very sad story about how little we really know each other.

Apr 20, 2020 rated it liked it
A bit of a letdown. At the beginning I would have given this 4 stars, but everything happens at a remove, as if Chris and Taylor were clients being written up in Chris's case notes. Anshaw's lovely sentences are present in their humour and balance and appropriateness to each character, and I love the dog Bud, but even the epigraph by John Prine couldn't complete this one. ...more
Jamie Zaccaria
Jun 27, 2018 rated it it was ok
This book was dissapointing. I always want to support LGBT+ writers and stories but this one left much to be desired. I felt like it was a bunch of rambling with no actual plot or character development. I got to the end and thought, what was the point of this?

Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
Not my cup of tea.
Sue Online
Jan 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
A well written story, and yet... have you ever sat in a high-end coffee shop or restaurant and overheard a story at a nearby table? You spend your time listening into someone else's drama, intrigued and yet without commitment: you will never see this person again so you aren't emotionally involved in their tale of woe and insanity. That's how I felt reading Seven Moves. I never emotionally invested in the main character, Chris, but rather, in the story itself. I wanted to know how the story ende ...more
Apr 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
Call me crazy but there are some books I have to read and read again. Seven Moves is one. I’ve tried to figure out the hold it has on me because it’s true that the main character, Christine, is stuck and doesn’t seem able to free herself. Her lover’s disappearance condemns her to a limbo and the reader is stuck there. It’s clear Chris’s life is on hold. She attempts to go on with her daily life but it is fake; her present is waiting.

Some reviewers have accused Chris of wallowing in her pain and
Jan 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed reading this book. Anshaw's character development was excellent and it really made me feel like I had a good understanding of who everyone was; she really brought them all to life. Her vivid descriptions of their daily lives so closely paralleled reality that, at times, I felt like I was really experiencing them.

I will admit, however, that I was expecting (and really hoping!) that the book would end differently. It was slightly disappointing because I don't think I got what I *
Feb 21, 2008 rated it liked it
Seven Moves is a intriguing story of a woman, Chris, who's searching for her possibly missing lover. The lover, not known for her dependability or responsibility, might have just left the relationship, might be wandering about, or might actually have had something nefarious happen to her. Over the course of the search for answers, Chris finds out more than she bargained for about her lover's past and present. And, Chris herself enters into a new life as if her lover is never going to be heard fr ...more
Apr 25, 2012 rated it liked it
Enjoyed this, but not as much as Carry The One. Was surprised that some elements from this novel were repeated in CTO -- visiting the bath house, using some of the same character names. It was well written, funny and interesting enough to hang with it, but I felt it needed a little more than just main disappearing lover plot. The ancillary characters were interesting enough to merit some deeper delving into their exploits.
May 29, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
This book surprised me. I didn't have great expectations. The story revolves around Chris after her lover of many years unexpectedly disappears. The author is so good as describing Chris, and what is going on in her head. Anshaw has wonderful insight and elegant prose. We really get to know Chris, and what it must feel like to not know where your loved one has disappeared to. SPOILER: I liked that the reader was left not knowing what happened to Taylor, just as Chris was left wondering.

Jun 25, 2008 rated it it was ok
This came highly recommended and I enjoyed Aquamarine, Anshaw's first book, but Seven Moves was very disappointing. I expected more of a thriller and suspense novel; instead it was a slow-moving psycho-sociological exploration which became very dull. Perhaps it was my expectations, but in any case this book let me down. ...more
Amy Warrick
May 09, 2012 rated it liked it

Another broken arm review...I picked this up after enjoying Carry the One and found it very different. I thought it would be more of a standard mystery (what happened to Taylor?) but instead found an exploration of loss, what we know about our loved ones, and how we might deceive ourselves and others in love. It was smartly written but had a much more melancholy tone than Carry the One.
May 10, 2013 rated it liked it
I like her writing. It was easy to get into the book from an emotional level because we all tend to analyze why we think something happened and often aren't too kind to ourselves or others when doing so. ...more
I'm on a lesbian novel kick, and this was a good, though not great one. The relationship between the characters was kind of compelling, even though the characters themselves weren't tremendously developed. ...more
Dec 05, 2013 rated it liked it
This is some of her earlier can see glimpses of writing to come, but this pales in comparison to her elegant phrases of more recent works.
Nov 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
one of the best books that i have ever read!
Aug 22, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
B Not as captivating as Aquamarine, this novel tells the story of a woman's girlfriend who suddenly disappears…and how the narrator copes. Interesting. ...more
Notcathy J
Jun 16, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
"bad, cliched." ...more
Betty Marshall
Jul 15, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
photographer in many lands and therapist form relationship. lesbian romance, thriller
Jul 14, 2009 rated it really liked it
A solid, fun read. Not terribly deep, but sometimes that is just fine with me.
Lois Ann
rated it it was amazing
Nov 11, 2014
Allyson Randolph
rated it it was ok
Dec 07, 2015
rated it really liked it
Jan 02, 2020
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Play Book Tag: Seven Moves/Carol Anshaw/2 Stars 1 10 Jun 27, 2018 07:13AM  

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Carol Anshaw is an American novelist and short story writer. Her books include Carry the One, Lucky in the Corner, Seven Moves and Aquamarine. Her stories have been anthologized in The Best American Short Stories in 1994, 1998, and 2012. She has an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts (1992). She has won a National Book Critics Circle Citation for Excellence in Reviewing, an NEA Grant, an Illinoi ...more

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