Mandy’s review of Submission > Likes and Comments

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message 1: by David (new)

David I'm sure your review is MUCH more entertaining than the book!


message 2: by Mandy (last edited Oct 23, 2015 01:52AM) (new)

Mandy David wrote: "I'm sure your review is MUCH more entertaining than the book!"

Well thank you!


message 3: by Nathan (new)

Nathan I think his "narcissistic self-indulgence" is the point. His character doesn't critique the moral flabbiness of Western society, he embodies it. The way he shrugs off his Jewish girlfriend, how he pointedly ignores the violence around him, his laser-like focus on comfort and sex -- he is the Modern Man. If the character's actions (or non-actions, in this case) anger you, I'd argue that Houllebecq made his point.

It's pretty bleak comedy, though. Not to everyone's taste, I admit. But if you think about the book as embodying the problem instead of articulating it, maybe you'll find more to enjoy.


message 4: by Mandy (new)

Mandy Nathan wrote: "I think his "narcissistic self-indulgence" is the point. His character doesn't critique the moral flabbiness of Western society, he embodies it. The way he shrugs off his Jewish girlfriend, how he ..."

Thank you for your insightful comments, food for thought there, maybe I took the book more at face value than I should have.


message 5: by Maria (new)

Maria Couldn't agree more, such a dissapointment! To think of all the potential it had...


message 6: by Cla (new)

Cla It's a novel not an essay.


message 7: by Mandy (new)

Mandy Cla wrote: "It's a novel not an essay."

I know that - I don't see what point you're making - could you explain?
Thank you


message 8: by Cateluta (new)

Cateluta Cucu I've read a lot of comments on this book, but yours is by far the best, it hits the nail on its head. This is exactly what I wanted to say: what a good timing, what an opportunity to say all the important things and how it was wasted. The author spent long pages with literary musings that no one cares about or even understand, instead of trying to explore the aftermath of such a dramatic change in one of the most important countries in Europe. And even the pre-math... how is it possible that the French people accepts to be run by muslims so easily (when they only represent 10% of the population), what about their illuminist ideals so long acclaimed ? What about women who fought so hard for emancipation, only to keep silent in this book and "go gentle into the night" ? What about the reaction of other important non-EU countries like US or Russia to which a caliphate in the heart of Europe would be a total pain in the neck ? How can we believe that so many muslim countries would be accepted in thd EU just because the new French leader is a charismatic guy ? Life is so much more complicated than this. But maybe the author just wanted to write a parable, a satire, as everybody says, and he wasn't interested in plausibility in any way. To me it looked like a very superficial work. And those explicit sex scenes which came from nowhere and did not fit at all with the rest of the book; the way Rediger is brought in just to allow the author to explain the muslim arguments... very clumsy for such a high rated writer. And, finally, I can't believe that there are people who are so placid, so disinterested of everything going on around them - and in this book it's not only Francois like this, but almost the whole French public, it's like they are all some automatons... Really ?! Then we should better lie down and die, why all the bother ?


message 9: by Marika (new)

Marika My thoughts exactly! Well written.


message 10: by Andra (new)

Andra I totally agree, the book was a disappointment. I was expecting a well written dystopia, instead I had to deal with an unchallenging plot and an one-dimensional main character.


message 11: by Javier (new)

Javier Gas Although I still haven't finsihed the book, i have to admit that I couldn't agree more with your review.


message 12: by Pato (new)

Pato Baeza Contreras Couldn't agree more. After reading more than one of Houllebecq's book you get the feeling that he might not be using irony but just being himself. The characters feel flat, paper figures used by a decadent man to express his disdain for Islam and women, but ESPECIALLY women. I so strongly dislike his writing.


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