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Swimming Home
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Novel #1

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message 1: by Arthiga (last edited Nov 13, 2012 07:13PM) (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments One of the novels I have chosen to read is Swimming Home by Deborah Levy. This book has won the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2012.

From what I researched about the book, the synopsis of the book seemed to pique my interest. This novel, unlike many others I found on the lists, is said to emphasize on the meaning of life and how we humans take it just for granted. This is portrayed through depicting the life of a group of tourists within a week at a foreign destination. The setting, which I found out after reading the summary, appealed to my attention as well, as I prefer such serene settings like the summer villa that this story is said to take place in.

Overall, I am looking forward to reading this book and learning the several morals that this book is said to teach the reader.

message 2: by Arthiga (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 10% of Swimming Home

Pg 1-15

"The days were hard and smelt of money"

Money is something very demanding. The quote makes a comparison to life and money and how they both become very demanding, thus being hard to live through.

The first 10% of this novel introduces the reader to the characters, their personalities, and the setting of the story. The image that comes to mind while reading is the setting, which I imagine to be similar to the one in the image.

Keeps me curious
Extremely cryptical
Impatient for more

message 3: by Arthiga (last edited Nov 13, 2012 07:51PM) (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 20% of Swimming Home

Pg 16-31

"Life is only worth living because we hope it will get better and we'll all get home safely."

Hope is the main reason for life in this world. Life would be pointless if we never expected anything to get better in our lives; we would just be the spectators of our own pain, not someone that can change it.

This image portrays the fact that everyone needs a shoulder to cry on. In this story, although Joe has a wife, he felt bad for Kitty and how she got depressed because her trip to the villa has taken an unexpected turn, hence, he wanted to be a good friend and tried to be good company.

What was he thinking?
Making love to a new friend?
Such dire company.

message 4: by Arthiga (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 30% of Swimming Home

P. 31-45

"Ugly words are for ugly thoughts."

Not-so-endearing thoughts and endearing words do not describe each other properly. For example, one cannot say "amazing" when describing stress at school/work, as stress isn't something considered "amazing" or anything of the sort. Therefore, to describe horrible thoughts, words considered having a negative meaning (such as "bad" or "horrible") suffice; when describing positive thoughts, words considered having a positive meaning (such as "good" or "pleasant") suffice.

In this part of the book, Isabel is not seen with her family that came to the villa with her. Instead she goes travelling around the area alone, while leaving the others to their own company.

She went all alone.
Didn't like their company?
There's more to find out.

message 5: by Arthiga (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 40% of Swimming Home

P. 46-61

"Joe's poetry is a more like a conversation with me than anything else."

Kitty tells this quote to Joe's wife, which makes her suspicious as they both seem to get along well with each other, as poetry is a mutual interest. This makes Isabel jealous. I think Kitty said that intentionally, just to make herself feel more of a better person towards Joe than his wife, since Kitty is a crazy fanatic of Joe.

This image depicts the scene when Mitchell finds Kitty naked in the kitchen in the middle of the night. It was very unexpected for him, as it is very unusual for someone to stand naked randomly at night, with no reason whatsoever.

Kitty is a creep
Why did she kidnap Nina?
Attention, perhaps?

message 6: by Arthiga (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 50% of Swimming Home

P. 62-77

"This was not so much an unspoken secret pact between them (Kitty's parents), more like having a tiny splinter of glass in the sole of her foot, always there, slightly painful, but she could live with it."

Kitty did not have an enjoyable childhood, mainly because of the pointless silences between her parents. She knew the silence hurt her mother a lot, however still managed to run a family with him, regardless of his awkward behaviour.

This image shows that the parents of a child are arguing with each other, regardless of the child's feelings of worry towards them.

Ket distracting Joe
Can end the kinship between
Him and Isabel

message 7: by Arthiga (last edited Dec 10, 2012 08:03PM) (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 60% of Swimming Home

P. 78-93

"There is no sensation that is keener or more active than their pain. They give nothing back except their depression. It's just like another utility."

Joe has hatred towards the depressed, as he thinks that depression is "contagious". Whenever someone is depressed, it just hits you, because one will get annoyed by this person's depressing behaviour. The feeling of depression is also considered very strong in the quote.

This image portrays how a person would feel while going through depression: isolated. lonely. excluded. sad, overall.

It is very glum
The things that depression could do
Scary loneliness

message 8: by Arthiga (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 70% of Swimming Home

P. 94-109

"Kitty was obviously upset about something. She had taken off all of her clothes and stood naked at the edge of the pool as if no one else was there."

The awkward ("crazy") behaviour of Kitty is proven in this quote. Kitty thinks that since she's depressed, taking her clothes off and standing around her neighbours that are watching her is completely normal, when, in reality, it is not.

This image depicts the inequality that happens at the villa. Everyone else, except Kitty, is considered to be respected more than she is. They are also considered to be normal.

What was that creature,
The one they found in the pool?
Is that an omen?

message 9: by Arthiga (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 80% of Swimming Home

P. 110-125


Kitty says this when the psychologist tells Isabel about her psychological problems. She tries to deny the fact that she is crazy, and makes the professionals look like they are tormenting her.

Nina sneakingly reads Kitty's poem, since her dad tried to avoid reading it and she felt bad for her. She does it for the sake of her friendship with Kitty Finch.

Such a true friendship
Does not exist in this world.
But one can dream it.

message 10: by Arthiga (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 90% of Swimming Home

P. 126-141

"He was always cheerful. So cheerful, she thought he might be in terrible danger."

Kitty thinks that if one seems way too happy for a moment, there is something wrong with the person, psychotically. Joe was a gloomy guy, and seeing this cheerful side coming from his end was unexpected for her, and made her worried.

Kitty and Joe went on a date together, although Joe has a family of his own, not including Kitty. Therefore, the date is considered a secret date.

Joe and Kitty Finch
A very sneaky couple
What a bitter guy.

message 11: by E (new)

E Geist | 11 comments Mod
Solid. Haikus for all.

message 12: by Arthiga (new)

Arthiga | 22 comments 100% of Swimming Home

P. 142-157

"He shot himself with one of your guns, Mitchell."

In the ending of the novel, Joe kills himself for being a man disloyal to his family and not being able to lead a peaceful, happy life. He shot himself using a family friend's gun.

This image depicts environment of mourning of the death of a loved one. Quiet. Sorrowful. Indescribable, overall.

Scary, silent, dire
Hurtful to everyone
Wistful wife and child

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