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Written on the Body
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1001 book reviews > Written on the Body by Jeanette Winterson

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Diane Zwang | 1367 comments Mod
Written on the Body by Jeanette Winterson
4/5 stars

"Love is worth it."

The story is about two lovers; one whose name is Louise and the other we do not know name or gender. Since I have already read Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit by the author I assumed going into the story that the un-named lover was female. As the story progressed I changed my mind and decided the lover was male but by the end of the book I thought for sure female. I think this is what the author was going for ambiguity in relationships and feelings. I think this is a book that would benefit from reading in one sitting, which I did not do. I thought the last half of the book was the best for me, I finally got emotionally attached to the characters.

“I have fallen in love with a woman who is married. She has fallen in love with me. I am committed to someone else. How shall I know whether Louise is what I must do or must avoid.”


Diane  | 2044 comments Rating: 4 stars

A beautifully-written and moving book. Even though the nameless narrator's gender was left ambiguous, I always pictured a female in my mind - probably since I have read so many of Winterson's books. I can see how either gender would apply, however. Like Diane, I enjoyed the second half of the book even more than the first.


Kelly_Hunsaker_reads ... | 902 comments It looks like we need a second thread for reviewers who aren't named Diane. :)


Melissa Moving and emotional story of love and loss... definitely not one to read if you’ve recently lost someone. Told through reminisces of relationships past, and the one that was just right and you lost.... and can you go back and right the wrongs, even as everything reminds you of what you’ve lost.

4 Stars for me


Gail (gailifer) | 1613 comments Written on the Body - 4 stars
A very emotionally engaging book that focuses on a relationship that was simply everything to our main character and which he/she choose to end rightly or wrongly. The author keeps many aspects of the story ambiguous including the gender of our main character although it didn't occur to me that it could be a man until half way through the book. I guess that is what I brought to the book. I really appreciated the tight nature of the story which talked of many past relationships as a way to compare the one central relationship but did not stray into much about other friendships, or parents or jobs in any depth unless it added to the story line.


Hilde (hilded) | 356 comments Written on the Body - 3 stars
Read May 2021 for my TBR challenge

I thought the first half of the book was really slow-going, and to be honest with lots of ramblings. Like Diane (post 1) I liked the second half best, when I finally got attached to the characters, and could feel their pain. Beautifully written, but I enjoyed Winterson's Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit much more than this one. However, clever use of the narrator to show that gender doesn't matter at all when it comes to love. I, like the other reviews above, changed my opinion many times as to the gender of the main character, but in the end it didn't matter if the narrator was a male or female.


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