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1 Burnside Literature- A to Z

Get a Life

by

Get a Life Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Paul Bannerman, an ecologist in South Africa, believes he understands the trajectory of his life, with the usual markers of vocation and marriage. But when he's diagnosed with thyroid cancer and, after surgery, prescribed treatment that will leave him radioactive, for a period a danger to others, he begins to question, as Auden wrote, "what Authority gives / existence its surprise."

In the garden of his childhood home, where his businessman father, Adrian, and prominent civil rights lawyer mother, Lyndsay, take him in to protect his wife and child from radiation, he enters an unthinkable existence and another kind of illumination: the contradiction between the values of his work and those of his wife, Benni, an ad agency executive. His mother is transformed by the strange state of her son's existence to face her own past. Meanwhile, projects to build a nuclear reactor and drain vital wetlands preoccupy Paul as if he were at work. By the time he is cured, both families have been changed. On his return to his home and career, his parents go to Mexico to fulfill the archaeological vocation Adrian sacrificed to support his family. The consequence of this trip is the final surprise in this extraordinary exploration of passionate individual existences.

Review:

"More profound, more searching, more accomplished than what she was writing earlier in her long and distinguished career." Los Angeles Times

Review:

"Nadine Gordimer's work is endowed with an emotional genius so palpable one experiences it like a finger pressing steadily upon the prose." The Village Voice

Review:

"A timely novel and a provocative one: a novel to enjoy and ponder, as its characters all do, the dizzying complications inherent in human choice." The Washington Times

Review:

"I will always be grateful for the presence in the world of Nadine Gordimer, who has delivered in literature a South Africa most of us could not have known without her." Gail Caldwell, The Boston Globe

Review:

"Don't let the slangy title of this Nobel Prize winner's 14th novel mislead you — light is one thing Get a Life is not. But like many challenging works of art, this one is worthwhile." BookReporter.com

Review:

"[A] strangely chilling read." Seattle Times

Review:

"Get a Life is thought-provoking and thematically complex, but the story is muddied and undermined by its writer's stylistic experimentation." San Diego Union-Tribune

Review:

"By aiming too hard for universality, the particular is lost. Sickness may be a universal human affliction, but that doesn't mean each person's experience of it isn't unique. This novel forgets that." New York Times

Review:

"Gordimer, whose writing has always been diamond hard, has pared her prose even further, to a terse, almost telegraphic style, as if there were no time to waste fleshing out sentences. The result is at once incantatory and distancing." San Francisco Chronicle

Synopsis:

Nobel Prize winner Nadine Gordimer follows the inner lives of characters confronted by unforeseen circumstances. Paul Bannerman, an ecologist in South Africa, believes he understands the trajectory of his life, with the usual markers of vocation and marriage. But when he's diagnosed with thyroid cancer and, after surgery, prescribed treatment that will leave him radioactive-and for a period a danger to others-he begins to question, as Auden wrote, "what Authority gives / existence its surprise." As Paul recuperates in the garden of his childhood home, he enters an unthinkable existence and another kind of illumination-a process that will irrevocably change not only his life but the lives of his wife and parents.

Synopsis:

"More profound, more searching, more accomplished than what she was writing earlier in her long and distinguished career."

-Los Angeles Times

"Nadine Gordimer's work is endowed with an emotional genius so palpable one experiences it like a finger pressing steadily upon the prose."

-The Village Voice

"A timely novel and a provocative one: a novel to enjoy and ponder, as its characters all do, the dizzying complications inherent in human choice."

-The Washington Times

"I will always be grateful for the presence in the world of Nadine Gordimer, who has delivered in literature a South Africa most of us could not have known without her."

-Gail Caldwell, The Boston Globe

About the Author

Nadine Gordimer is the author of eleven previous novels, as well as collections of stories and essays. She has received many awards, including the Booker Prize (for The Conservationist in 1974) and the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1991. She lives in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780143037927
Author:
Gordimer, Nadine
Publisher:
Penguin Books
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Mass Market
Publication Date:
20061131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Pages:
208
Dimensions:
7.76x5.14x.66 in. .36 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

Get a Life Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$4.50 In Stock
Product details 208 pages Penguin Books - English 9780143037927 Reviews:
"Review" by , "More profound, more searching, more accomplished than what she was writing earlier in her long and distinguished career."
"Review" by , "Nadine Gordimer's work is endowed with an emotional genius so palpable one experiences it like a finger pressing steadily upon the prose."
"Review" by , "A timely novel and a provocative one: a novel to enjoy and ponder, as its characters all do, the dizzying complications inherent in human choice."
"Review" by , "I will always be grateful for the presence in the world of Nadine Gordimer, who has delivered in literature a South Africa most of us could not have known without her."
"Review" by , "Don't let the slangy title of this Nobel Prize winner's 14th novel mislead you — light is one thing Get a Life is not. But like many challenging works of art, this one is worthwhile."
"Review" by , "[A] strangely chilling read."
"Review" by , "Get a Life is thought-provoking and thematically complex, but the story is muddied and undermined by its writer's stylistic experimentation."
"Review" by , "By aiming too hard for universality, the particular is lost. Sickness may be a universal human affliction, but that doesn't mean each person's experience of it isn't unique. This novel forgets that."
"Review" by , "Gordimer, whose writing has always been diamond hard, has pared her prose even further, to a terse, almost telegraphic style, as if there were no time to waste fleshing out sentences. The result is at once incantatory and distancing."
"Synopsis" by ,
Nobel Prize winner Nadine Gordimer follows the inner lives of characters confronted by unforeseen circumstances. Paul Bannerman, an ecologist in South Africa, believes he understands the trajectory of his life, with the usual markers of vocation and marriage. But when he's diagnosed with thyroid cancer and, after surgery, prescribed treatment that will leave him radioactive-and for a period a danger to others-he begins to question, as Auden wrote, "what Authority gives / existence its surprise." As Paul recuperates in the garden of his childhood home, he enters an unthinkable existence and another kind of illumination-a process that will irrevocably change not only his life but the lives of his wife and parents.
"Synopsis" by , "More profound, more searching, more accomplished than what she was writing earlier in her long and distinguished career."

-Los Angeles Times

"Nadine Gordimer's work is endowed with an emotional genius so palpable one experiences it like a finger pressing steadily upon the prose."

-The Village Voice

"A timely novel and a provocative one: a novel to enjoy and ponder, as its characters all do, the dizzying complications inherent in human choice."

-The Washington Times

"I will always be grateful for the presence in the world of Nadine Gordimer, who has delivered in literature a South Africa most of us could not have known without her."

-Gail Caldwell, The Boston Globe

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