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1 Burnside Literature- A to Z

Spider

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Spider Cover

ISBN13: 9780679736301
ISBN10: 0679736301
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Spider is gaunt, threadbare, unnerved by everything from his landlady to the smell of gas. He tells us his story in a storm of beautiful language that slowly reveals itself as a fiendishly layered construction of truth and illusion. With echoes of Beckett, Poe, and Paul Bowles, Spider is a tale of horror and madness, storytelling and skepticism, a novel whose dizzying style lays bare the deepest layers of subconscious terror.

Review:

"[A] closely observed study of madness, memory and storytelling....An admixture of Poe and the comic vulnerabilities of Beckett, this tale lingers long and disturbingly in the mind." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"[T]ruly outstanding....Accomplished in the sinister and macabre, McGrath transcends his already solid reputation with a powerfully realized character named Spider who simply won't let you go once you meet him in these densely evocative pages....As in Dickens, there's beauty here, too, the beauty of otherness....McGrath is a master stylist." The Christian Science Monitor

Review:

"A small classic of horror." Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

Review:

"Despite a less pungent second half, Spider confirms McGrath's mastery of the terrain he's staked out for himself: a twisted place where the most rank, hideous experiences are conveyed in a prose so tight, assured, and essentially self-mocking that he maintains a fine balance between high gothic horror and fussy stylization." Voice Literary Supplement

Review:

"Patrick McGrath's second novel is neither convincing nor compelling except, possibly, as a minor horror story. There is certainly enough horror, but of a squalid, repetitive nature, and lovers of gore would be better served by Stephen King. On the other hand, there is too little psychological depth or intensity...to make this book worth reading for the sake of its insights into madness." The Times Literary Supplement (U.K.)

Review:

"Disturbing, wholly absorbing....[A] combination murder mystery/dark-night-of-the-soul...touchingly, menacingly brilliant." Chicago Tribune

Review:

"A gorgeous, painful howl of madness, shockingly perfect." John Hawkes

Review:

"As in many stories by Poe, McGrath's portrayal of a diseased mind evokes disquiet but also voyeuristic fascination." Library Journal

Synopsis:

The novel is the purported journal of Dennis 'Spider' Cleg, a frail, deranged Londoner. After many years away, Spider returns to his old neighborhood in London's East End slums. Ensconced in a small drab room in a grubby boarding house, he keeps a written record in which he reconstructs and grapples with the mysterious events in his childhood that caused his long sojourn in Canada.

Basis for the new film directed by David Cronenberg (Dead Ringers) and starring Ralph Fiennes and Gabriel Byrne.

About the Author

Patrick McGrath lives in New York City and London. His books include The Grotesque, Asylum, and Martha Peake.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Suffolkgirl, May 12, 2012 (view all comments by Suffolkgirl)
An intense novel about schizophrenia as seen through the eyes of the eponymous protagonist. Everything is his reality and the novel charts the beginnings of his condition around the time of puberty until his return to the poor area of London where he grew up. Patrick McGrath's spare, unsentimental writing draws the reader into Spider's world. It is also an accurate knife-sharp portrayal of a slice of mid 20th century British working class urban life, especially the lives revolving round the pub and the drunken homecomings, as unnerving to a child as a clown in full make up who comes too close.
If you read the book then get the DVD starring Ralph Fiennes in a pitch perfect portrayal.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780679736301
Author:
McGrath, Patrick
Publisher:
Vintage Books
Location:
New York :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
Mentally ill
Subject:
Psychological fiction
Subject:
Mentally ill -- England -- London -- Fiction.
Subject:
London (England) Fiction.
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage Contemporaries (Paperback)
Series Volume:
970
Publication Date:
October 1991
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
224
Dimensions:
8.04x5.23x.64 in. .50 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z

Spider Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$4.50 In Stock
Product details 224 pages Vintage Books USA - English 9780679736301 Reviews:
"Review" by , "[A] closely observed study of madness, memory and storytelling....An admixture of Poe and the comic vulnerabilities of Beckett, this tale lingers long and disturbingly in the mind."
"Review" by , "[T]ruly outstanding....Accomplished in the sinister and macabre, McGrath transcends his already solid reputation with a powerfully realized character named Spider who simply won't let you go once you meet him in these densely evocative pages....As in Dickens, there's beauty here, too, the beauty of otherness....McGrath is a master stylist."
"Review" by , "A small classic of horror."
"Review" by , "Despite a less pungent second half, Spider confirms McGrath's mastery of the terrain he's staked out for himself: a twisted place where the most rank, hideous experiences are conveyed in a prose so tight, assured, and essentially self-mocking that he maintains a fine balance between high gothic horror and fussy stylization."
"Review" by , "Patrick McGrath's second novel is neither convincing nor compelling except, possibly, as a minor horror story. There is certainly enough horror, but of a squalid, repetitive nature, and lovers of gore would be better served by Stephen King. On the other hand, there is too little psychological depth or intensity...to make this book worth reading for the sake of its insights into madness."
"Review" by , "Disturbing, wholly absorbing....[A] combination murder mystery/dark-night-of-the-soul...touchingly, menacingly brilliant."
"Review" by , "A gorgeous, painful howl of madness, shockingly perfect."
"Review" by , "As in many stories by Poe, McGrath's portrayal of a diseased mind evokes disquiet but also voyeuristic fascination."
"Synopsis" by , The novel is the purported journal of Dennis 'Spider' Cleg, a frail, deranged Londoner. After many years away, Spider returns to his old neighborhood in London's East End slums. Ensconced in a small drab room in a grubby boarding house, he keeps a written record in which he reconstructs and grapples with the mysterious events in his childhood that caused his long sojourn in Canada.

Basis for the new film directed by David Cronenberg (Dead Ringers) and starring Ralph Fiennes and Gabriel Byrne.

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