- Hardcover: 432 pages
- Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers; ePub edition edition (21 August 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0008185212
- ISBN-13: 978-0008185213
- Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 3.7 x 24 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 699 g
- Average Customer Review: 15 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 60,531 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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My Absolute Darling: The Sunday Times Bestseller Hardcover – 21 Aug 2017
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‘There are books we like well enough to recommend, but there are a very few – To Kill a Mockingbird, Catch-22, The Things They Carried – that we remember forever. To my own shortlist I can now add My Absolute Darling, by Gabriel Tallent … The word “masterpiece” has been cheapened by too many blurbs, but My Absolute Darling absolutely is one’ Stephen King
‘If you liked Hanya Yanagihara’s A Little Life, you’ll love this’ Daily Mail
‘A powerful tale with a howitzer of a heroine and a plethora of extraordinary scenes’ TLS
‘A heartrending debut that will shock, then shake, then inspire you’ Celeste Ng, author of Everything I Never Told You
‘An outstanding book that could be this year’s A Little Life’ Guardian
‘My Absolute Darling is an absolute triumph’ National
‘The writing is beautiful and vivid, while the story is brilliantly urgent, brutal and uncompromising’ Claire Fuller, author of Our Endless Numbered Days
‘Tallent’s breathtaking debut is a harrowing and at times psychologically difficult journey on the scale of A Little Life or The Goldfinch, but it’s worth it . . . a true inspiration’ Harper’s Bazaar
‘Once a year – certainly no more – along comes a special novel that turns its readers into literary holy rollers. A couple of years ago it was Hanya Yanagihara’s A Little Life. Before that Ferrante fever. This year, I suspect it will be My Absolute Darling’ The Times
‘This is a compelling and unsettling novel that sucks you into its darkly warped world and doesn’t let go until the last page … powerful, violent, savage and quite brilliant’ Daily Express
‘A gut wrenching, terrifying novel written so beautifully it sings off the page’ Kate Hamer, author of The Girl in the Red Coat
‘This is a bloody, bru
About the Author
Gabriel Tallent was born in New Mexico and raised on the Mendocino coast by two mothers. He received his B.A. from Willamette University in 2010, and after graduation spent two seasons leading youth trail crews in the backcountry of the Pacific Northwest. Tallent lives in Salt Lake City.
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I was okay with the dark themes and content, although I can understand why this aspect of the book has divided opinion. I was even okay with how these were (sometimes mis-)handled. Most of the time, however, I just didn't get the point of what I was reading. Descriptions of guns, more descriptions of guns, descriptions of the sea and the water and things in the sea. I did appreciate the author's skill but I really needed a way to connect more with the story.
The accounts of abuse are graphic and uncompromising, and must have taken a toll on the author to write.
Tallent's prose is luscious and detailed - it soaks the reader in the main character's surroundings, and also enters the reader into her often devastating stream of consciousness as she uses all her strength to survive her father's insanity and abuse.
An excellent representation of Stockholm Syndrome between an abusive parent and a child, which takes every ounce of the main character's will and energy to escape, often relapsing along the way.
Recommended read, but might be triggering for people who themselves have suffered childhood abuse. Read with caution.
And yet throughout the book there is a sense of non believability which the writer desperately tries to override ....the main character known as Julia ,Kibble or Turtle is amazingly, non-destructible...as young child/young adult she is abused in so many indescribable ways and yet she unwittingly chooses to blindly love,and constantly forgive her pathologically insanely brilliant cruel sick father on whom she depends on for survival in a hostile environment
This gives her incredible resilience even when she is filled with immense self loathing and doubt and unable to fully justify her fathers brutal actions she seemingly initially rather helplessly, chooses to accept her fate
There are so many physically horrific things that happen to her ( most writers would be happy with a couple of these life defying plots but no not this writer ....he has made and created a super hero worthy of her own series.... and on reflection all the main characters have an amazing ability to survive...that again behooves believability
All in all the writing is good and the tension palatable you are constantly aware that the writer is clever
( although perhaps he has made her 2 school friends too clever for their age)
And yet overall there is a sense of greatness an immoral tale passionately told and if this is a debut novel ....wow
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