ne of the truly transcendent moments (in more ways than one) in Jim Crace’s ” Quarantine,” his Whitbread Prize-winning novel about Christ’s Being Dead has ratings and reviews. Tyler said: Craft and good writing make this book a hit with many readers. Innovative form and thinking pro. Being Dead is a novel by the English writer Jim Crace, published in Its principal characters are married zoologists Joseph and Celice and their daughter .
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A gleamingly honest and original vantage of life and death “Being Dead” somehow illuminates Being Alive.
In one, about the Amazon, my eyes popped as I saw piranhas strip some hapless mammal to its bones in forty seconds flat. I know much more about post-mortem processes than I ever thought I’d need to. The form of the story weaves along three tracks: This book, beginning as it does at the end, undoes any ordinary desires for suspense.
I have to force myself to be realistic.
They who begin to live begin to die. Remember, Van Gogh was nobody at the time, this would have been even more insignificant then his portraits. May 30, Madeleine rated it really liked it Shelves: This is presented as ultimate truth.
More importantly, these are his own shoes. When the book comes to a close with Celice and Joseph’s killer nowhere to be found, it’s really not that important. For while his hand was touching her, curved round her shin, the couple seemed to have achieved that peace the world denies, a period of crzce, defying even murder. Their bodies lie undiscovered for several days, during the course of which their estranged daughter is cracw aware of their disappearance and, eventually, discovery.
Part and parcel of this conundrum is that I enjoy Crace’s writing when he is beinng with his dead characters than when he is their puppet-master as they interact in the world.
Being Dead by Jim Crace
Surprisingly brilliant, vivid, and original meditation on sex and death. Instead, they are battered to death by a thief with a chunk of granite. It describes death and decay in detached detail in a way that is simultaneously disgusting and beautiful; passages are searingly poetic.
Whereas the natural process of decay and the aging bodies are portrayed with prose fead gorgeous it seems to render the grotesque as beautiful, the ordinary lives of intelligent, successful scientists, an intact middle-class family, and the range of ordinary people who are involved in identifying the bodies are depicted as bordering on the miserable. Instead, peculiar would be a more fitting word.
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Mar 03, Grady rated it it was amazing. Mar 11, Kirsten rated it liked it Recommended to Kirsten by: National Book Critics Circle Award. I thought the American Northeast, but no fit there either. Early in this extraordinary little book he states “It’s only those who glimpse the awful, endless corridor of death, too gross to contemplate, that need to lose themselves in love or art. They came off the grass and on to cotton, then into wood-effect, then on to the flat bed of the sand jeep, along the beach and through the suburbs to the icy, sliding drawers of the city morgue, the coroner’s far room, amongst the suicides.
For a collection of highlights from the US reviews of Being Dead, click here.
Why should we care for these people? Want to Read Currently Reading Read. One strand moves backwards from the point of the murder to describe the events that immediately led up to it.
Their memories, exposed to the backward-running time of quiverings in which regrets became prospects, resentments became love, experience became hope, would up-end the hourglass of Celice and Joseph’s life together and let their sands reverse.
Joseph’s body rolled towards the west. Life is fragile, fleeting, impotent — scarcely worth the effort except by pitiable self-delusion.
And I think Crace deqd right to choose death as the moment to convey so many complexities. Dec 25, Kirstie rated it really liked it Recommends it for: