The Hiding Place PDF/EPUB É The Hiding PDF \

The Hiding Place PDF/EPUB É The Hiding  PDF \ A finalist for the prestigious Man Booker Prize, The Hiding Place Welsh novelist Trezza Azzopardi s lyrical tale of an immigrant family in Cardiff has been compared to Frank McCourt s bleak, stirring memoir Angela s Ashes But The Hiding Place need not hide behind any ready made comparisons Azzopardi s astonishing, tension filled debut stands assuredly on its own as a work of tremendous power and originalityThe Hiding Place is narrated by Dolores, the youngest of six daughters born to a Maltese immigrant father and a Welsh mother With one hand permanently disfigured by a fire when she was only one month old the hand is beautifully described by the author as a closed white tulip standing in the rain a cutoff creamy marble in the shape of a Saint a church candle with its tears flowing down the bulb of wrist Dolores has always been treated as an outcast Her father, Frankie Gauci, is an incorrigible gambler who bets than he can afford to lose On the day Dolores is born, he loses his half share of a cafeacute, as well as the apartment above it where his family lives Everything in Frankie s life is potential currency, including his family he even sells his second oldest daughter Marina to gangster Joe Medora in exchange for a house and money to pay off his debts Dolores s mother, Mary, is driven to the edge of insanity as she watches the world around her collapse, helpless to save even her children from her husband s vices At times, The Hiding Place paints a phantasmagoric portrait of cruelty, but Trezza Azzopardi s gracefully exacting prose saves her tale from becoming a shock fest of the sort you would expect on daytime television talk shows Azzopardi forges profundity through delicately interwoven double sided images rabbits that are the children s playthings, until they are brutally slaughtered by their father trunks, rooms, and cages that can either protect or ensnare and most abundantly and most significantly, fire, which can warm as well as ravage Even Dolores s older sister Fran is sent away to a home for being a pyromaniac, craving risk like her father, gambling on how hot, how high, on how long she can bear it While some readers may wonder how Dolores is able to relate events that happened when she was so young, it is easy to associate these stories with the phantom pains she feels in her missing fingers, her ability to miss something she never knew The story comes to us in a dreamlike tapestry, weaving together different times and perspectives Consequently, the narrative is fragmented, leaving the reader with half tellings, missing details, stories that unfold only in the retelling, and a sense that the only fact we can be certain of is the profound meaning she imparts through them The Hiding Place is as much a portrait of a family s destruction as it is an exploration of how memory bends and buckles under the weight of ruin, and how blame can be twisted like a flame in draught it will burn and burn I couldn t decide whether to give this a three or a four star rating I went with three stars, but it would beaccurate to say 3.5 Anyway, this is a very dark but well written book, and since I appreciate good writing, I enjoyed the book for that alone The story reminded me of Angela s Ashes, but I liked it muchthan I did that book.The family in the story is very poor, and the mother can t cope with the horrible situation in which she finds herself with five daughters to care for an I couldn t decide whether to give this a three or a four star rating I went with three stars, but it would beaccurate to say 3.5 Anyway, this is a very dark but well written book, and since I appreciate good writing, I enjoyed the book for that alone The story reminded me of Angela s Ashes, but I liked it muchthan I did that book.The family in the story is very poor, and the mother can t cope with the horrible situation in which she finds herself with five daughters to care for and a gambling, irresponsible husband Dolores, the youngest daughter, narrates most of the book, and at times I wasn t sure whose narration I was reading, which was confusing for me, but I still became emotionally involved with the characters I actually cried at the end, which tells me I DID at least understand some of what I read.This book is not for anyone who likes a book with a linear plot I m quite particular about family dramas, I either love them or loathe them with little I between This however I adored The tale of the childhood of sisters brought up by a pair of runaway parents one from Malta one from the valleys is a wonderful, evocative and occasionally emotionally wrought tale that looks at the lives of the working classes and how the memories of children can be so different from the truth Family secrets and twists galore, stunning writing Bingo. Not an easy read due to the way the story is laid out and jumps around so much Also a lot of characters to try to keep straight By the ending, I was not at all sure what exactly had happened to the main character Maybe I need to re read portions of it, but don t really want to. This novel is quite extraordinary a compelling read I found it by accident while on holiday when I really needed a new book, and ended up reading it through the night and finally saying wow I had intuited how it would end, but that didn t make me less impressed by it The way the author structured the novel is impressive, and I think it was her very first It feels very autobiographical, and if it s not, then it is truly impressive and of course, I hope it wasn t autobiographical given This novel is quite extraordinary a compelling read I found it by accident while on holiday when I really needed a new book, and ended up reading it through the night and finally saying wow I had intuited how it would end, but that didn t make me less impressed by it The way the author structured the novel is impressive, and I think it was her very first It feels very autobiographical, and if it s not, then it is truly impressive and of course, I hope it wasn t autobiographical given the content I studied this as part of course at uni we were covering contemporary literature which involved having the writers who just so happen to teach at UEA coming and talking to us about a novel of their own, and a novel by another author that inspired them, although Trezza Azzopardi chose not to do this Anyway, although I found Azzopardi herself very interesting, and engaged with many of her ideas and themes such as memory, reconstructing the past etc , I really struggled to stay involved with I studied this as part of course at uni we were covering contemporary literature which involved having the writers who just so happen to teach at UEA coming and talking to us about a novel of their own, and a novel by another author that inspired them, although Trezza Azzopardi chose not to do this Anyway, although I found Azzopardi herself very interesting, and engaged with many of her ideas and themes such as memory, reconstructing the past etc , I really struggled to stay involved with this book, especially in its second half, which at times feels like unneccessary exposition laying bare all the subtly hinted at horrors of the first half, that could have been all thepowerful if they had just been left to stand alone What an entrance The first time anybody heard of Trezza Azzopardi, she was nominated for one of the world s most prestigious literary awards Nestled among books by Kazuo Ishiguro and Margaret Atwood, there sat The Hiding Place, a first novel by a recent graduate student, up for this year s Booker Prize English bookstores scrambled to find copies Readers in the US were locked out while publishers bid on the domestic rights Gratefully, Atlantic Monthly Press, the most discerning publisher o What an entrance The first time anybody heard of Trezza Azzopardi, she was nominated for one of the world s most prestigious literary awards Nestled among books by Kazuo Ishiguro and Margaret Atwood, there sat The Hiding Place, a first novel by a recent graduate student, up for this year s Booker Prize English bookstores scrambled to find copies Readers in the US were locked out while publishers bid on the domestic rights Gratefully, Atlantic Monthly Press, the most discerning publisher of literary fiction in America, is releasing the book this week.Wherever Azzopardi has been hiding, it s been worth the wait Her novel about the misfortunes of the Gauci family in Cardiff, Wales, burns with the blue flame of long smothered agony And yet her sophisticated handling of the early trauma memoir, made so spectacularly popular by Frank McCourt Co., casts fresh light on the process of memory and the subjectivity of experience.The story is told by Dolores, the youngest of the Gauci s six girls in a poor Maltese immigrant community A series of delicately rendered scenes shows the family collapsing in a neighborhood that s slowly being demolished in the 1960s You can smell the close, grimy quarters of Cardiff in these pages Azzopardi creates a collection of neighbors pushed alternately to compassion or bitterness by unrelenting poverty.The children, meanwhile, must navigate this turbulence largely on their own Dolores s hauntingly cool voice a hybrid perspective of a child s innocence and an adult s irony describes the family s decay.Their father, Frank, is a man givenchances than he deserves He owns half a cafe that could support them, but he can t shake the thirst for easy wealth, and in the process he starves his family, pushing his wife and one of his daughters into prostitution.The night Dolores is born, Frank is playing cards with a two bit gangster, an archetypal villain who makes sure he looks the part His friends send him a lie about the birth to raise his spirits My father, who is Frankie Bambina to his friends, poor unlucky Frank to have so many daughters, twists in reckless joy, and loses the cafe, the shoebox under the floorboards full with big money, his own father s ruby ring, and my mother s white lace gown 8230 At least I have a son, he thinks, as he rolls the ring across the worn green felt In the novel s most wrenching moment, 1 month old Dolores is almost burned to death in their apartment She survives the flames, but loses her wispy new hair, much of her baby soft skin, and her left hand.Regarded first as a disappointment for being a girl, by the time Dolores becomes aware of herself, she s aware of herself as a charred embodiment of the family s bad luck.One of the many frightening talents of this new author is the way she delineates the scale of a child s pain Tragedies large and small sear Dolores with equivalent effect When her pet rabbits are killed, for instance, the damage to her seems almost as severe as the loss of her hand.Their mother loves these girls and fights to save them from their father s carelessness and the social workers care, but circumstances seem destined to crush her body and mind She s never free from the terror of having to support six children while lashed to an abusive husband ready to sell off anything and anyone that might bring in a bit of luck or money.Dolores winds through these events without blame or sentimentality She has a clear eyed view of her parents agony even through the cloud of their shameless irresponsibility She wants only to retrieve these memories and place them in order, as though that might relieve her of the burden of wishing she could have saved her parents from themselves.A short section set in the present day at first seems tacked on to this harrowing story of childhood But it quickly complicates the novel in fascinating ways Dolores notes, As with all truth, there is another version When the sisters gather for the first time in 30 years for their mother s funeral, the air is thick with those other versions long nursed grievances, rock solid denial, and the unquenched need to reconnect with their fellow survivors.Dolores begins to realize that common experiences don t make for common perceptions or similar needs Some of her sisters insist she couldn t have witnessed crucial events she recalls with great precision The oldest sibling has interred the past and insists that no one disturb it For Dolores, this long awaited reunion threatens a final separation from her siblings And yet, as with so much of the suffering in this book, there is a kind of tenacious love beating beneath the surface.http www.csmonitor.com 2001 0111 p1 The plot had potential but the writing style made it painfully slow, often boring and in the end confusing This is the story of a family set in the background of Maltese immigrants in Cardiff Not actually knowing that background myself, many of the settings reminded me of the Godfather or the Sopranos The parents Frankie and Mary go through some hard times and aren t very successful taking care of their six girls and so it s often the community that has to do it for them While I liked some o The plot had potential but the writing style made it painfully slow, often boring and in the end confusing This is the story of a family set in the background of Maltese immigrants in Cardiff Not actually knowing that background myself, many of the settings reminded me of the Godfather or the Sopranos The parents Frankie and Mary go through some hard times and aren t very successful taking care of their six girls and so it s often the community that has to do it for them While I liked some of the characters Eva and Salvatore come to mind many of the main characters were hard to pinpoint and understand.The 2nd part of the book concerns a family reunion many years later and it s a littleinteresting but I didn t find all the answers I was looking for, in fact it left me evenconfused For much of the story, the narrator is a 1 month baby, but she knows about things that happen around her and even in places she is not present this despite it being clear that she s an outcast in her family and nobody ever told her anything about her childhood How does she know all of it then Then, in much of the action she is 5 years old but in her adulthood she seems to recall things from that time with amazing detail The endless descriptions of dirty objects come to mindAnother thing that I didn t like was the way the writer introduced dialogue She obviously never heard of hyphens so the only indicator of a voice was a new paragraph Finally, even though throughout the whole book the narrator is Dol in the 1st person, we can also get inside the minds of the other characters from a 3rd person perspective, especially in the 2nd part of book Very confusing change of perspective Probably not an author I will be turning to again, I m afraid, and also not a book that made me want to visit Cardiff This is an amazingly powerful novel about a struggling working class family in Cardiff, Wales It begins in the early 60 s and travels to the end of the nineties using the various horrifying revelations in the memory of Dolores, the youngest sibling in a family of six daughters, to move the tale forward Poverty, immorality, superstition, mental illness and illiteracy set the stage for abuse, neglect, dysfunction and deprivation that defies the imagination Each successive memory is progressivel This is an amazingly powerful novel about a struggling working class family in Cardiff, Wales It begins in the early 60 s and travels to the end of the nineties using the various horrifying revelations in the memory of Dolores, the youngest sibling in a family of six daughters, to move the tale forward Poverty, immorality, superstition, mental illness and illiteracy set the stage for abuse, neglect, dysfunction and deprivation that defies the imagination Each successive memory is progressively worse than the one preceding it.This book will have a profound effect on the reader This is not a book one will easily forget as it exposes the wounded family with all of its fatal flaws the children and the parents are all scarred by something There is physical abuse, human trafficking in which a child is bartered into slavery, another sent to foster care, another beaten brutally, another permanently injured in tragic circumstances, all tortured by each other in one way or another, as well as by society Even those that escape the environment bear the marks and damage of memories they try to suppress The depths to which some will sink in order to survive, for purely selfish reasons, will astound the reader The inability of others to live and or fulfill their natural family obligations, as they are thwarted by life s haphazard circumstances, will pain the reader They cannot find a way out of their circumstances so their dreams and enormous obligations remain unfulfilled Their stories will keep one turning pages Ignorance and superstition stifled and destroyed many lives This book opens a window onto their suffering If you read it, you will not be sorry, although you will surely be extremely saddened to learn of the hopelessness that existed for these characters at so many stages of their lives The one part of the book that disturbed me deeply, was that the kindest, often unjustly, suffered the most, while the guilty often escaped punishment, although their actions caused monumental suffering for others Perhaps that is true to life, unfortunately the guilty often do get away unscathed leaving a trail of misery in their wake I ve wanted to read this book for ages not just because it got good reviews and was shortlisted for the Booker prize in 2000, but because I m Maltese so it follows that I m very interested in anyone of Maltese descent who is a successful writer.I had read some excellent reviews of this when it first came out so I had very high expectations I did enjoy the sensuous use of language and the author s talent for evoking the sense of place and time, but I nevertheless had a few rather childish issues I ve wanted to read this book for ages not just because it got good reviews and was shortlisted for the Booker prize in 2000, but because I m Maltese so it follows that I m very interested in anyone of Maltese descent who is a successful writer.I had read some excellent reviews of this when it first came out so I had very high expectations I did enjoy the sensuous use of language and the author s talent for evoking the sense of place and time, but I nevertheless had a few rather childish issues with the content of the book Firstly, I read in an interview with the author that she never actually knew anyone similar to Frank Gauci arguably the main antagonist in the novel and I couldn t help feeling slightly short changed that she had depicted this Maltese immigrant as such a cruel and abusive husband and father as well as a crappy friend There were points when the novel almost took on the tone of misery lit Secondly, would it have been so terrible to have used Maltese words and phrases rather than Italian ones These could have been easily explained in little footnotes I resent the idea that Italian and Maltese are interchangeable

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *