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eBook Summer Without Men ePub

eBook Summer Without Men ePub

by Siri Hustvedt

  • ISBN: 1444710524
  • Category: Literary
  • Subcategory: Literature
  • Author: Siri Hustvedt
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Sceptre (March 1, 2011)
  • Pages: 224
  • ePub book: 1679 kb
  • Fb2 book: 1319 kb
  • Other: txt azw rtf docx
  • Rating: 4.8
  • Votes: 804

Description

Also by Siri Hustvedt.

Also by Siri Hustvedt. Sometime after he said the word pause, I went mad and landed in the hospital. The banality of the story-the fact that it is repeated every day ad nauseam by men who discover all at once or gradually that what IS does not HAVE TO BE and then act to free themselves from the aging women who have taken care of them and their children for years-does not mute the misery, jealousy, and humiliation that comes.

Justine Jordan admires Siri Hustvedt's joyful exploration of changing female identities. Hustvedt makes it all seem effortless. Mia rages and repents, but she never loses her mordant sense of humour. I took it like a woman," she writes of her husband's decision to move in with the Pause.

So begins Siri Hustvedt’s novel The Summer Without Me. The Summer Without Men is a beautifully written book with many layers. The "Pause" Mia's husband asks for in their marriage (so he can cheat without guilt) that tips her over into madness is just one of them

So begins Siri Hustvedt’s novel The Summer Without Men. He is Boris, renowned rat-scientist and husband of thirty years to Mia Friedricksen – poet, professor, mother, and central character in the story. The "Pause" Mia's husband asks for in their marriage (so he can cheat without guilt) that tips her over into madness is just one of them. Aging, coming of age, and female identity and all that it entails are also richly developed themes in the book. I loved the characters in The Summer Without Men and found them to be realistically written.

The Summer Without Men book.

The Summer Without Men. For Frances Cohen

The Summer Without Men. For Frances Cohen. The banality of the story - the fact that it is repeated every day ad nauseam by men who discover all at once or gradually that what IS does not HAVE TO BE and then act to free themselves from the aging women who have taken care of them and their children for years - does not mute the misery, jealousy, and humiliation that comes.

Siri Hustvedt (born February 19, 1955) is an American novelist and essayist. Hustvedt is the author of a book of poetry, seven novels, two books of essays, and several works of non-fiction

Siri Hustvedt (born February 19, 1955) is an American novelist and essayist. Hustvedt is the author of a book of poetry, seven novels, two books of essays, and several works of non-fiction.

Siri Hustvedt nother like popcorn kernels in a microwave bag. I made this sorry observation as I lay on my bed in the South Unit, so heavy with Haldol I hated to move. The nasty rhythmical voices had grown softer, but they hadn’t disappeared, and when I closed my eyes I saw cartoon characters racing across pink hills and disappearing into blue forests.

SIRI HUSTVEDT was born in 1955 in Northfield, Minnesota. She moved to New York City in 1978 and earned her P. in English literature at Columbia University in 1986. She is the author of several novels, including The Sorrows of an American, What I Loved, The Enchantment of Lily Dahl, and The Blindfold, as well as the collections of essays, A Plea for Eros, Mysteries of the Rectangle, and The Shaking Woman or A History of My Nerves.

At under 200 pages, The Summer Without Men is sprightly and frisky, even as it contends with life-and-death . Perhaps the problem is that Hustvedt herself might not find a summer without men particularly stimulating.

At under 200 pages, The Summer Without Men is sprightly and frisky, even as it contends with life-and-death subjects. Mia breaks into all-cap outbursts. The problem was that any number of Borises were in my head. She cheats on her concept by giving Mia an e-mail stalker who signs himself Mr. Nobody and proves more on her intellectual wavelength than the gals in Bonden. His notes hopped from Leibniz’s ‘Monadology’ to Heisenberg and Bohr in Copenhagen to Wallace Stevens almost without taking a breath.

Comments

Kale Kale
“Sometime after he said the word pause, I went mad and landed in the hospital.” So begins Siri Hustvedt’s novel The Summer Without Men. “He” is Boris, renowned rat-scientist and husband of thirty years to Mia Friedricksen – poet, professor, mother, and central character in the story.

After her brief stay in a mental hospital, Mia leaves her Brooklyn home for the summer and returns to childhood hometown, a Minnesota backwater called Bonden, in hopes of putting herself back together and to give her husband his pause. In Bonden, she becomes acquainted with a Garrison Keillor Prairie’s worth of companions. The Swans: five widows who form the bedrock of bookclub at Rolling Meadows East, one of which is Mia’s mother. Seven teen girls for whom Mia agrees to teach a poetry workshop. Lola, the young mother next door, and her children.

Hustvedt is brilliant as she deftly mixes stories of these associates, phone conversations with her therapist, and email exchanges with the mysterious Mr. Nobody – and, later, with the Pauser himself – along with personal rants, memories, poems, philosophy, literary theory and criticism, and riffs on neuroscience. Mia uses all these tools to rediscover herself, and to both teach and learn from these experiences.

There is a good bit of gender philosophy throughout, but Hustvedt utilizes a humor throughout makes some of her sharp points significantly less painful. In short, we feel for these characters. We feel for Mia, and we see bits of her reflected in the lives of those she befriends; in her elderly friend, Abigail, with her lonely, private amusements; in the coven of girls learning to navigate relationships; in Lola’s rocky marriage.

The sheer number of characters can at times make it difficult to keep up with, and there were parts where I wish Hustvedt had told us more of the details of the story. That said, some of the best parts of the novel are not in the story proper, but in the fourth wall breaking asides to her Dear Reader, in the lengthy scientific and philosophic excursions, in the unusual and colorful word choices, and in the well placed quotes or poems. And despite any deficit in narrative, she does deliver a happy ending payoff (of sorts). After all, while the subject matter might be heavy, in its heart, this novel is a comedy. Because, as Mia says:

“There are tragedies and there are comedies, aren’t there? And they are often more the same than different, rather like men and women, if you ask me. A comedy depends on stopping the story at exactly the right moment.”

Overall, a very re-readable novel.
Malalrajas Malalrajas
The Summer Without Men is a beautifully written book with many layers. The "Pause" Mia's husband asks for in their marriage (so he can cheat without guilt) that tips her over into madness is just one of them. Aging, coming of age, and female identity and all that it entails are also richly developed themes in the book.

I loved the characters in The Summer Without Men and found them to be realistically written. I was a bit disappointed, though, that while the book was supposed to be a book about being without men, men were the central focus. Not just Mia's husband, but her neighbor's abusive husband and Mia's father. Still, I enjoyed how Mia got to know both her mother and her father better throughout the book as her mother revealed truths of her marriage to Mia's father to her daughter. I enjoyed the elderly women characters in the book, as well as the younger ones. The younger women characters in the book seemed just as realistic to me as the older ones. Mia's interactions with the older women and the younger ones in the book showed her to be right in the middle, at an age where she had both things to teach and things to be learned.

What I loved most about the book was Mia's humor. I loved that she addresses the reader directly, and you can tell she has a twinkle in her eye when she does. Her ability to see the humor of her situation and her reaction to it completely won me over and made overlooking any flaws and stereotypes worth it.

Though I'm sure that The Summer Without Men will not be everyone's cup of team, I am very glad I read this book and will certainly read more books by the author. I don't think it's on par with What I Loved, but it is a very good book with some absolutely brilliant writing that made any shortcomings worth bearing for me.
Gozragore Gozragore
Siri Hustvedt gives the reader a clear eyed view of old age through her 90 year old mother and friends in the retirement community, her own slightly later than midlife crisis and a surprisingly clear perspective of adolescent girls, their cruelty to one another and what lies behind it.
Recommended to me by a Norwegian friend, it's a woman's story and too true for many. The author succeeds in giving us a realistic picture of being a woman in today's society without being unremittingly grim. Lively characters and an unresolved ending make this a great summer read.
Yadon Yadon
Mia is a very intelligent and well educated poet and professor who suffers a brief period of temporary insanity when her husband requests a 'pause' in their relationship so he may have a dalliance with one of his colleagues.

Hustvedt's novel felt like a brief history of womanhood, feminism and a woman's place in society. It was very interesting to see these themes dissected and analyzed in the context of a broken marriage and mental illness.

Hustvedt is obviously a very intelligent author but she tries too hard to impress and unfortunately comes off as pretentious. The book is also dragged down by the protagonist's overwhelming pessimism. Hustvedt makes acute commentary on female friendships and relationships but the book never manages to resonate with the reader because it is written with a lack of warmth. This book is great for readers looking for "chick lit" with brains.
Moronydit Moronydit
A very literary piece of work with many references to classic literary works, good character development, interesting main plot and subplots. A summer about healing and the importance of having supportive, nurturing relationships. I have a doctorate in psychology, and still encountered many words I needed to look up in the dictionary.