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The Dead Father's Club [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Matt Haig

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5. Juni 2007
A brilliant new novel from the acclaimed author of The Last Family in England.

Philip Noble is an eleven-year-old in crisis. His pub landlord-father has died in a road accident and his mother is succumbing to the greasy charms of her dead husband’s brother, Uncle Alan. The remaining certainties of Philip’s life crumble away when his father’s ghost appears in the pub and declares Uncle Alan murdered him.

Arming himself with weapons from the school chemistry cupboard, Philip vows to carry out the ghost’s relentless demands for revenge. But will Leah, the gorgeous daughter of Uncle Alan’s God-fearing business partner, Mr. Fairview, prove too much of a distraction? And can the words of a ghost be trusted any more than the lies of the living? Philip makes his decision and when the moment comes to act, he finds himself hurtling towards disaster.

Just as Matt Haig’s acclaimed and best-selling first novel, The Last Family in England, was a brilliant reworking of Henry IV Part I, with dogs in the major roles, so The Dead Fathers’ Club gives more than a nod to Hamlet. Hilariously funny, it is full of poignant insights into the strange workings of the world seen through the eyes of a child.

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The story of Hamlet is not usually thought of as one meant for laughter. But Matt Haig's able retelling of the tale in The Dead Fathers Club will make you laugh, though it might also evoke a tear. Eleven-year-old Philip Noble is at his father's funeral when who should appear but his father's ghost, who wastes no time in telling Philip that his Uncle Alan, an auto mechanic, tampered with his car, causing the accident that killed him. He warns Philip that Uncle Alan will shortly be tampering with his mother too, because Unctuous Uncle Alan wants the pub that Philip's father owned.

The solution to this problem, according to Philip's dad, is that he must kill Uncle Alan. If he doesn't do it before Dad's next birthday, 11 weeks away, Dad will be consigned to the Terrors for all eternity. Philip agrees, in principle, but killing someone, especially without getting caught, isn't easy. But a promise is a promise, so Philip gives it a whirl, in fact, several whirls. Real life interferes in the persons of two school bullies, truly nasty and perverse thugs, who seem ready to kill Philip because they think it's funny that his father died. Philip also falls in love, and his Ophelia (named Leah) thinks that shoplifting is tons of fun. Poor Philip is in over his head in every way possible. There are many encounters with other Dead Fathers in a great sendup of ghostly dealings, Hamlet-like, on the moors, and several sly references to the play. There is even a character named Dane. The ending is not pure Shakespeare, but it is pure Haig and that is very good indeed. --Valerie Ryan -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Gebundene Ausgabe .


“Humorous and original. This is one of those crossover books like The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.”
Daily Mail

“The story is quirky and despite obvious plot similarities to Hamlet, it is highly original.”
Nottingham Evening Post

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Amazon.com: 4.1 von 5 Sternen  28 Rezensionen
8 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Pure voice in a boldly written tale sparks magic 29. Juli 2007
Von perrygirlblue - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Loved it! Once started, it was one of those books I really looked forward to the time I could spend enjoying it. Haig's way of letting Philip tell his tale is bold and refreshing. I found the writing style intuitive rather than bothersome (and I'm an editor); it was an easy, quick read.

Haig has an incredible knack for resurging in us the bittersweet feelings and perspective of being a preteen--life's general confusion, uncertainty, anxiety, innocence and wonder--even if you didn't have to deal with deaths at that age!

While there were funny parts throughout, the chapter toward the end with the grandmother Nan and Philip was brilliantly hilarious. I would like to read that chapter again and again just for the kicks it gives on its own. Anyone who's had an elder family member in their midst can relate.

Big thanks and kudos to Matt Haig for writing this one--and doing it just the way he did.
5 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Affecting 18. November 2007
Von Emily Baker - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
The conceit of this book - Hamlet, in the form of a modern-day 11-year-old English kid - is a interesting lark. If you know nothing about Hamlet, you can enjoy this book about a troubled kid dealing with his own and his mother's grief (and school bullies), though it will seem very dark if you're unaware of the plotline to come. But the more you remember about the play, the more you'll enjoy it. You'll recognize Gertrude, Polonius, Ophelia, Rosencrantz & Guildenstern, several key plot points and settings and speeches. And of course Philip's problems are the exact same as Hamlet's. I initially enjoyed the parallels, but as I drew nearer to the end of the book I got very concerned because, obviously, you hope for a happier ending for this kid. My lips are sealed at the ending, but I will say I did not regret reading the book.

Other points
- It is extremely ambiguous whether or not the dad's ghost is real. I think trying to figure this out was the most interesting part of the book. I'm still not certain. Very cleverly done.
- This is told using the logic and grammar of a kid going through a trauma. "Curious Incident" is a much better book that uses this same device. I loved that book. In this book, the run-on sentences and odd logical flow were very effective sometimes, but at other times I found them to be annoying/distracting. If you can't stand books that don't use standard conventions like quotation marks, this is not the book for you. Or maybe try the audiobook version.
- I enjoyed this book, but I honestly didn't find it to be funny. Maybe you have to be English to get some of the humor? Philip does make some keen observations which from adult perspective are witty. But there was much more tension in this book than humor to me.
7 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Reminded me of THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHTTIME 9. März 2007
Von Dave Schwinghammer - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
THE DEAD FATHER'S CLUB is loosely based on Shakespeare's HAMLET. Eleven-year-old Philip Noble loses his father in a car accident. Shortly thereafter, Brian Noble begins appearing to his son as a ghost, telling him his brother Alan had tampered with the brakes. Brian wants Philip to kill his brother.

The Shakespeare allusion continues when Alan begins to pursue Philip's mother. There's even a TV movie that's a lot like the play in Hamlet. Alan also begins to interfere in Brian's former business, a pub called the Castle and Falcon.

The similarity between the Shakespearean play and Haig's book ends with the narrator. We're not sure if Philip really sees his father's ghost or if he's having a nervous breakdown. The ghost also isn't that reliable. He keeps getting Philip in trouble.

Philip has a number of tormenters besides his father's ghost, mainly two bullies, Dominic Weekly and Jordan Harper, who refer to him as "schizo." They are relentless. They pursue Philip all over the school and out into the neighborhood. About the only time the ghost actually helps Philip is during a Rugby match.

I had some problems with a scene where Philip does an awfully advanced chemistry experiment for an eleven-year-old, but I imagine Haig needed it for plot purposes. There are also some philosophical meanderings that seem beyond a young boy. During one of Philip's emotional traumas Philips thinks to himself: "I thought why am I me why am I not a fish why am I not a loaf of bread why am I alive and most people are dead how do I know Im me how do I know Im alive . . ." That said, Haig does a fantastic job with Philip's "voice." His inability to make up his mind about just about everything is entirely appropriate for an eleven-year-old as well as Hamlet. One of the blurbs compares the book to THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHTIME. I could certainly see the similarity

The ending will bother some people since Haig leaves us hanging in one important respect, but I thought, considering the story content, it was entirely appropriate.
7 von 9 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Von Gail Cooke - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
British writer Matt Haig makes his American debut with The Dead Fathers Club, a story that owes a bit to Shakespeare (Hamlet) and a great deal to Haig's fertile imagination, humor, and ability to tug on heartstrings.

Protagonist Philip Noble is an 11-year-old boy who lives above a pub, the Castle and Falcon, which his family owns. He has just lost his father. Death came in an automobile accident but Philip's father isn't totally gone as he appears to Philip at his wake.

It seems that when fathers are murdered they become members of the Dead Fathers Club, and this is not an association that Philip's dad wished to join. He informs his son that his death was not an accident but was planned by sneaky, conniving Uncle Alan, an auto mechanic, who put the kibosh on his car. Further, Philip is told that he must avenge his dad's death and he must do it rather quickly - before his late father's next birthday.

Now, this is a pretty tall order for a young boy who is already having difficulty dealing with life let alone death. There are school bullies, pretty girls, lessons to be done, panic attacks to be overcome and other attendant vicissitudes of simply being a pre-teen boy.

Nonetheless, when he realizes that the villainous Alan has eyes for his mother and to taking over the pub, Philip realizes that something must be done.

Twelve-year-old Andrew Dennis won last year's BBC Audiobooks "Voice of Bath" competition, and one knows why when hearing his reading of The Dead Fathers Club. He aptly expresses Philip's doubts, fears, and determination. This is an audiobook that will be enjoyed by both adults and young listeners.

Highly recommended.

- Gail Cooke
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Clever! 28. März 2008
Von Kreestan - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
"Hamlet" is one of my favorite plays -- the morbidity is right up my alley. I really loved Matt Haig's spin on the story. The narrator's innocence allowed for some very funny moments, but the humor somehow fit nicely against the somber premise of a dead father, a broken family, and the tortures of grief. I enjoyed it immensely and couldn't put it down.

This book would have gotten five stars from me, but there were a few things about it that bothered me. Lack of resolution was one. The ending wasn't wholly unsatisfying, but it did leave me with questions that I wish Haig had taken the time to answer. Also, I sometimes found it hard to believe that the narrator was eleven years old. Sometimes he sounded much too young, while other times he seemed to have philosophical wisdom beyond his years. I tried to compare him to the eleven-year-old boys I've met, and he didn't seem too consistent with them.

All in all, though, this was a great story and as long as you're open to an unorthodox style and a few Shakespearian themes, you'll probably enjoy it.
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