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Not the End of the World (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 29. September 2003

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  • Taschenbuch: 336 Seiten
  • Verlag: Black Swan; Auflage: New Ed (29. September 2003)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0552771058
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552771054
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 12,7 x 2 x 19,8 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3.5 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (2 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 97.026 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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“Moving and funny and crammed with incidental wisdom.”
-- Sunday Times

"Exceptional... Sharp, witty and completely compelling."
--Daily Mail

"I can think of few writers who can make the ordinary collide with the extraordinary to such beguiling effect... left me so fizzing with admiration."

"An exceptionally funny, quirky and bold writer."
--Independent on Sunday

"Moving and funny, and crammed with incidental wisdom."
--The Sunday Times


A stunning collection of literary and ultra-readable short stories by Whitbread winner Kate Atkinson. -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Gebundene Ausgabe .

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6 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von florida-k am 21. September 2003
Format: Taschenbuch
I've just finished reading Kate Atkinson's "Not the End of the World" and I am simply astonished by how good it was.
Each story was as close to perfection as I have ever know a short story to be. Here you will find everything: good plots, humour, tragedy, though-provoking ideas and some extremely interesting characters.
What I particularly liked is that some of the characters crop up throughout the book, in stories other than their own one. It's perhaps not a new device, but it worked very well here and added yet another dimension to the book as a whole.
"Not the End of the World" must be one of the best collections of short stories I have ever read, and shows Kate Atkinson to be a rare author who can write both novels and short stories to perfection.
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2 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von HORAK am 25. November 2003
Format: Taschenbuch
These short stories were not really enjoyable to me. I found the humour bland, the characters shapeless, the plot in the stories ordinary (to put it mildly...) Short stories by Nadine Gordimer or Raymond Carver are in my view far superior. So it's really not the end of the world, there are many other books to read!
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32 von 33 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Strange and layered book 20. Februar 2005
Von frumiousb - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
The more I think about Not the End of the World, the more the book seems to mean to me. Generally, the progress works the other way around. It says a lot about Atkinson as a writer how powerfully the book manages to keep a hold on my mind.

Atkinson creates a layered confection of characters both real and mythic. They live in a time just bordering the apocalypse. The world in which they live is often shallow and full of troubles, but is beautiful in contrast to the great pit of nothing waiting past the implied boundary. It is not an uplifting book, and when I finished it I was left with a feeling of bleakness. This is time out of time, and it is more frightening than hopeful.

While I do not expect a book to give up its secrets too easily, it did sometimes feel as though Atkinson were being deliberately obscure. Several of the stories had the feel of letters that you find in the street, or a conversation half heard around the corner. She was not generous with the doors into to the developing project of the book. As a reader, there were times when I would have appreciated just a wee bit more transparency.

This is the first Atkinson that I have read. It will not be the last.
19 von 20 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Not Atkinson's best, but a grand ride nonetheless 6. Dezember 2003
Von - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I'm willing to bet that Kate Atkinson didn't color inside the lines when she was a little girl. She's a born subversive, and her charming, alarming, crazy quilt fiction catches the reader off-balance. "Normal" categories get messed with: Realism morphs without warning into fantasy; past, present and future are melded and skewed; people are never quite what they seem. These qualities shone in her first and most brilliant book, BEHIND THE SCENES AT THE MUSEUM (the Whitbread Book of the Year in 1995), as well as in two other novels (HUMAN CROQUET and EMOTIONALLY WEIRD), and they are equally evident in NOT THE END OF THE WORLD, a collection of 12 stories.
The narratives are neither clearly connected nor totally distinct (Atkinson doesn't do anything conventionally). Occasionally she recycles characters: The sullen adolescents whom she evokes with absolutely perfect pitch in "Dissonance" reappear, a few years older but still obnoxious, in "Wedding Favors." More frequently, though, a featured player in one story becomes a peripheral character in another; members of the Zane family, a large American clan, thread their way in and out of several tales, as do a self-absorbed celebrity mom and a nanny who is a worthy successor to Mary Poppins. Detecting these links is wonderfully diverting for the reader --- kind of like a Chinese puzzle --- and it also has the effect of unifying the collection. Atkinson's people all seem to inhabit more or less the same eccentric universe, which is Scotland (she lives in Edinburgh) and at the same time another place: more mysterious, less nameable.
Usually I prefer my "magical" and my "realism" well separated, like carrots and peas on a dinner plate. But Atkinson is so adept and her narrative voice so persuasive that after a while I began to enjoy the sudden shifts from ordinary life to fairy tale, from anxiety to horror, from a bad day to the end of the world. Perhaps her inspiration here is the cult show Buffy the Vampire Slayer (to which the characters in several stories are hopelessly addicted), an odd hybrid of teen TV fare and spookier, more complex life-and-death drama. Take "Temporal Anomaly," wherein a lawyer named Marianne has an unusual out-of-body experience, or the amazing consequences when a woman without a boyfriend adopts a stray in "The Cat Lover." Often, the realistic side of her stories involves broken families and deserted children. In "Tunnel of Fish," "Sheer Big Waste of Love" and "Unseen Translation," we encounter three small, wise, almost painfully controlled boys who are among Atkinson's most touching inventions.
What I didn't like was the epigraphs that precede each story. They're wildly eclectic, ranging from Buffy to Emily Dickinson to classical sources (including untranslated Greek!), but does the book really need another layer of possible meaning? They struck me as irritating rather than enlightening, like program notes that over-explain instead of letting the work speak for itself. And because some are highly esoteric, they give the mistaken impression that you must have a daunting level of scholarship in order to gain entry to the book.
The stories in NOT THE END OF THE WORLD are, in fact, completely accessible --- with the exception of the first and the last, "Charlene and Trudi Go Shopping" and "Pleasureland," intentional bookends for the collection. On one level, these two tales are simply a big fat ironic play on the title phrase, since what's happening is that the world (as we know it) is ending: weather anomalies and epidemics and warfare and no more radio or TV or food, zoo animals running riot and museums left unpoliced so "people wandered in and took the artifacts and used them to improve their interior décor."
The Charlene and Trudi stories (in both cases, they are the sole characters) are a weird cross between high-literary minimalism and a high-end shopping list, itemizing everything from tea to perfume to fabric. Atkinson seems to be pointing out how little "stuff" matters when it comes to the apocalypse, while at the same time glorying in the sheer sound and texture of words and objects. She also jams in a great many references to themes and people mentioned in the rest of the book, as if Charlene and Trudi's dying days (and dying world) contain and transcend everything else. None of this really works --- and it is particularly discouraging to encounter it right off the bat (I almost threw the book across the room). My advice: Skip Charlene and Trudi until you've read everything else.
NOT THE END OF THE WORLD is a grand ride, but I don't think it is Atkinson's best. Too many of the stories, despite their obvious virtuosity, wind up getting by on the author's sarcastic, fantastic riffs and juicy language. She could (dangerously, for her own development) be typecast as wacky rather than deep. I hope she writes another novel next --- preferably about a small boy with profound dignity and a well-concealed longing for love.
--- Reviewed by Kathy Weissman
13 von 13 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
An Anthology Painting the Picture of the End of the World 13. Mai 2004
Von FictionAddiction.NET - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Not the End of the World is an anthology of loosely related pieces. These stories all drift around the common theme of the End of the World. Whether it is on a global scale, or simply changing one's path through life, these World Ending events are never addressed directly. Like so many people, the characters in "Not the End of the World," rarely meet their fate directly. Then again, events that often appear to be the End of the World are not really the end of the world at all.
In keeping with the theme of not facing an event directly, what is most intriguing about these pieces is not the central plot, but rather the peripheral occurrences. For example, in the first piece "Charlene and Trudi Go Shopping," the plot is summed up by the first sentence, "'I want,' Charlene said to Trudi, 'to buy my mother a birthday present.'" In the end, Charlene finds a present; however, that is not what is fascinating about the story. What is fascinating are the details in the periphery hinting that the end of the world is nigh. It is a world where men see how drunk they can get before the curfew, bombs explode in the distance and the city runs out of diesel and gin. But these details do not directly relate to the selection of a birthday present.
In the subsequent pieces, the intriguing peripheral aspects come in the form of defining a larger picture. How are these vignettes related? On the surface, these pieces are related through the relationships between the characters of each story. There is though a deeper relationship, just waiting for reader to tease it out.
Despite the lack of a emphasis on plot, this collection is continuously fascinating. What "Not the End of the World," has to say about life is not something that can be easily expressed. Like any good magician, Kate Atkinson does not reveal how she performs her tricks.
10 von 10 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Too clever, or not clever enough? 31. Januar 2005
Von shoemuse - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
It wasn't until I read the reviews here about "Not the End of the World" that I "got" what Kate Atkinson was trying to do. I went back and re-read the book with an eye toward the myths and the wrapping together of several characters across different stories. To be honest, even the second time around I was not that impressed with the stories. Yes, Kate Atkinson has a unique voice, one I loved in "Behind the Scenes at the Museum". Here, though, I felt like there was an inside conceit that was inaccessible to the reader. It's been a while since I took Latin, so it would've been nice to have the quotes translated. Atkinson teases us with characters that I would've liked to have seen more developed. It was difficult to muster up sympathy for the characters. Overall, if you are a fan of Atkinson's writing I'd say buy this. If you are approaching Atkinson for the first time, you are better starting with "Behind the Scenes at the Museum."
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Mystical 28. Dezember 2003
Von Duke Marine - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
A thoroughly fabulous collection of short stories, the book opens with the very intriguing, ironic tale of two women who seem to be carrying on life as usual while in the middle of apocalyptic chaos. The rest of the stories in the book similarly are a mix of the completely mundane and usual and the mythical and extraordinary. Like the Greek myths updated for our time. On one hand the stories are about single mothers, college students, divorcees, troubled teens, hookers, orphans, nannies, office workers, best friends, and hapless husbands. But on the other they are stories of Eos, Artemis, Selene, mermaids, Nereids, Ra, Hades, and Helios. Kate Atkinson magically weaves these themes together in such a way that you are never bored and can never pinpoint the separation of fantasy from reality.
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