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Hood: A Novel
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am 8. September 1999
Set in Ireland, and told in the first person, the story opens with Penelope, called Pen, dealing with the sudden death of her one and only love, Cara Wall.
Cara was away in Greece with some lesbian friends when she was killed in a car accident. Pen is living in the house of Cara's father.
Pen and Cara have been lovers since their Catholic schoolgirl days at Immaculate, and Pen is now a 5th grade teacher at Immac--as it is called by its former students. While their relationship was the grand passion of their lives, we learn that it was riddled with infidelities, and separations.
Cara was becoming very out, while Pen remained very closeted. Also flavoring the story is the fact Cara's older sister, Kate, was actually Pen's first crush, and Kate has now returned from America for Cara's funeral. The book is well-written. Definitely not a fluff piece.
The title refers to all the "hoods" that are a part of Pen's life--girlhood, womanhood, spinsterhood, and now widowhood.
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am 8. März 1999
I came to this book through a book club, and I'm glad I did. It's not a book I would have ordinarily picked up, but sticking with it was well worth it. The prose is a bit dense at times, but it just attests to the book's richness. Hood's seven chapters are organized by the seven days Pen experiences right after her lover's death, but the flashbacks, dreams, and memories make it a full, lengthy story, and the organization lets us into the heart and mind of a character. I recommend this book, especially for readers who like books that focus on one particular, strong character.
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am 2. September 1998
This book is truly a gem. I randomally picked it up, and it was the best buy I've had in awhile. Donoghue paints a marvelous portrait of Pen O'Grady, a woman who must come to terms with the loss of her lover of 14 years. While some readers will identify with Pen's struggle with her sexuality, others will recognize the universal theme of dealing with loss. The book can be a bit slow in parts, but your patience will be well rewarded. Definetely buy this book
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am 9. Januar 2000
This is one of the finest works of fiction that I have read in quite a while. Usually I do not read "lesbian" fiction as I take my disappointment with the writing much too personally. This book is so painfully sad, and yet so beautifully evocative that I rank it among my favorites of all authors. This writer - new to me with this read - is outstanding - and I am ordering her other books.
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am 14. Juli 2000
I want all of her books! This is a story you don't want to end. It covers all ranges of human emotion with a twist. I regret that the majority of lesbians in this book enjoy more bed hopping than stable, loving relationships. The main character of the book is so identifiable, so loving that I cried when she cried and laughed when she laughed! I would recommend this book to all of my friends!
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am 8. Juni 2000
I bought this book on a whim when living in London and wound up writing numerous essays on it for my graduate degree. The book is poignant and true--the pain that Pen feels for the loss of Cara, as well as the realization that her identity has been lost both by being with Cara and with being widowed suddenly, is heartbreaking for anyone to read, gay or straight.
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am 29. August 1998
I really loved this book, i totally related because i did do some of the things that they did. When i was reading i would doze off thinking of the times i had with my girlfriend. It didnt end how wanted it to but that doesnt mean it was a horrible ending. i would recomend this book.
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