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The Origin Of Species (2008)

by Nino Ricci(Favorite Author)
3.01 of 5 Votes: 2
0385663609 (ISBN13: 9780385663601)
Doubleday Canada
review 1: Read this as an ebook, and knew that it was long but did not realize the immensity of the novel until after reading various reviews. Extremely well-written, Ricci is definitely GG material although I am a little surprised that he won one for The a Origin of Species. Loved him speaking about an era (80s) in my recent memory and during which I was partially in a similar headspace as Alex. The novel is compartmentalized, as are most of our lives. I preferred the compartments dealing with Esther, his MS-ridden friend, to whom Alex shows compassion, and discussion of his relationship with the Swedish mother of his child, Ingrid...two sides of Alex...compassion and narcissism and selfishness.The book was a little to sprawling but was epic in its scope.
review 2:
... moreInteresting premise about a self-absorbed grad student trying to finish his PhD, living in Montreal during the turbulent 1980's. A terrible sense of ennui seems to hang over him and he basically seems to have given up. He reminded me a little of Mersaud in Camus' L'etranger. The novel is mostly set in Montreal but then Alex takes off to the Galapagos Islands, where he has a most harrowing adventure with a despicable man Desmond; you'll cringe at parts of that. Lots of minor characters that sift in and out of the narrative, probably too many, some of which appear superfluous. I thought the book was a little too ambitious and could have been pared down by maybe 75 pages or so, and it wouldn't have lost a thing. I should mention that Ricci himself came to my bookclub and we talked about this very book. I really, really like the guy - he's a true gentleman, very cordial and friendly. And you know, he's a fabulous writer, maybe not as appreciated locally as much as I feel he should.I must admit that I liked his Lives of the Saints (and his trilogy) much better that this Origin book, but I also feel this book is worth reading. less
Reviews (see all)
I found it a little slow. Good characterization, but still slow.
That's two hours of my life I won't get back.
This book was a struggle, but I finished it.
A wonderful, insightful novel...
not worth reading
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