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The Ninth Hour: A Novel por Alice McDermott
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The Ninth Hour: A Novel (original 2017; edição 2018)

por Alice McDermott (Autor)

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
6814125,965 (3.77)53
WINNER OF TEH PRIX FEMINA ETRANGER 2018SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2017 KIRKUS PRIZEONE OF TIME MAGAZINE'S TOP TEN BOOKS OF 2017From the National Book Award-winning author comes a luminous, deeply humane novel about three generations of an Irish immigrant family in 1940s and 1950s Brooklyn - for fans of Anne Tyler, Anne Enright and Colm TóibínOn a gloomy February afternoon, Jim sends his wife Annie out to do the shopping before dark falls. He seals their meagre apartment, unhooks the gas tube inside the oven, and inhales. Sister St. Saviour, a Little Nursing Sister of the Sick Poor, catches the scent of fire doused with water and hurries to the scene: a gathered crowd, firemen, and the distraught young widow. Moved by the girl's plight, and her unborn child, the wise nun finds Annie work in the convent's laundry - where, in turn, her daughter will grow up amidst the crank of the wringer and the hiss of the iron. In Catholic Brooklyn in the early part of the twentieth century, decorum, superstition and shame collude to erase Jim's brief existence; and yet his suicide, although never mentioned, reverberates through many generations - testing the limits of love and sacrifice, of forgiveness and forgetfulness. In prose of startling radiance and precision, Alice McDermott tells a story that is at once wholly individual and universal in its understanding of the human condition. Rendered with remarkable lucidity and intelligence, The Ninth Hour is the crowning achievement of one of today's finest writers.… (mais)
Membro:nobert63
Título:The Ninth Hour: A Novel
Autores:Alice McDermott (Autor)
Informação:Picador (2018), Edition: Reprint, 256 pages
Colecções:books read 2021
Avaliação:
Etiquetas:Nenhum(a)

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The Ninth Hour por Alice McDermott (2017)

  1. 10
    Someone por Alice McDermott (vancouverdeb)
    vancouverdeb: historical fiction in Brooklyn. The everyday vagaries of life, told in beautiful language. Both books feature Irish Catholics and tragedy mixed with hope.
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I learned three things about Alice McDermott after reading this novel of hers. First, she has a very low opinion of women. Second, she has a seething hatred for all things Catholic. And, third, she belongs to that growing population of writers who firmly (albeit inaccurately) believe that the baser their language and the more offensive their content, the wittier and more sophisticated their books sound.

The Ninth Hour truly does represent a rampage of tastelessness and vulgarity that the discerning reader will find unbearable.

Do we really need graphic descriptions of a one-legged amputee’s menstrual blood and armpit hair? Of course not, but that is the kind of unnecessarily crass and bawdy content that gets dished out in spades throughout the narrative of this book. McDermott has a prurient fixation on bodily functions that would keep a psychoanalyst busy for decades.

Based on the synopsis on the back cover of this book, one would expect to read a heartfelt tale examining how one person’s suicide creates a ripple effect throughout his community and across the generations, but that is not what the reader gets. The Ninth Hour is actually a pretentious, meandering look at an early 20th century Brooklyn neighborhood told through a cacophony of voices from a confusing jumble of unidentified narrators.

Sally, her mother, and a group of nuns are the principle characters in this disorganized mess of a novel. All of the characters—major & minor—are two-dimensional and superficial; and not one of them is in the least bit appealing or even remotely sympathetic.

Sally is a vapid mimic who has no personality or thought processes of her own.

Sally’s mother is a stereotypical cardboard cutout of the dreary widow who works hard to raise her daughter while indulging in a lascivious fling with the grotesque & unhappily married neighborhood milkman.

All of the nuns are described in various ways as physically repugnant, self-absorbed, pugnacious, wretched, and contemptuous of the Church they serve.

And, for some odd reason, the author weaves a thinly veiled undertone of rampant nymphomania throughout the entire convoluted plotline.

The only point this incredibly pointless novel manages to convey is the clear message that pretty girls have no business entering the religious life, and only ugly, unwanted women should be in convents—hardly an inspirational or life-affirming sentiment.

With all of the hateful and vacuous characters surrounding him, the only real question left for the reader to answer is why Sally’s father didn’t kill himself sooner. ( )
  shokei | Aug 30, 2021 |
Alice McDermott has created a particularly rich, nuanced world with this one. From the various Little Nursing Sisters of the Sick Poor whose inner lives she vividly evokes, to the slightly mysterious, only vaguely described narrators who look back on most of the events of the story via stories they were told themselves, to the many other major and minor players in this drama, McDermott captures something essential and telling with each one. The Ninth Hour is not a light read by any stretch, but it's a very good one. Sister Jeanne just about broke my heart.

Good interview here: https://www.kirkusreviews.com/features/alice-mcdermott/ ( )
  CaitlinMcC | Jul 11, 2021 |
Clearly this book resonates with Catholic (or at least raised Catholic) readers, especially Irish Catholic. I am a convinced atheist with a decades-long fascination with the monastic life (linked to my art-history student days), and friendly relations with a community of Dominican sisters. I have not read McDermott before, but the reviews on this one - and the subject matter - attracted me. I was not disappointed.

McDermott paints a vivid - if sometimes labored - portait of a particular neighborhood in a particular place and time: Women deeply entrapped in sexuality and childbearing, with very few options for anything else; men entrapped in the need to put food on the table, but not at the expense of their own pleasures. The nuns belong to another world, rejecting these entrapments, but also irredeemably subservient, and internalizing their subservience. Still, it is clothed in glorious images, of a rose-scented heaven, of easing suffering as the "clean cloth, immaculate and pure, to place against mankind's wounds." The nuns and and neighborhood women eye each other, curious, repectful, sometimes suspicious, attracted and repelled at the same time. The nuns are subject to petty jealousies and frustrations; Annie and Sally are drawn to the nun's path. Poor Sally - dressed up un a nun's tunic for a joke, a stray sunbeam falls upon her and everyone (including her) sees a miraculous transformation. So off she goes to Chicago to join the motherhouse as a novice, on a train trip straight out of Dante. That clean pure cloth sounded great, but not if it's to be pressed against this foul nightmare of humanity.

This is the best part of McDermott's novel: there are many "BIG things" to think about. Grief, loneliness, self-sacrifice, guilt, redemption, exploitation, abuse, love, tolerance, acceptance. And this isn't even an very long novel. It would be even shorter had she not tried quite so hard to give us a full sensory portrait of every scene: sounds, effects of light, smells, all detailed - and often beautifully - but perhaps a bit too much. The story shifts back and forth in time, which is not terribly hard to follow, but a "chorus" of "we" obtrudes on occasion, creating a complicated network of relationships and cousins and great aunts (and a poignant boarder from a long-ago generation). The pace is slow: this is not a page-turner. But it is thoughtful, exploratory, sympathetic and often very lovely. ( )
  JulieStielstra | May 17, 2021 |
If you like your books full of detailed descriptions of menstruation, bowel movements, and body hair, then this is the book for you; if not, go elsewhere. ( )
  missterrienation | Apr 6, 2021 |
Set mostly in early 20th century New York (I think), this story focuses on faith, sacrifice and its real and perceived power, and growing up surrounded by these two concepts. The descriptions are beautiful, and especially the characters of the nuns are quite endearing. ( )
  WiebkeK | Jan 21, 2021 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 41 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
In “The Ninth Hour,” Alice McDermott has taken the risk of writing about nuns, and the risk has been more than worth it. Known and admired for her portrayal of Irish-American family life, she has now extended her range and deepened it, allowing for more darkness, more generous lashings of the spiritual...Although I admire the sweep of “The Ninth Hour,” I’m uneasy with McDermott’s storytelling strategy. One of Sally’s children narrates intermittently, but for the literal-minded among us it seems unlikely that a third party could provide the intimate details that so enrich the novel, or be so familiar with the other characters’ inner lives.And what McDermott achieves most splendidly is the hyper-realistic portrayal of the grim, often disgusting aspects of illness and death among the poor:
 
McDermott, who frequently writes about Irish-American communities, has as much affection for her characters as they have for one another. Although the plot can be bleak, it offers just enough warmth to nurture hope....But it's the way she marries the spirit to the physical world that makes her work transcendent...The Ninth Hour is a story with the simple grace of a votive candle in a dark church.
 
The Ninth Hour,” Alice McDermott’s superb and masterful new novel, begins with a suicide and culminates in murder. The book’s real thrills, though, are in the feats of its storytelling. ..There are so many ways to read this beautiful novel: as a Greek tragedy with its narrative chorus and the sins of the fathers; as a Faulknerian tale out to prove once more that the “past is not even past”; as a gothic tale wrestling with faith, punishment and redemption à la Flannery O’Connor; or as an Irish novel in the tradition of Anne Enright and Colm Tóibín, whose sentences, like hers, burn on the page.
 

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Alice McDermottautor principaltodas as ediçõescalculated
Plimpton, MarthaNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado

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WINNER OF TEH PRIX FEMINA ETRANGER 2018SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2017 KIRKUS PRIZEONE OF TIME MAGAZINE'S TOP TEN BOOKS OF 2017From the National Book Award-winning author comes a luminous, deeply humane novel about three generations of an Irish immigrant family in 1940s and 1950s Brooklyn - for fans of Anne Tyler, Anne Enright and Colm TóibínOn a gloomy February afternoon, Jim sends his wife Annie out to do the shopping before dark falls. He seals their meagre apartment, unhooks the gas tube inside the oven, and inhales. Sister St. Saviour, a Little Nursing Sister of the Sick Poor, catches the scent of fire doused with water and hurries to the scene: a gathered crowd, firemen, and the distraught young widow. Moved by the girl's plight, and her unborn child, the wise nun finds Annie work in the convent's laundry - where, in turn, her daughter will grow up amidst the crank of the wringer and the hiss of the iron. In Catholic Brooklyn in the early part of the twentieth century, decorum, superstition and shame collude to erase Jim's brief existence; and yet his suicide, although never mentioned, reverberates through many generations - testing the limits of love and sacrifice, of forgiveness and forgetfulness. In prose of startling radiance and precision, Alice McDermott tells a story that is at once wholly individual and universal in its understanding of the human condition. Rendered with remarkable lucidity and intelligence, The Ninth Hour is the crowning achievement of one of today's finest writers.

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