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Three Beds in Manhattan (1946)

por Georges Simenon

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MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
5611543,756 (3.36)24
"An actor, recently divorced, at loose ends in New York; a woman, no less lonely, perhaps even more desperate than the man: they meet by chance in an all-night diner and are drawn to each other on the spot. Roaming the city streets, hitting its late-night dives, dropping another coin into yet another jukebox, these two lost souls struggle to understand what it is that has brought them, almost in spite of themselves, together. They are driven?from moment to moment, from bedroom to bedroom?to improvise the most unexpected of love stories, a tale of suspense where risk alone offers salvation. Georges Simenon was the most popular and prolific of the twentieth century's great novelists. Three Bedrooms in Manhattan?closely based on the story of his own meeting with his second wife?is his most passionate and revealing work"--Publisher's description.… (mais)
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Inglês (12)  Francês (2)  Italiano (1)  Todas as línguas (15)
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Some gorgeous city descriptions, but otherwise not for me. ( )
  Amateria66 | May 24, 2024 |
For a slim novel it's taken me an age to get through this book. Part of it was down to being distracted by several non-fiction titles I have on the go as well, but moreover I think it's because I wasn't fully enjoying it.

Simenon writes about a lonely French actor and a Hungarian woman who meet in joint desperation in a seedy bar in New York and the development of their connection into something intense and life-changing over a short period of time that both struggle to understand.

When a book is focused on relatively few characters I need at least to feel empathy for them, even if I don't particularly like them. The male character Francois I found really unlikeable, and although Simenon showed contextualised his jealousy and petty behaviour being driven by self-doubt after his wife ran off with a younger man, he just left me cold with his unpleasant behaviour towards Kay, who seemed prepared to accept and even sympathise with whatever horrible behaviour he sent her way, whether it was punching her in the face or sleeping with someone else when she has to leave for a few days.

I appreciate that Simenon is thought of as being up there as a writer, but he isn't for me. I will happily devour novels from the great misogynist novelists of our time like Hemingway and Updike as I can at least develop some empathy or sympathy for their flawed characters, but this novel just left me a little cold.

3.5 stars - unappetising. ( )
  AlisonY | Oct 15, 2023 |
A very strange and uneven Simenon. At first, the premise is intriguing: a man, Fran�_ois Combe, leaves his flat due to the noise his neighbor and his neighbor���s odd guest make. How Simenon handles city life���and here, more especially, the pulse and feel of Manhattan���is very acute in the opening scenes: how through the thin walls one can ���know��� one���s neighbors, their inner psychologies, their demons, all without having met them in the flesh; how the city streets become a theatre on which an individual can enact and try to avoid his or her turmoil; how public spaces allow for the private to be dramatized rather than hidden from view.������

The latter is the most interesting to me as far as how Simenon handles this: despite the title���s emphasis on interior, private scenes, it is the more public scenes depicting Combe���s increasingly intimate (and, in my reading, increasingly inorganic) relationship with Kay that makes this novel both Simenon and not-Simenon. While there is a stress on psychology, as David suggests, there is too much in the latter part of the novel which results in a very uneven pace, especially for such a short work. I also found the chamber drama and at times claustrophobic dialogue between Combe and Kay to be cliched, oftentimes reminding me of Godard���s films (e.g., Une femme est un femme, Masculin f��minin) but without the certainty of Simenon playing with noir and American genres of pulp. Instead, it feels almost as if Simenon is embracing these rather than playing them off and against one another as he does so well at the start of Three Bedrooms... which ultimately sees the narrative fall quickly into disorder.������

This is definitely a worthy read, but it also is in no way indicative of Simenon���s major themes or concerns in his more successful fiction. In many ways, this feels like an experiment that half works and half doesn���t: for a writer as prolific as Simenon, perhaps we should applaud him for that rather than begrudge it. ( )
  proustitute | Apr 2, 2023 |
François Combe used to be a relatively well-known French actor. Then he fled France after a scandal with his wife and is now trying to make it in New York and learning that noone really cares about French actors (or at least this one). When we first meet him, he is about to flee his very noisy apartment - he cannot sleep, he cannot think so he goes out to clear his head. Then he ends up in a bar, meets a woman, Kay, and ends up walking the city with her before both of them end up in a hotel room.

It all could have ended here. But instead the two of them get obsessed with each other, each for their own reasons, and their story continues, violent and somehow romantic all at the same time.

The novel is a study in loneliness - both Kay and François are lonely and distrustful and almost cynical. As the story progresses, we learn more of both of their stories although as we see only his viewpoint, Kay's history remains shrouded in places (and her constant refusal to tell the truth does not help matter). Having been humiliated back in France, François is jealous (to the point of ridiculousness) and violent any time when he is unhappy with anything Kay does or says. And yet, they somehow manage to stay together much longer than one expects them to.

The story is based on Simenon's meeting with his second wife and I hope that the violent part were not part of their real life history. Joyce Carol Oates provides an introduction which adds some context (but as usual is spoilery if you never read the novel before).

It is not my favorite Simenon by far but it is a tight psychological novel about loneliness, obsession and what happens when a boy meets a girl and both of them are not at their best. ( )
  AnnieMod | Mar 28, 2023 |
8440221223
  archivomorero | Jun 27, 2022 |
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Nome do autorPapelTipo de autorObra?Estado
Georges Simenonautor principaltodas as ediçõescalculado
Blochman, Lawrence G.Tradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Oates, Joyce CarolIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Romano, MarcTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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He woke up suddenly at 3:00 A.M., dead tired, got dressed, and almost went out without his tie, in slippers, coat collar turned up, like people who walk their dogs late at night or very early in the morning.
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"An actor, recently divorced, at loose ends in New York; a woman, no less lonely, perhaps even more desperate than the man: they meet by chance in an all-night diner and are drawn to each other on the spot. Roaming the city streets, hitting its late-night dives, dropping another coin into yet another jukebox, these two lost souls struggle to understand what it is that has brought them, almost in spite of themselves, together. They are driven?from moment to moment, from bedroom to bedroom?to improvise the most unexpected of love stories, a tale of suspense where risk alone offers salvation. Georges Simenon was the most popular and prolific of the twentieth century's great novelists. Three Bedrooms in Manhattan?closely based on the story of his own meeting with his second wife?is his most passionate and revealing work"--Publisher's description.

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