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Alexandra, Gone

Bewertungen:
3.5/5 (15 Bewertungen)
Länge:
378 Seiten
5 Stunden
Herausgeber:
Freigegeben:
Apr 13, 2010
ISBN:
9781439169209
Format:
Buch

Beschreibung

LETTING GO FOR GOOD . . .

Once, Jane Moore and Alexandra Walsh were inseparable, sharing secrets and stolen candy, plotting their futures together. But when Jane became pregnant at seventeen, they drifted slowly apart. Jane has spent the years since raising her son, now seventeen himself, on her own, running a gallery, managing her sister’s art career, and looking after their volatile mother—all the while trying not to resent the limited choices life has given her.

Then a quirk of fate and a faulty elevator bring Jane into contact with Tom, Alexandra’s husband, who has some shocking news. Alexandra disappeared from a south Dublin suburb months ago, and Tom has been searching fruitlessly for her. Jane offers to help, as do the elevator’s other passengers—Jane’s brilliant but self-absorbed sister, Elle, and Leslie Sheehan, a reclusive web designer who’s ready to step back into the world again. And as Jane quickly realizes, Tom isn’t the only one among them who’s looking for something . . . or traveling toward unexpected revelations about love, life, and what it means to let go, in every sense.

In this insightful and irresistible novel, by turns profound, poignant, and laugh- out-loud funny, acclaimed Irish writer Anna McPartlin tells a story of friendship and love, of the families we are born into and the ones we create for ourselves, and of the hope and strength that remain when we fi nd the courage to leave the past behind at last.
Herausgeber:
Freigegeben:
Apr 13, 2010
ISBN:
9781439169209
Format:
Buch

Über den Autor

Anna McPartlin, who was shortlisted for Newcomer of the Year in the 2007 Irish Book Awards, was formerly a stand-up comedian and a cabaret performer. She lives in Dublin with her husband, Donal.


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3.7
15 Bewertungen / 11 Rezensionen
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  • (3/5)
    Anna McPartlin is a new author for me. This novel has been on my TBR stack for a very long time. I found it to be slow-moving even though a couple of the characters were interesting. But most of them weren't and I didn't like them very much. Basically, I felt some of them just needed to get their act together and grow up!The plot centers around one year from the time Alexandra goes missing and the characters who are searching for her. One thing I liked was the humor which helped to keep it light even though the subject of Alexandra being gone was heavy. I didn't care for all the music references throughout the novel; I couldn't see that they added much to the story. I am willing to give this author another try even though this novel wasn't what I was hoping for.
  • (4/5)
    I enjoyed a number of the characters in this book. I found it slow moving however and struggled to get back to it on a couple of occasions. I found the writing style clear and consistent and I did like the music references scattered throughout.

    The simplicity of both the characters and the plot was nice and there were no dramatic inconsistencies but this also made it feel a bit slow in places as there was a "well thats no surprise" feeling about some of the revelations.

    Overall I would recommend this book and I will try more by this author in future as I had not read anything from her before.
  • (1/5)
    Did not finish. Seems too sad.
    Confusing intro about characters and who is who.
  • (2/5)
    Not as good as the first one I read.Alexandra leaves home one day, and is never heard from again.Her husband, Tom, canvas Dublin to try to find her. At a concert, he meets 3 other women who all help him to find his lost wife.Story of these 4 people.Found the musician tie-in with the book really annoying.
  • (4/5)
    My tags for this book are all negative, but the book is actually positive in terms of the ways in which the characters grow and come to terms with the very real challenges they face. I really liked how relative strangers became family and supported each other. Another thing I enjoyed about the novel was that the difficult things that the characters faced didn't go away, but they were able to find new ways to cope and thrive. I found that a very hopeful theme.
  • (5/5)
    Alexandra, Gone by Anna McPartlinPublished by Downtown Press (Division of Simon & Schuster)ISBN 978-1-4391-2333-1At the request of Gallery & Pocket Books, a PB copy was sent, at no cost to me, for my honest opinion. Synopsis (from back of book): Once, Jane Moore and Alexandra Walsh were inseparable, sharing secrets and stolen candy, plotting their futures together. But when Jane became pregnant at seventeen, they drifted slowly apart. Jane has spent the years since raising her son, now seventeen himself, on her own, running a gallery, managing her sister's art career, and looking after their volatile mother-all the while trying not to resent the limited choices life has given her. Then a quirk of fate and a faulty elevator bring Jane into contact with Tom, Alexandra's husband, who has some shocking news, Alexandra disappeared from a south Dublin suburb months ago and Tom has been searching fruitlessly for her. Jane offers to help, as do the elevator's other passengers-Janes's brilliant but self-absorbed sister, Elle and Leslie Sheehan, a reclusive web designer who's ready to step back into the world again. And as Jane quickly realizes Tom isn't the only one among them who's looking for something...or traveling toward unexpected revelations about love, life, and what it means to let go, in every sense. My Thoughts and Opinion: Most books I read, I can't wait to finish it to find out the ending. I was totally ambivalent with this one. I hated to see it end, but then I also wanted to see how it did end. I don't know about you, but, I become part of the story in which I am reading. That is why I didn't want to turn the last page because I became friends with the characters of this book. In Alexandra, Gone, the author writes a story of the lives of many loveable, but at times, troubled characters. I found myself laughing out loud on one page, eyes filling with tears on another, and frustrated with them on yet another. Ms. McPartlin tells a tender, funny, poignant and moving story of friendship, loss, disappointment, pain, denial and love on so many levels. This book is the type of book that you get so engrossed while reading that you are unaware of what is going on around you, at least that is what happened to me. I highly recommend reading Alexandra, Gone and becoming friends with Jane, Elle, Leslie and all the other characters. My Rating: 5
  • (3/5)
    Alexandra, Goneby Anna McPartlin opens with the disappearance of Alexandra one afternoon in Dublin. The reader knows little about her but witnesses her disappearance and the subsequent devastation of her husband, Tom, and her family as they desperately hold out hope that she will be found healthy and safe. While looking for Alexandra, Tom has a chance meeting in a broken elevator with Leslie, Elle and Elle's sister, Jane. The four soon band together in the search for Alexandra and through that process come to know each other and to share their personal tragedies.Each of the four main characters has their own storyline:Jane is raising her teenage son alone but still loves her son's father, her teenage sweetheart. She is the matriarch of her family and takes responsibility for not only her sister Elle's career but the rest of life too - she manages her money, provides her with a home and is the rock upon which Elle relies. In addition to Elle, Jane is responsible for their alcoholic mother who lives with her and is prone to rude outbursts.Elle is the boisterous and unpredictable artist who makes unwise decisions in love and tends to live life in extremes - she is very much the opposite of Jane but their love and affection for each other is clear.Leslie is the solitary remaining living member of her family - cancer has ravaged the family's gene pool and she has lost both parents and two sisters to the disease. She knows she has the faulty gene that led to the early demise of her sisters due to ovarian or breast cancer and she essentially shuts down, closes herself off from people and relationships while she waits for her inevitable diagnosis and early death.Tom is devastated by his young wife's disappearance and his life slowly unravels after she goes missing. His relationship with his in-laws is strained as many of them blame him for her disappearance; as a result, he finds himself increasingly alone in his search for his wife and his desperation until he is trapped in the elevator with the three women who sign on for his search and rally around him.The story is essentially told around the absence of Alexandra - we learn very little about her throughout the novel and the real revelations are in the lives of the four main characters who are tied together in their search for Alexandra. At some point, I found myself almost forgetting about Alexandra as I became more and more drawn into the stories of the four main characters. Because the story is told from the points of view of these four main characters (with a few other minor ones thrown in for good measure), the novel seemed a little choppy to me in the beginning - I felt as if I barely knew any character well enough to care about them and kept wondering when I would learn more about Alexandra. But once I realized that the book was really not about Alexandra and the stories behind each of the four main characters began to unfold, I found I could not put the book down! In the last third of the novel, the revelations come fast and furious for each of the four main characters. Their stories were often very emotional as they dealt with histories of mental illness, sacrificed dreams and the loss of loved ones. I definitely shed a tear or two in the last part of the book.I thoroughly enjoyed this novel - even though some of the themes are quite heavy (death, loss, mental illness), the author infuses the dialogue with humor and quips which helps to lighten the mood of the novel. I am now eager to move onto the other novels by the author currently on my shelf - Pack Up the Moon,Apart from the Crowd, and As Sure As the Sun.
  • (4/5)
    I really liked this book. The title would suggest that it is about Alexandra, and it is to an extent. But the real story involves the other characters and what they go through while trying to find Alexandra. Really the character Alexandra is just a catalyst to pull all of the other characters together. Not to say that Alexandra isn't part of the plot, because the entire book revolves around finding her, but she's not part of the main stories. This book reminded me a bit of a Maeve Binchy novel. Even before I read the author bio, and realized that McPartlin also lives in Ireland. I guess it's a similarity in Irish authors, but luckily Maeve Binchy is one of my favorite authors so being similar to one of her books is a good thing (at least in my opinion). The writing is similar and the dialect is the same. While this story doesn't have a Binchy style happy ending it is still very similar. There was really only one character that I connected with, and that was Leslie. I too have lost family to cancer, and like Leslie am scared every time I go to the doctor that they will find something. Even though I didn't really have a personal connection with the rest of the characters I still liked every one of them. Jane is the levelheaded one. She keeps everyone else "in line" so to speak. Elle is the one that adds drama and excitement to the story. Tom is the one we all want to feel sympathetic for. The rest of the characters help the plot along, but I didn't really feel anything for them. They were just kind of there. The writing was very good. It was humorous, touching, and romantic. Everything in the story was believable. I didn't feel as if any of the characters were fake, and the dialog was real. There were a few twists that I didn't see coming. And while I knew how the story would end I didn't expect it to take the path it took to get there. Overall this was a great book. I liked the characters, the plot, and the writing. It's very readable, and I think I could read this again.
  • (5/5)
    From my blog...Alexandra, Gone is a brilliantly stunning novel that showcases the masterful storytelling of author Anna McPartlin where readers learn just enough about the key cast to have their interest piqued. The novel begins with Alexandra's narrative on 21 June 2007 in Dublin where she left a note for her husband Tom to head to the grocery when he returned home from work and said she would be out for a brief time while having drinks with her friend Sherri. Alexandra departed the train in Dalkey, and then she completely vanished. Back in 1989, then 8 year-old Elle Moore began a tradition of spending New Year's Eve writing a letter to the Universe. By May of 1990 we learn that Jane Moore, Elle's 17-year old sister is pregnant and she has turned to her friend Alexandra for help. Jane gave birth to a baby boy, Kurt, and 4 months later Alexandra was gone from the Moore girls lives. In 1996 Imelda writes a letter to her husband Jim, imploring him to look after Leslie when she is gone, for Leslie will be left with no family once she succumbs to cancer. Which brings the reader up to present day with Tom Kavanagh pleading on a radio station for any information or leads that may help find his wife. Jim decides to hand out leaflets at a concert and finds himself trapped in a lift with Elle and Jane Moore and Leslie Sheehan. Elle and Jane are shocked to see a picture of their friend all these years later and stunned to her of her disappearance. The four make a pact to find out the truth of Alexandra's disappearance. McPartlin tells the story through the different voices of Elle, Jane, Leslie, and Tom, each with their unique viewpoints. The characters in Alexandra, Gone are vibrant, flawed, dysfunctional and deal with very serious issues, yet the book does not come across as either too heavy or depressing, rather the story is quite cleverly interwoven. Ingeniously, McPartlin tells the story of not merely a missing woman, but of families, friends, and friends who become family. I recommend Alexandra, Gone with the highest of praise I am able to give.
  • (5/5)
    Alexandra,Gone written by Anna McPartlin takes place in a Dublin suburb and is about how two families cope with the disappearance of Alexandra who one day just disappears. Of course her husband Tom is the automatic suspect but as the story progress's you realize that this is not the case. This contemporary story jumps from character to character which makes the story flow together. The story is sad and at the same time humorous. The main character Jane (who was a childhood friend of Alexandra's) trys to be the rock in her family, raising her son without the father and running a gallery and managing her sister Elle's career. She also has to deal with their always drunk and cantankerous mother Rose who lives in a basement apartment in her home. When an elevator breaks down she finds herself with Alexandra's husband Tom and ends up helping, along with Leslie (a fellow passenger in the elevator who has demons of her own) in the campaign to find what happened to Alexandra.Tom has done whatever was needed to try to help find his wife to no avail. His in-laws have had a tough time with their daughters disappearance but go on with their daily lives the best they can.This is a story of love and loss,new friendships and old, and how family dynamics can affect each member of that family. Underneath this often downright funny novel is the dark shadow of what really happened to Alexandra, (this would be a spoiler so I won't say).This was a fast read and I enjoyed it very much.
  • (4/5)
    Opening with a cheery note written by Alexandra to her husband followed by her happily leaving her home to meet up with a friend, she heads off on the train, this being the last anyone will see of Alexandra before she vanishes. Husband Tom is devastated by her unsolved disappearance and he devotes his life to passing out fliers and trying to find any slim trail that might explain what has happened to his wife. Meanwhile, Jane, who has spent the last 17 years raising her son, still more than a little in love with his father, is sort of treading water when she, her successful artist sister Elle, and web designer Leslie are trapped in an stalled elevator with Tom at a concert. When Jane recognizes the Alexandra on Tom's fliers as an older version of her best friend from high school, a tentative alliance is formed in order to bring more attention to Alexandra's case.All of the characters' lives revolve around the empty space Alexandra left behind but as time goes on, even as they continue to search and hope, they all learn to live their lives around the loss. Tom's sadness is palpable throughout the novel. He and Alexandra's mother lean on each other, believing in the impossible while Alexandra's brother and father seem to hold Tom responsible in some way. Jane jumps into the search for Alexandra thinking of her old friend and the way that they drifted apart when Jane got pregnant and Alexandra went on to college. Since Jane's life took a left turn, she has not only raised her son as a single mom, but she's been there for her ex as he waltzed through women, and has taken care of her flighty but incredibly gifted sister and their cantankerous mother. With her son finishing up high school, Jane's life is at a crossroads. Elle is childlike despite her powerful artistic gift and Jane's careful caretaking has allowed her to indulge in self-destructive behaviours driven by her manic depressive swings. Leslie, the one perfect stranger in the elevator, is reclusive, such a loner her neighbor, smelling something bad from her apartment calls the police, certain that Leslie has died in there. When she agrees to help design a website in hopes of finding new clues into Alexandra's disappearance, she starts to come out of her shell, making friends and choosing life instead of just waiting to die of the breast cancer that decimated her entire family. All of the characters face new beginnings in the wake of Alexandra's vanishing and while it initially seems impossible for each of them to wake up to the importance and potentials of their lives, they do indeed come to see the beauty in love, friendship, and new starts.While the tone of the book could be overwhelmingly sad, and at times it is, McPartlin has managed to avoid making the novel one of nothing but loss, even though each of the characters' stories are indeed pervaded by loss. Alexandra's disappearance is the mystery around which all of the other characters' lives revolve, the reason they all meet in fact, but this is really more the story of how people carry on and how they face the next day and the next and the next and ultimately how they must go on to find some happiness in the world no matter how great the sadness weighing them down. The characters, are, in the end, to greater and lesser degree, hopeful. They've created connections amongst themselves and the reader certainly feels a connection to them as well. They are complex and interesting and well thought out characters.The structure of the novel can be a bit choppy, as is often the case with ensemble casts of characters, with all of them being the focus of sections in turn. But it is important to see all of the characters fully so the structure needs to be this way. Alexandra, is of course, most present in her absence. And because of this absence, the reader will want a resolution to her story. But resolution is not the theme here and so the idea of renewal and continuation takes center stage. And while the reader does eventually discover a little of the mystery, the end of the book continues on, as befitting the theme. The cover here will appeal to readers of chick lit but there's a wealth of very serious topics covered within these pages. These topics add quite a bit to the story, taking this from the superficial to some surprising depths. The writing is not maudlin and the characters peopling the pages shine out of the pages. This is a devastating, hopeful, very good read.