how is this book??should i but it?
how is this book??should i but it?
buy it and enjoy. Written on the Body is a love story about how love conquers death. beautifully written in melodic prose.
one of the best i have read. Winterson is amazing. she has a lot of good pieces to read. one of the best is about an aide of Napoleon who falls in love with a woman with webbed feet that can walk on water. i forget the title but nonetheless it's stunning.
I would check it out or buy it used
Yes; Yes; Yes! I hope you have read it & enjoyed it as I did!
One of my all-time favorites. This is a love story, achingly romantic ... written in a way that causes you to go back and re-read the same sentence three, four times.
I wanted very badly to love this book, as you always do when someone you’re close to recommends a book as overpowering, beautiful, life-changing. But when I started to read it I couldn’t get it to work for me at all. Part of the problem was that I didn’t have the time to immerse myself in it completely. I was working madly on a chapter of my own new book manuscript, and completely preoccupied with that. So I was not allowing myself to enter fully into the book’s world. I wasn’t really letting go, letting its life take over my own.
Part of the problem was the book’s static nature. It lingers over the narrator’s dilemmas, studies them, sounds their depths philosophically, emotionally, sensually. It doesn’t drag you forward by the nose to find out what happens.
Another part of the problem was with the book’s idiosyncratic narrative style. Its narrator not only has no name, but also no identifiable gender. You keep going back and forth from assuming “she’s a woman” to assuming “he’s a man.” It doesn’t help that the narrator has had tempestuous affairs in the past with both genders. I kept trying to find clues to the narrator’s “real” gender—hoping I could solve this puzzle so that the book would start to connect, to make sense to me. It was a real object lesson to learn, through this experience, how much gender identity is a crutch for us, an absolutely central category that we use to read even the most trivial or insignificant features of life. I found out, through this book, that I can’t think about people at all, or human relationships at all, except through the lens of gender and sexual choice. It was a very disturbing insght.
Finally I decided that I would never really connect with this book until I arbitrarily assigned the narrator a name and a gender. I decided that she was a woman, named Laura. This worked especially well in the love sequences, where Laura was so lyrical in her praises of her lover Louise’s skin, the way her vagina smelled and tasted. It didn’t work so well in the place where she rhapsodized over her longing to penetrate Louise, to be absorbed into her, become one with her. Nor did it seem to work in the place where she punched her beloved’s creepy husband Elgin under the chin with two fists folded as if in prayer, knocking out a gold tooth. (A very, very poor technique, by the way, that would probably break bones in your hand.)
Still, even relaxing into a familiar set of gender assumptions didn’t completely break the spell of gender ambiguity. After all, why couldn’t penetration be as much an obsession for female lovers as heterosexual ones? Why couldn’t an enraged and betrayed woman knock out a tooth with one very unconventional punch? Actually the only place in the book where I felt almost sure that I’d given the narrator the right gender was the place just before the end where she reflects upon how, even in the dark, one looks for a bush to hide behind to urinate. Hey! Guys don’t do that! Off a cliff would be a more likely guy scenario.
But “solving” (even if unfairly) the book’s gender conundrum did allow me to relax at last and immerse myself in its dark beauty. Winterson has an astonishing verbal fluency, a real knack for finding images and descriptive details that evoke moments of clarity, sensual beauty, morbid despair. The chapters on moments of shared ecstasy are worth the price of admission alone (only $13 in my paperback edition), and the passages on the perniciousness of sexual choices, dysfunction, and loss are wonderfully honest and insightful. The final chapters, on loss and bereavement might be the best of all.
Love this book. Cherish it. Be a better, truer, and more worthy reader than I was. It will reward you with its deft originality, and finally with its sheer beauty and truth.
I feel as though I am alone in my distaste for this book, just as I did with *Atonement*. However, in opposition to my feelings for *Atonement*, I know that I will never read *Written on the Body* again. It has taken me three attempts to simply get through the attempt at being artistic and poetic just to finish the novel.
I've been reading everyone's responses to the book on this page, and so far, it seems that the book is confusing? Though it seems....interesting, then not, then interesting again. Should I read it?