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Brazzaville Beach [Anglais] [Broché]

William Boyd
5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)

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Description de l'ouvrage

1 août 1995

“Utterly engaging….A novel of ideas, of big themes….William Boyd is a champion storyteller.” - New York Times Book Review

William Boyd’s classic Brazzaville Beach has been called as a “bold seamless blend of philosophy and suspense… [that] nevertheless remains accessible to general readers on a level of pure entertainment.” (Boston Globe). Released to coincide with Boyd’s latest novel, Ordinary Thunderstorms, Brazzaville Beach tells the story of a British primate-researcher who relocates to war-torn Africa in the wake of her husband’s tragic descent into mental illness. Intense, exhilarating, and engrossing, Brazzaville Beach is “rich in action and thought,” and William Boyd “a writer who allows the scope of his work to expand to the point of bursting.” (Los Angeles Times Book Review)

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

“Utterly engaging. . . . A novel of ideas, of big themes. . . . William Boyd is a champion storyteller.” (The New York Times Book Review)

Quatrième de couverture

In the heart of a civil war-torn African nation, primate researcher Hope Clearwater made a shocking discovery about apes and man . . .

Young, alone, and far from her family in Britain, Hope Clearwater contemplates the extraordinary events that left her washed up like driftwood on Brazzaville Beach. It is here, on the distant, lonely outskirts of Africa, where she must come to terms with the perplexing and troubling circumstances of her recent past. For Hope is a survivor of the devastating cruelities of apes and humans alike. And to move forward, she must first grasp some hard and elusive truths: about marriage and madness, about the greed and savagery of charlatan science . . . and about what compels seemingly benign creatures to kill for pleasure alone.

Détails sur le produit

  • Broché: 320 pages
  • Editeur : HarperCollins; Édition : Reprint (1 août 1995)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0380780496
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380780495
  • Dimensions du produit: 1,9 x 13,2 x 20 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 23.707 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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I never really warmed to Clovis-he was far too stupid to inspire real affection-but he always claimed a corner of my heart, largely, I supposed, because of the way he instinctively and unconsciously cupped his genitals whenever he was alarmed or nervous. Lire la première page
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Commentaires client les plus utiles
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A most gripping book! 3 décembre 2003
Par Un client
When Hope Clearwater takes you on walks on "Brazzaville Beach" and shares with you the memories of her wrecked marriage in England, and of her research on Chimpanzee social life amidst the African jungle, time stops while you listen. A most thrilling story, brilliantly told by William Boyd. I also recommend "Armadillo" by the same author.
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 Fantastic novel 12 juillet 2014
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
I read this book within a day. The story goes back and force between different periods of her life and is told in a truly capturing way. Hope, the main character, tells about her marriage in the UK and her work life in Brazzaville as a chimpanzee monitor during civil war time. Great read!
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.4 étoiles sur 5  82 commentaires
50 internautes sur 52 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Suspenseful and intelligent - I loved it! 27 septembre 2001
Par Debbie Lee Wesselmann - Publié sur
I adored this book from start to finish. Hope Clearwater is in worn-torn Africa observing chimpanzee behavior when she notices a startling trend that conflicts with everything her boss and mentor believes. Her integrity - and perhaps much more - is threatened when everyone at the camp seems to turn against her. Interwoven with flashbacks to her previous life in England with her bizarre but brilliant mathematician husband and the story of her Egyptian mercenary lover who flies a Mig for one side of the civil war, the story draws powerful parallels between the two primate societies, human and chimp.
How can a novel that discusses the difference between turbulence and topology in mathematics be a page turner? You'll have to read this book to believe it. Other than the name of Hope Clearwater - a bit too much in this otherwise subtle tale - Boyd writes deftly and passionately, sometimes with horrifying precision as he describes what is happening among the chimps.
This suspenseful and intelligent novel deserves a wide readership. I only wish I had learned of it sooner!
35 internautes sur 37 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 enjoyably contrarian 18 juin 2001
Par Orrin C. Judd - Publié sur
Hope Clearwater sits on Brazzaville Beach, contemplates her past, and narrates the events of this novel. One strain of the story concerns her failed marriage to a mathematician whose unquenched thirst for revolutionary discoveries and their attendant fame drove him to madness. The second strain concerns the animal research that Hope had fled to Africa to participate in. Grosso Arvore Research Center is run by the renowned chimpanzee expert Eugene Mallabar, who was just putting the finishing touches on his master work, describing the peaceful ways of our close animal relatives, when Hope's own observations seemed to indicate that all was not quite as idyllic as had previously been supposed among these primates. But the evidence of aggression that she finds between two competing colonies of chimps threatens the carefully constructed image that Mallabar has built up over the years, and, most importantly, threatens to make the animals less attractive to charitable organizations which fund the project. Meanwhile, thrumming in the background is a guerilla war which threatens to swamp this African nation at any moment.
William Boyd takes these various threads and weaves them together, along with a variety of brief comments on scientific and mathematical ideas and issues, into an exciting and intellectually compelling novel. With its Edenic setting and themes of Man's search for knowledge--and the madness the search can bring--the book taps into our primordial myths and some of the core questions of our existence. If it sometimes seems to be almost too consciously striving to be a serious novel of ideas, that ambition is justified, if not always realized, and the philosophical failures are more than offset by the good old-fashioned African adventure story that unfolds simultaneously.
The shelves fairly groan beneath the weight of books warning that when a little of the veneer of civilization gets stripped away in the jungle, Man must face the fact that he has a dark heart. And there are elements of that here, particularly in the way that Mallabar treats Hope and her discovery, but Boyd has much more to say besides just this. Perhaps the most exciting message of the book lies in the contrarian stance it takes to the modern age's tendency to romanticize Nature. It is always well to recall Thomas Hobbes's famous description of Nature as "red in tooth and claw." The reader of this book will not soon forget it.
15 internautes sur 15 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Another Excellent Work From Boyd 12 novembre 2003
Par A. Ross - Publié sur
Once again Boyd brings together unrelated topics, interesting settings, and full characters to create a story that's utterly absorbing and hard to pigeonhole. Narrated by Hope Clearwater (an unfortunately clunky name for a protagonist), the story looks back at two traumatic times in her life, as she attempts to make sense of them. One of these storylines begins with the completion of her dissertation and her subsequent marriage to a brilliant but troubled mathematician. The other storyline concerns her work some years later at a chimpanzee research center in an unnamed African country (presumably Congo). Both of these threads revolve around the quest for knowledge and the mania that quest can result in, and both are compelling. The latter is especially gripping, containing elements of a thriller within its arc, and the backdrop of civil war. Boyd consulted extensively with Jane Goodall in his research for the book, and the result is a vividly realistic portrait of a tiny international scientific community, complete with petty jealousies and massive egos.
It's difficult to write about this book and do it proper justice. So much of it is about Hope's internal struggles about her life, and the difficulties of being married to someone who is greatly flawed. She makes a good feminist character, strong but not pushy, intelligent but not snobby, often conflicted about what the best course of action is, and sometimes mistaken. Her struggle for respect in both the personal and professional realms is at the heart of the book, and is a theme with wide resonance. It's one of the best cases of a man writing in a woman's voice I can recollect. All the characters that surround Hope, even the most insignificant, are carefully crafted and rich in texture. From her Egyptian mercenary lover, to her charismatic project leader and his frigid wife, to her powerful academic advisor, and the volleyball coach turned rebel-each rings true. The novel is not perfect, there are a few minor flaws, such as a contrivance whereby Hope is never able to take photos proving her observations. On the whole though, it's another very solid, and eminently readable work from Boyd.
9 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Touches on questions of human destiny and fate 17 septembre 2003
Par Peggy Vincent - Publié sur
William Boyd's Brazzaville Beach is a dramatic suspenseful novel that quickly pulls readers into the story of scientist Hope Clearwater's experiences in Africa where she's been studying chimps. Alongside her delving into brutal events and grotesque facts that she has witnessed, we also follow the story of Hope's failed marriage. That the characters of the primates in this book are nearly as well-developed as the humans is due to the fact that Boyd received assistance from Jane Goodall, the famed primate researcher.
7 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 a modern masterpiece that you can't put down 1 avril 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur
Boyd really came into his own with this book - a multi-layered exploration of the nature of relationships, mental health and higher maths, mixed with African scenery and painful memories. We follow the life of Hope Clearwater, a biologist/botanist who falls in love with a tortured mathematician - an all too believable character whose limited glimpses into the deeper truth of maths sends him into despair when the glimpses become more fleeting and incomplete. Written as an interconnected series of memories and events, you are effortlessly transported to a different country and a civil war that encompasses the ludicrous nature of some African conflicts. The characterisation and dialogue is effortless and complete, leaving you with the events and personal histories of Hope swirling around your mind for a long time after you put the book down Mixed into the pot is the enormous ego of the head of the chimpanzee research project for which she works,(often mirrored by the behaviour of the researchers themselves) a thought-provoking insight into animal group behaviour, and poignant explorations of the nature of despair and ultimately redemption. Finding a degree of hapiness with Osman, a fighter pilot for hire who creates insect and paper flying machines, and who ultimately disappears, leaves Hope on Brazzaville Beach, pondering the nature of her strange and often beautiful life. I defy anyone to read this book and not be carried along by the wonderful and elegant prose style, the content and the wonderful story. A page turner that conceals a lot of deeper meanings, and my most borrowed (and recommended) book. Buy it.
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