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A Five Year Sentence
 
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A Five Year Sentence [Format Kindle]

Bernice Rubens
3.5 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)

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Présentation de l'éditeur

‘Miss Hawkins looked at her watch. It was two-thirty. If everything went according to schedule, she could safely reckon to be dead by six o’clock.’

But by the day’s end, events have taken a dramatic turn and Miss Hawkins is sentenced to live. Forcibly retired, she is presented by her colleagues with a five-year diary.

Programmed since childhood to total obedience, Miss Hawkins slavishly follows her dairy’s commands until the impossible happens – she meets a man. As a last reprieve from the horrors of loneliness she embarks on a determined full-scale mission to taste life’s secret pleasures – and pains– until the cup runs dry…

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 361 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 192 pages
  • Editeur : Bloomsbury Reader; Édition : 1 (4 mars 2013)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B00B0CXFSQ
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 3.5 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°75.518 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 excellent stuff 1 octobre 2013
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
A novel I read years ago but have put on to my Kindle because I intend reading it again. One of the best books I ever read. The heroin, Miss Hawkins is due to retire. She has lived for her work, slavishly obeying established conventions all her life and sees no future beyond and so she is determined to commit suicide after her leaving do.
Her plans are destroyed when her colleagues present her with a Five Year Diary. She feels obliged to stay alive five more years and write in it every day. Her life is such that she has precious little to report and eventually she decides to write in the diary in advance and make things happen. Gradually, the diary takes over.
Absurd, funny, wonderfully written.
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0 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Une dépression qui s'installe... 5 avril 2013
Par alinette
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
J'ai trouvé cette histoire franchement déprimante.
Une dame d'un certain âge, Ms Hawkins, qui part en retraite. Comme elle ne sert, du coup, plus à rien, elle prévoit de se suicider en rentrant, après son dernier jour de boulot. Ce jour là ses collègues lui offrent un journal qui court sur les cinq prochaines années (d'où le titre du livre "une peine de cinq ans"). Un peu déboussolée, elle ne peut faire autrement que de vivre ces cinq prochaines années. Ayant l'habitude de toujours obéir à quelqu'un, elle écrit à l'avance dans son journal ce qu'elle a fait de sa journée... elle est alors obligée de remplir son devoir, elle a un "but" dans sa journée.
Je n'ai pas aimé ce livre. L'écriture est plaisante, recherchée et délicate... mais les personnages sont terribles, tristes, lâches ou méchants, mais sans jamais aucun panache. La pauvre Ms Hawkins est une vraie paumée, sa vie est triste à pleurer : après ses premières années à l'orphelinat, elle va travailler à l'usine, où elle grimpe les échelons sans gloire pour finir (je crois) comptable... Le tout sans un ami, sans un rire, sans joie... Arrivée à la retraite c'est en suivant les "ordres" du livre qu'elle s'amuse le plus, on dirait. Sauf qu'on comprend très vite que ça ne va pas vraiment aller mieux, et tout le livre est une dégringolade vers la dépression totale...
Je ne veux pas révéler la fin de l'histoire (bien qu'il n'y ait pas franchement de suspense) donc je m'arrête là. Je ne recommande pas ce livre, à part si vous voulez travailler votre anglais, et vous plonger dans une Angleterre surannée, le seul charme du livre.
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Amazon.com: 3.6 étoiles sur 5  5 commentaires
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great book! 8 juin 2005
Par Lara Stefansdottir - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
I found this book on a shelf in Norway where I was visiting and I had to borrow it on my travel home to Iceland because I had to know what would happen to Mrs. Hawkins. This is one of the best books I have read, Mrs Hawkins is used to obey others her whole life (first in a orphanage, then in a factory) and the book starts on the last day at work when she is about to retire. Since she will not have anyone to obey after that she plans a suicide. But her fellows workers (whom she never talks to outside work) give her a diary for 5 years and now she can not die because it is of course her duty to write to the diary for 5 years. The orders she give herself are so funny - definitely worth reading.
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Unusual book 11 mars 2014
Par kanegirl - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
It did keep my attention, but when I was finished, I could only describe it as weird. Compelling yet really could not recommend to friends.
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Miss Hawkins's Final Journey. 29 janvier 2014
Par Peter Maughan - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle
The circumscribed life of Miss Hawkins, orphaned as a child and now a friendless, lonely spinster (Bernice Rubens was good at loneliness, its echoes in the everyday life of her characters, the things left unsaid, and those that are said not what was meant at all), how little she would leave behind, is there on the first page of this novel, when she tells herself that today she needn't bother listening to the weather forecast (a final note, as it were, before leaving this world, one, with no family or friends, addressed to herself). She tidies her flat, aware that soon, by her last act, she would be inviting strangers in, and leaves for the sweet factory, for the last day of her forty-six years working there, the last day of everything. For she intends before the evening taking her own life.

Those forty-six years have taken her (a passive journey) from the gift-wrapping department, up to boiled sweets, and then to marshmallows and fondants, and finally to the top floor of the firm, to chocolate liqueurs and the reward of head cashier (where no one remembers or knows that her first name is Jean). And now, as with the orphanage before it, it was done with; she was retiring, leaving her not only with time on her hands but with a life. And she intended, for the first time in it, doing what she wanted with it.

And then, to mark her retirement, she is presented in the work's canteen with a five-year diary. The sweet factory hasn't quite finished with Miss Hawkins; neither has life. She is used to been told what to do, and obeying, and now the sweet factory (or life; for Miss Hawkins it comes to the same thing), has given her further orders: five more years of living to do before she can retire from that as well.

And so begins Miss Hawkins's new, five year journey, one that Rubens treats with compassion and some humour. A journey with a rather bleak destination but which holds for Miss Hawkins a sort of revenge and maybe even redemption.
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Dark humour, but I struggled to find humanity: laughed AT 1 décembre 2013
Par Lady Fancifull - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle
Bernice Rubens wrote books which were either about the small, fragile, distinctly oddball members of society, with a mordant, warm and tender humour about their oddities, or, her other strand was the large writing about Jewish heritage and identity. This latter writing produced the magnificent Brothers, a veritable saga which rather wrings the reader out emotionally and is a compulsive page-turner (well it was for me)

I first came across Rubens in the first strand - the oddball, on the edge, sad, lonely loser and their story. This was in I Sent a Letter to My Love (Library of Wales), the story of a lonely spinster, later made into a French film.

Five Year Sentence is in the same territory. This time, a sad and lonely spinster does not write letters - but instead, keeps a diary (a five year one, hence the title) The relationship she forms with this diary is distinctly weird.

The book has an arresting beginning (not a spoiler, it is right there at the start:

"Miss Hawkins looked at her watch. It was two-thirty. If everything went according to schedule, she could safely reckon to be dead by six o' clock. Maybe I'll listen to the news first, she thought to herself. I won't need to bother with the weather forecast"

We immediately know that although the book is probably going to cover some quite dark territory, it glitters with humour, and the central character herself, however weird she is (very) possesses an eccentric sense of the amusing - `I won't need to bother with the weather forecast'

Jean Hawkins, raised in an orphanage, under the brutal rule of a ramrod Matron, starting work in a sweet factory, where she stayed, albeit rising slowly up a lowly ladder of promotion, is to retire. And is preparing to exit her unremarkable life. Clearly she doesn't and we follow the fortunes, or otherwise, of this rather peculiar, narrow life. Rubens treats her with some compassion, we do feel for poor Jean, she has a certain weird vitality - though it has to be said there isn't a single character in the novel that any reader could feel warmth towards - mainly because not one of them HAS any warmth or kindness.

Here is where this book parts company with the book it reminded me of (I Sent A Letter To My Love) as though the central characters belonged in the same `loser' category, there was warmth, tenderness and reaching out.

In this book, although we absolutely can have compassion for these wasted, mean, lives, there is something distasteful about all the characters; we are never offered a glimpse of who they might have been had circumstances treated them a little more kindly.

Unlike `I Sent A Letter' this book left me diminished, rather than expanded. Rubens was a fine writer. This is not an example of her best.
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Five Year Sentence 17 avril 2013
Par dubious joe - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
Bernice Rubens wrote this story very strangely. The character is an old woman who cannot live with herself without being controlled. At the end she never really freed herself. It was a boring, yet suspenseful read.
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