Winter

Winter

Book - 2018
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"The dazzling second novel in Ali Smith's essential Seasonal Quartet--from the Baileys Prize-winning, Man Booker-shortlisted author of Autumn and How to be both. Bleak. Frosty wind, earth as iron, water as stone, so the old song goes. The shortest days, the longest nights. The trees are bare and shivering. The summer's leaves? Dead litter. The world shrinks; the sap sinks. But winter makes things visible. And if there's ice, there'll be fire. In Ali Smith's Winter, lifeforce matches up to the toughest of the seasons. In this second novel in her acclaimed Seasonal cycle, the follow-up to her sensational Autumn, Smith's shape-shifting quartet of novels casts a merry eye over a bleak post-truth era with a story rooted in history, memory and warmth, its taproot deep in the evergreens: art, love, laughter. It's the season that teaches us survival. Here comes Winter."--
Publisher: Toronto :, Hamish Hamilton,, 2018
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9780670070046
Branch Call Number: FIC SMI
Characteristics: 322 pages ; 22 cm

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beetlebaily
Jun 11, 2019

I read about 50 pages and quit. I am sure it is a very good literary novel, but just not my type. My rating of one star does not reflect the quality of the book, rather my subjective opinion of the book based on my dislike of the genre.

t
TheresaAJ
Feb 12, 2019

Smith has moved on to Winter after her novel Autumn. Although not strictly linear, this story has a more straight forward plot line than Autumn. The story takes place over three days, Christmas Eve, Christmas, and Boxing Day. Sophia Cleves is rattling around her 15-room house in Cornwall waiting for her son Arthur and his girlfriend Charlotte to arrive for the holidays. Arthur is in a fluster because Charlotte has dumped him and hijacked his blog, Art In Nature. He then shows up in Cornwall with Lux who's agreed to play Charlotte for the holiday. Finding his mother in crisis, Lux gets Arthur to call his Aunt Iris for help. Most of the story is told in flashbacks which covers both Sophie's and Iris' histories -- one as a successful business woman and the other as an activist. Smith again plays with language, Shakespeare, and her love of Dickens. The book is vaguely reminiscent of A Christmas Carol with Smith's unique spin on the classic.

m
Mooseum
Sep 22, 2018

For me, it takes a bit of rumination after finishing an Ali Smith book for the details to sink in.

Ali Smith is a thoroughly contemporary writer. Her viewpoint is unique and the way that she structures a story might seem conventional, yet there is something about how the characters are developed through a sort of time travel that in the end becomes very satisfying.

This is a book about our times, our restlessness, our not paying attention while we think we are paying attention, helplessness, hopelessness, infuriating sisters, a mother who keeps secrets from her son... and in the end, us, how we have become complicit in our time and therefore, maybe our future.

g
GummiGirl
Jun 01, 2018

I enjoyed the interesting characters, references to recent events as well as classic literature, and learning about an artist I hadn't heard of (Barbara Hepworth). In other words, it's a lot like "Autumn" although the stories are unconnected.

k
krsbozo
Feb 13, 2018

This is the third Ali Smith book that I have read. I'm drawn to her language and style and stories. I enjoyed this novel, and read it quickly.

u
uncommonreader
Feb 05, 2018

Dickens' "A Christmas Carol", Shakespeare's "Cymbeline", Barbara Hepworth, estranged sisters, Greenham Common ... relationships, the present day, the past, the future. An engaging and interesting book indeed.

c
carolefort
Jan 09, 2018

Winter is the second of Ali Smith's seasonal quartet. I have not yet read Autumn and therefore will not be comparing the two novels. What stood out was the cadence of the prose in Winter. It reads like a long poem, without chapters to frame the story. The four characters in the book spend the Christmas holidays together under the same roof. The diverse group is made up of Arthur, his mother, his mother's sister and a woman Arthur has hired to pretend to be his girlfriend. For the most part, it appears that they are not enjoying each other's company and friction often accompanies their conversations about politics, relationships, art. I am intrigued with what the next season will bring.

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