Tag Archives: marriage

The Sandcastle – Iris Murdoch


As far as I could find out, this novel has not been published in Italian. And I wonder wich kind of copyright reasons prevented it to be published in the USA too… maybe because the author was a friend of Sartre? It seems that all of her books have not been published in the USA. Very odd…

Anyway, let me say that this writer was a great surprise to me!

It doesn’t happen so much in this novel that takes place at the end of the  Fifties: the main carachter is a middle-aged school master (I think between 40 and 50) falls in love with a young artist and all his life is endangered, his marriage, his two children, his political future… At the end the young painter goes away and Mor, remains with his family and embrace the candidature as a member of the Parliament.

Iris Murdoch was so great in depicting the feelings and the faults of this man! It is not easy to take the part of a member of opposite sex, for a writer. She show us how Mor is just a man, who is not able to face the conformity of his environment, and she describe it very well in few lines here, when the lover is going away and he doesn’t manage to follow her because he is surrounded by his colleagues and friends:

(…) although Mor struggled in his seat he could not bring himself to get up. A lifetime of conformity was too much for him.

A counter-hero, at the end, who is incapable of telling his wife his reasons, a man who postpones explanations and who prefers to talk about silly issues to avoid more important and deep discussions.

He hardly takes a decision to go with his lover, and he immediately feels light-hearted, but this is just a sandcastle, because he is not able to go on accepting the consequences of this decision.

A very immature man, therefore. But we all have a bit of him in ourselves. This is why I suggest to read this book.



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A message for 10th anniversary

This is the present my husband gave me for our 10th marriage anniversary.

The Third Wife… By Lisa Jewell. Would it be a message?




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Winter Journal – Paul Auster


I loved The New York Trilogy. I cannot say the same thing for Hand to Mouth. But maybe I am not the right person for Auster’s autobiographies. Actually, this is – I think – his third authobiography. He writes of himself as “you”, in second person, maybe to add some distance between him and himself.

My interest went up and down. I must admit that I did not like the lists: lists of things he did, of actions, of people… in my opinion you cannot write a page full of list. You can do it in your journal, if you keep it in your drawer… same reasoning for the lack of internal order: he writes subjects as they get his memory: from early years, to the 64th birthday, from writing, to house moving, from panic attaks to marriage, from sexual impulses to dance.

I appreciated the parts in wich he tells about his mother’s Youth and Death, and how she was despised by the “dour matrons of father’s family” because she acted as if she was the most beautiful woman on the earth. But I also liked the way in wich he remembers her, as a woman who was, at the same time, very practical, active and sensitive. And I love the doutful life she had, because the author will never know if she had a lover during her marriage or not.

At the end: no, I did not like this book very much, but if you have the change, please do read it. It is anyway a collection of memories of a man who has lived, loved, written, read, suffered and travelled a lot (Gosh, I do not know how many times he moved from a house to another: I would become mad doing that!). A little sad, maybe, because he reminds us that we will wither too, despite all our current ebullience, but anyway useful.

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