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Galilee (1998)

af Clive Barker

Serier: Galilée (tome 1)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
1,232911,596 (3.58)39
Rich and powerful, the Geary dynasty has reigned over American society for decades. But it is a family with dark, terrible secrets. For the Gearys are a family at war. Their adversaries are the Barbarossas, a clan whose timeless origins lie in myth, whose mystical influence is felt in intense, sensual exchanges of flesh and soul. Now their battle is about to escalate. When Galilee, prodigal prince of the Barbarossa clan, meets Rachel, the young bride of the Gearys' own scion Mitchell, they fall in love, consumed by a passion that unleashes long-simmering hatred. Old insanities arise, old adulteries are uncovered, and a seemingly invincible family will begin to wither, exposing its unholy roots. . . .… (mere)

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Viser 1-5 af 9 (næste | vis alle)
I read this first when it came out, so this is a reread. My initial impression was of gods walking among us with a serious attempt to make old legends real. I recognized Dumuzi/Tammuz right off the bat and was enchanted. I had been doing a Barker marathon at the time, so I was really into the meandering and directionless text. He always got somewhere in the end, so I my faith was strong.

This second read showed me how much more mythology I now know and reaffirmed my belief that Barker was a bit more accomplished in the realm of practicing magick. I always guessed as much back in the day, but now I can point to a hell of a lot of interesting factoids. I won't do that here. I'm sure it would bore most anyone to death. Suffice to say, I *still* think this book is one hell of a meandering ride.

Do you like to read about two great families, with a lot of interesting history between them? Check. Do you love magical realism? Check.

Do you love novels that sincerely try to give you a bit of everything, trying to bring the novel truly alive with all the foibles of gods and humans? I don't say this lightly. I'm really saying that it tries to bring together love and hate, ennui and passion, romance and intellect, immortality and guttering flames, and even potence and impotence. The pieces are everywhere, and Barker consistently brings them all self-consciously to the fore through his narrator, rising from self-satisfied indolence to an interest and a restored passion for exploring life.

Even the narrator has a hard time pulling all the pieces together, and honestly, I think Barker was speaking to us all, directly. It was a truly huge novel in all it tried to accomplish. It had such a huge cast even while ostensibly remaining a revenge tale couched within an epic romance.

I knew what to expect, so I didn't expect a polished flow or even a real thread of a plot until late. It's just not what this novel was designed for.

It IS designed to throw you into such a deep and exploratory life among living gods, half-gods, and the Kennedy clan... oh wait.. I didn't mean that... that you as a reader aren't *meant* to do much else besides ride the boat of the novel and enjoy the lives and the scenery.

And that's fine. There's a lot to enjoy.

It's really hard to put my finger on exactly what I like most about it. I know I like it. I think it's mostly the whole cloth, the tapestry and the weave, that I most appreciate. The hundreds of smaller aspects only serve to bolster the feel of the whole, while never striking me over the head with it's importance, save for a few endgame plot-worthy scenes, of course.

I really do love a happy ending, though, and I had been noticing that Barker's concurrent works were all inching toward the same conclusions. A true departure from the horror I knew and love, in other words.

I do recall that I pointed myself back to this and another of Barker's works as an obvious precursor to [b:American Gods|4407|American Gods (American Gods, #1)|Neil Gaiman|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1258417001s/4407.jpg|1970226]. If it wasn't for things like this novel, I wouldn't have been so well primed to enjoy Gaiman's novel. (And it was only later than that when I finally picked up [b:The Sandman, Vol. 1: Preludes and Nocturnes|23754|The Sandman, Vol. 1 Preludes and Nocturnes (The Sandman, #1)|Neil Gaiman|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1411609637s/23754.jpg|1228437], so the whole cause/effect thing is hairy, anyway. I'm just spouting my impressions. Good impressions, I might add.)

Meandering can sometimes be a boon, and in my final estimate, this one pulled it off. ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
This was an absolutely electrifying novel by Clive Barker-- as well as being my first. The characters are vivid and lucid in their tidings and the stark, wonderful prose weaves cloaks around its setting, theme, and plot. I was very impressed with this work and fully believe that Barker is an author worth exploring further.

4 stars-- well worth it! ( )
  DanielSTJ | May 5, 2019 |
I owned this book for years before I decided to read it. Maybe because I read Sacrament before hand. If you are a fan of Mr. Barker you automatically know things are not going to be as they seem. This book was amazing. Lot of beautiful contrast, broken hearts and thought put into the story. Expect no less from Barker but one of the few books in which he allows the reader to come back to a safe place. ( )
  Joe73 | Apr 21, 2017 |
Galilee by Clive Barker was on the 75 Halloween thread, and, it takes the narrator 397 pages to say:

"Ah well; this was never fated to be a book distinguished by its tidiness. I'm sure it's going to get a damn sight less orderly before we get to the final pages."

Really? At nearly 600 pages, this "romance" from the writer of some well received horror fiction could have used an editor with a machete. There's a very basic storyline here that is amended, extended, qualified, and carried on so long that what should have been a fast neat Hatfield-McCoy family feud is so bloated that it seems interminable. For the interim, I'm back to a much shorter and cleaner Stephen King. ( )
  Prop2gether | Nov 10, 2010 |
With [Galilee], Clive Barker only really dips his toe in the water. But given the typical grand scale of his stories, the result is still a rich and interesting read.

The intertwined fate of two powerful and strange families, the Barbarossas and the Gearys, . From divine or supernatural stock, the Barbarossas telekinetically project their spirits around the world and live for centuries without aging. Even with their superhuman nature, their lives gravitate to the pleasure of the human senses. The Gearys, on the other hand, are more squarely focused on wealth and the power it buys. In the middle, sailing the seas of the world in self-imposed exile is the central character and namesake of the novel, Galilee. Though a Barbarossa, Galilee has somehow crossed over into the Geary world and seems to have an unusual connection with the Geary women. The mystery of just how the families’ destinies intersected fuels the book, carrying the narrative from mythic times and places to the Civil War South to the modern-day high-rises of New York City.

Barker never settles for simple. His stories always immerse the reader in strange, mystical worlds and magical, eccentric characters. [Galilee] follows that pattern but doesn’t completely deliver. The story is epic and the characters complex but Barker’s choice of narrator cripples the experience. Barker uses Maddox, one of the Barbarossa children, as the narrator. Granted a mysterious omniscient view of the family’s history, Maddox begins to write a family history. But Maddox’ view of the individual lives and exploits of the family read cold and incomplete. The story, if told in a more personal way through the major players, would have rendered a deeper connection to the reader, and certainly would have lessened the frustration and feeling of incompleteness in the ending. Some of the most interesting aspects of the tale are held in reserve to falsely build anticipation. The payoff is anti-climatic in the telling because of the faux mystery.

[Galilee] would have been a better set of books, with Barker taking the time to explore the entire cast of characters. What saves the book is Barker’s mastery of the fantastic and mystical.

3 ½ bones!!! ( )
  blackdogbooks | Oct 16, 2010 |
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Rich and powerful, the Geary dynasty has reigned over American society for decades. But it is a family with dark, terrible secrets. For the Gearys are a family at war. Their adversaries are the Barbarossas, a clan whose timeless origins lie in myth, whose mystical influence is felt in intense, sensual exchanges of flesh and soul. Now their battle is about to escalate. When Galilee, prodigal prince of the Barbarossa clan, meets Rachel, the young bride of the Gearys' own scion Mitchell, they fall in love, consumed by a passion that unleashes long-simmering hatred. Old insanities arise, old adulteries are uncovered, and a seemingly invincible family will begin to wither, exposing its unholy roots. . . .

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