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My Dark Vanessa

af Kate Elizabeth Russell

Andre forfattere: Se andre forfattere sektionen.

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
2,6631415,593 (4.07)59
Fiction. Literature. HTML:

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"[An] exceedingly complex, inventive, resourceful examination of harm and power." The New York Times Book Review, Editors' Choice

"A lightning rod . . . brilliantly crafted."The Washington Post

A most anticipated book by The New York Times USA Today Entertainment Weekly Marie Claire Elle Harper's Bazaar Bustle Newsweek New York Post Esquire Real Simple The Sunday Times The Guardian

Exploring the psychological dynamics of the relationship between a precocious yet nave teenage girl and her magnetic and manipulative teacher, a brilliant, all-consuming read that marks the explosive debut of an extraordinary new writer.

2000. Bright, ambitious, and yearning for adulthood, fifteen-year-old Vanessa Wye becomes entangled in an affair with Jacob Strane, her magnetic and guileful forty-two-year-old English teacher.

2017. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past. But how can Vanessa reject her first love, the man who fundamentally transformed her and has been a persistent presence in her life? Is it possible that the man she loved as a teenagerand who professed to worship only hermay be far different from what she has always believed?

Alternating between Vanessa's present and her past, My Dark Vanessa juxtaposes memory and trauma with the breathless excitement of a teenage girl discovering the power her own body can wield. Thought-provoking and impossible to put down, this is a masterful portrayal of troubled adolescence and its repercussions that raises vital questions about agency, consent, complicity, and victimhood. Written with the haunting intimacy of The Girls and the creeping intensity of Room, My Dark Vanessa is an era-defining novel that brilliantly captures and reflects the shifting cultural mores transforming our relationships and society itself.

.
… (mere)
  1. 10
    Lolita af Vladimir Nabokov (sylvarum)
    sylvarum: It's mentioned in the book, and deals with similar subject matter from the opposite perspective of the relationship.
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» Se også 59 omtaler

Engelsk (140)  Fransk (1)  Alle sprog (141)
Viser 1-5 af 141 (næste | vis alle)
4.5 rounded up. This story is tough to read, but it was really well done.

Based on reading reviews ahead of time I thought this story was going to drag at the end, but I was caught up whole way through. A lot of people grew tired at the stuff that happened in college and after, but in my opinion it complicated the narrative in a really interesting way--her denial, her self-destruction, her PTSD, how she feels doomed decades later even as she romanticizes the past. I loved that Vanessa was a deeply flawed character. I'm also glad the narrative jumped around in the timeline--seeing the way present-day Vanessa was still affected by her past made the flashback scenes just that much more horrifying.

This story resisted easy platitudes and the "perfect victim" mold, and was all the better for it. I'll probably never reread it, but I will be thinking about it for a long time. ( )
  Rachaeljg | Jun 24, 2024 |
i put off reading this book for so long cause i knew it was going to be a tough read for me...i also knew it was a potential 5 stars (or a disappointing DNF).

listening to the superb and lyrical narration made me feel giddy, confused, creeped out, devastated, and heartbroken. i think that more than a story, this was a discussion between/among everyone involved--Vanessa, her parents, her teacher/s, friends, the bystanders, and the reader--and spanned several years. it was also very delicately handled without avoiding the tough questions or sacrificing thoroughness. and for that, i hold this book above Lolita (which I think I have to re-read now).

i listened to the author/narrator interview afterwards. i agree with what they said. love is complicated. abuse/manipulation is also complicated. to that i'd add something i heard of from a long time ago: a lesser evil is still evil. ( )
  riida | Apr 26, 2024 |
This is a contemporary retelling of Lolita, from the pov of the schoolgirl. Told in the first person, Vanessa tries to come to terms with the ongoing relationship that she had with her literature teacher, which started when she was 15 years old, and he was 42. Although Vanessa refuses to see herself as a victim, Jacob Strane was clearly a predator. From the moment she introduces herself as "Vanessa from nowhere", he knows she is the one..and outsider... and grooms her relentlessly. He convinces her, using literature and emotional manipulation, that their tragic romance was predestined and inevitable. He tells her he is special, so willing, not like any other woman he's ever known. Years later, as an adult, she laments "it's strange to know that whenever I remember myself at fifteen I'll think of this". She struggles to "see more of the world without him behind my eyes" and asks herself "who is to blame?"
It is a difficult read, but a brilliant look into the mind of a person truly brainwashed into believing that the blame for the transgression of ephebophilia was the fault of an alluring teen, just trying to go to school, not understanding that his experience allowed him to use his words and her emotions to get her permission to abuse her. I had to put it down and ruminate on the disturbing realization that this does happen all to often. ( )
1 stem Chrissylou62 | Apr 11, 2024 |
A heart-breaking, haunting, exceptional novel. As one of the most poignant and memorable books of the 21st century, this gnawing response to Nabokov's Lolita gives readers another perspective of the ugly reality of child sexual abuse. Vanessa does not believer herself to be a victim, a survivor, or a hero. She can only cling to what her life is as defined by her high school English teacher. This book is hard to read. It's hard, it's sad, it's revolting at times. But it is real. The un-reality that Vanessa is so desperate to keep is our reality, it is, no matter how badly you want her to understand, her reality.
To say that her epiphany at the end of the book feels like taking a hit straight to the heart is an understatement. The work that Russell has put in to get us to this ultimate moment of catharsis is indescribably overwhelming.


Do NOT read this book if you will be triggered by the subject matter. It is explicit and painful, and it is never-ending. It is unrelenting, and if you think you will be triggered by this book then do not read it. If you think this will help you in any way, and I am sympathetic to the belief that this content is helpful for people with trauma, I urge you to be fully aware of your body and mind, ask yourself if you feel ready, and put the book down if you do not wish to continue. To anyone reading this, I wish you well post-reading, or pre-reading if you're reading through reviews to decide if this is for you. ( )
  gojosatoru98 | Mar 1, 2024 |
[Trigger warning]
With more and more survivors coming forward with experiences like Vanessa's, this story is an unsettling but important read for those who can stomach the subject matter. The author's unveiled a layer of complexity that allowed this story to make a long lasting impact on the way I think about abusive relationships, sexual consent and protecting children and/or survivors.

What was good:
- The slow and steady progression of Vanessa's relationship with her abuser, Strane, communicated how insidious his grooming efforts were. This man was nothing if not patient. His character struck a perfect balance of condescending (without being blatantly cruel) but affectionate and validating enough to keep kid Vanessa (who is friendless, what a coincidence) coming back for more. This was so profound that adult Vanessa's self-image continues to revolve around how this man saw her at 15. The way these exchanges were portrayed showed how easy it is for anyone, teenage or otherwise, to fall into the clutches of one of these people.
- Stane's impact on adult Vanessa's psyche and behaviour. Throughout the story, she excuses his actions by reassuring herself (and others) that what had happened was not was as it seemed and that she had been a willing party. And that she was just one of those teenagers just matured faster. Or that he was the only person to see how extraordinary she was. As nauseating as these thoughts were to read, it made it so much clearer how ruinous and significant Strane's abuse continues to have on adult Vanessa. She would rather sooner continue a lifelong devotion to the man who ruined her life and romanticize their relationship because she couldn't bear to come to terms with the effect he had had on her entire life. When that rationalization became clear, I was devastated. Because of course - accepting a less excruciating truth may be something everyone does to one degree or another. ( )
  ratatatatatat | Feb 21, 2024 |
Viser 1-5 af 141 (næste | vis alle)
En helstøpt, sitrende og akkurat passende ubehagelig Metoo-roman, som lugger deg i din moralske hjerterot.

«Min mørke Vanessa»: En historie om forbudt kjærlighet?

Nei. Eller jo. Men nei.

Mens jeg som leser røres inn i en grumsete grøt av lengsel, erotikk, løgner og manipulasjon, blir jeg likevel i tvil til tider. For hvor går egentlig grensen mellom overgrep og destruktiv kjærlighet? Hva er definisjonen på maktmisbruk, og når og hvordan gjelds prinsippet om samtykke? Ikke minst: Hvem er dommerne som definerer?
tilføjet af annek49 | RedigerNRK, Shana Fevang Mathai (Apr 30, 2020)
 

» Tilføj andre forfattere (6 mulige)

Forfatter navnRolleHvilken slags forfatterVærk?Status
Kate Elizabeth Russellprimær forfatteralle udgaverberegnet
Gummer, GraceFortællermedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
Restrepo, XimenaFortællermedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
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Fiction. Literature. HTML:

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"[An] exceedingly complex, inventive, resourceful examination of harm and power." The New York Times Book Review, Editors' Choice

"A lightning rod . . . brilliantly crafted."The Washington Post

A most anticipated book by The New York Times USA Today Entertainment Weekly Marie Claire Elle Harper's Bazaar Bustle Newsweek New York Post Esquire Real Simple The Sunday Times The Guardian

Exploring the psychological dynamics of the relationship between a precocious yet nave teenage girl and her magnetic and manipulative teacher, a brilliant, all-consuming read that marks the explosive debut of an extraordinary new writer.

2000. Bright, ambitious, and yearning for adulthood, fifteen-year-old Vanessa Wye becomes entangled in an affair with Jacob Strane, her magnetic and guileful forty-two-year-old English teacher.

2017. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past. But how can Vanessa reject her first love, the man who fundamentally transformed her and has been a persistent presence in her life? Is it possible that the man she loved as a teenagerand who professed to worship only hermay be far different from what she has always believed?

Alternating between Vanessa's present and her past, My Dark Vanessa juxtaposes memory and trauma with the breathless excitement of a teenage girl discovering the power her own body can wield. Thought-provoking and impossible to put down, this is a masterful portrayal of troubled adolescence and its repercussions that raises vital questions about agency, consent, complicity, and victimhood. Written with the haunting intimacy of The Girls and the creeping intensity of Room, My Dark Vanessa is an era-defining novel that brilliantly captures and reflects the shifting cultural mores transforming our relationships and society itself.

.

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