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The Horned Man (2002)

af James Lasdun

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
307885,917 (3.37)17
The Horned Man opens with a man losing his place in a book, then deepens into a dark and terrifying tale of a man losing his place in the world. As Lawrence Miller--an English expatriate and professor of gender studies--tells the story of what appears to be an elaborate conspiracy to frame him for a series of brutal killings, we descend into a world of subtly deceptive appearances where persecutor and victim continually shift roles, where paranoia assumes an air of calm rationality, and where enlightenment itself casts a darkness in which the most nightmarish acts occur. As the novel races to its shocking conclusion, we follow Miller as he traverses the streets of Manhattan and the decaying suburbs beyond, in terrified pursuit of his pursuers. Written with sinuous grace and intellectual acuity, The Horned Man is an extraordinary, unforgettable first novel by an acclaimed writer and poet of unusual power. Reading group guide included.… (mere)
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» Se også 17 omtaler

Viser 1-5 af 8 (næste | vis alle)
I'll be honest, I read this almost purely on the basis of Lasdun's paranoia, reported in his memoir On Being Stalked, that its subject matter would lend credence to his stalker's suggestions that he was sexually inappropriate to her (though they both agree that, actually, he was not). The central character does initially seem to be the quintessential author-insert character -- a mediocre would-be writer, with the author's own nationality, who is improbably lusted over by various female characters despite his apparent lack of interesting or attractive features.

But the plot pretty quickly takes a turn for the bizarre, and then another turn for the even-more-bizarre. Lasdun does a great job of not only of crafting a compelling thriller but also, I think, of skewering the milquetoast author-insert trope, which he leverages well to his advantage. It's a very paranoid read -- also true, of course, of Lasdun's memoir -- but also very intelligent. Would recommend to anyone looking for a short Twilight Zone-y thriller. ( )
  maddietherobot | Oct 21, 2023 |
I did not like this at all. It was reminiscent of something I've already read, but I suspect that I would forgive or enjoy that if this were a story I liked. But though it seems reasonably well written, allusive, and snappy, that didn't stop it from being a deeply unlikable journey, and not at all redemptive. I don't want to be in this head without a point. ( )
  Kiramke | Jun 27, 2023 |
I was thoroughly confused by the end of this book. In fact, I was left with the feeling of not even knowing whether I liked this book or not.

The story begins with an English expatriot professor of gender studies who was asked to be part of a team determining sexual harassment at the college which employs him. He is newly separated from his wife but is determined to have her back. Spending time in his office, he gets the feeling that someone is out to get him, but does not understand why, although he has an idea who it might be.

For a while, I was intrigued by the story, but as it got more involved, I felt sort of left by the wayside. When it evolved into the surreal, I was almost near the end. Oddly, I found that reading the story itself was entertaining, but trying to understand it was not. ( )
1 stem SqueakyChu | Jun 21, 2011 |
Laurence Miller, an Englishman teaching gender studies at a college in New York, becomes obsessed by Bogomil Trumilcik, a Bulgarian immigrant and former lecturer at the college. Miller is convinced that Trumilcik is spying on him, sleeping in his office in the gap between two desks that have been pushed together and trying to frame him for murder.

Not really to my taste, but I carried on with it as it was less than 200 pages long and I was kind of intrigued to find out what happened. I'm just not keen on first person stories told by someone whose view of events is so skewed from reality.

You know almost from the beginning that Laurence is deluded. Anyone in a normal state of mind who really believed that someone was breaking into his office at night would at the very least have separated the desks, removed all items left behind by previous occupants of the room, arranged to have the locks changed and requested that campus security keep a close eye on his office. ( )
  isabelx | Mar 16, 2011 |
Lasdun's style is a bit Nabakov (with fewer verbal games) and a bit Ishiguro (but less obscure). The tale is absorbing. Highly recommended. ( )
  slickdpdx | Nov 9, 2008 |
Viser 1-5 af 8 (næste | vis alle)
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The Horned Man opens with a man losing his place in a book, then deepens into a dark and terrifying tale of a man losing his place in the world. As Lawrence Miller--an English expatriate and professor of gender studies--tells the story of what appears to be an elaborate conspiracy to frame him for a series of brutal killings, we descend into a world of subtly deceptive appearances where persecutor and victim continually shift roles, where paranoia assumes an air of calm rationality, and where enlightenment itself casts a darkness in which the most nightmarish acts occur. As the novel races to its shocking conclusion, we follow Miller as he traverses the streets of Manhattan and the decaying suburbs beyond, in terrified pursuit of his pursuers. Written with sinuous grace and intellectual acuity, The Horned Man is an extraordinary, unforgettable first novel by an acclaimed writer and poet of unusual power. Reading group guide included.

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