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Slammerkin

af Emma Donoghue

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
2,478895,928 (3.69)204
Dokumentarisk roman fra England om den prostituerede Mary Saunders (1747-1764), der blev henrettet for et mord, begået i 1763.
  1. 90
    Rænkespil af Sarah Waters (rich_as_a_queen)
  2. 70
    Den røde blomst, den hvide blomst af Michel Faber (tina1969)
  3. 50
    The Dress Lodger af Sheri Holman (bnbookgirl)
  4. 20
    Iagttagelserne : roman af Jane Harris (wandering_star)
  5. 10
    Strains From An Aeolian Harp af Emma Rose Millar (EmmaCarley)
  6. 10
    Alias Grace af Margaret Atwood (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Based on sensational true crimes of yesteryear, these character-driven historical novels focus on young women whose attempts to escape lives of poverty and abuse lead to violence. Both disturbing, suspenseful books present nuanced psychological portraits of their protagonists.… (mere)
  7. 10
    Uindviet jord af Hannah Kent (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Although Slammerkin is more suspenseful and richly detailed than the spare, reflective Burial Rites, both character-driven historical novels draw upon true stories of young women accused of murder. Emphasis on the protagonists' impoverished backgrounds allows for exploration of social issues.… (mere)
  8. 00
    City of Light af Lauren Belfer (bnbookgirl)
  9. 00
    The Secret River af Kate Grenville (inbedwithbooks)
    inbedwithbooks: Deze boeken zijn zusters!
Indlæser...

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» Se også 204 omtaler

Engelsk (88)  Hollandsk (1)  Alle sprog (89)
Viser 1-5 af 89 (næste | vis alle)
The more I read by Emma Donoghue, the more I want to read. I consumed this last, sorrowful tale in less than a day- wrapped up so entirely in this fact-based story of the unhappy life of Slammerkin Mary Saunders. Slammerkin: a loose dress, a loose woman- but who makes these? Seamstresses for the former, an evil world for the latter. Poor Mary doesn’t stand a chance, being born a poor woman to a poor woman.
Throughout her short life, she struggles, attempts to make progress, is continually thrust back.
The history woven through the book is fascinating- the bitter cold of the winters recall Helen Humphreys’ “Frozen Thames”- the treatment of former (but really current) slaves, the hypocrisy abounding as all try to survive in horrendous conditions.
Besides being a fascinating, involving story, it brings forward issues we still wrestle with today- prejudice, sexism, repressive religiosity, the loathing of the rich for the poor, and vice versa.
Heartbreaking, but well worth the immersion. Highly recommended.
Ps: some say they couldn’t relate to the main character because she seemed not to grow, or seemed unsympathetic. Ah, well. Many be those of you who think this haven’t experienced hardship. Or heartbreak. With enough hurt, you form a shell- one which Emma Donoghue describes so well. Mary is out into a life in which no choices were given, she is continually cut off from escape, her chances at joys continually snuffed out by the men who raped her, the women who judged her, the people who robbed her. I felt admiration for her ability to cope with her awful life, her inner honour when she stopped away from her one choice at the standard “happy” life, knowing she would be inflicting harm.
One has to wonder how any of us would have coped with such unrelenting hurt? ( )
  Dabble58 | Nov 11, 2023 |
Slammerkin is historical fiction set in 18th-century Britain. Mary is a young girl who gets pregnant from an assault. She is rejected by her family and falls into prostitution. After a series of misadventures, she deceives her mother's old friend into taking her in. Many people enjoyed this book however I was not one of them. The initial chapters were horrifically brutal. The sojourn in the middle is tediously bogged down. The ending devolves to the tone of the beginning. I wasn't in the mood to read something that would make me morbidly depressed so DNF and sent to a little free library. Good riddance. ( )
  varielle | May 11, 2023 |
This book is an engaging story about a young prostitute set in mid 16th century London.

I loved the book initially as it paints the picture of a young woman, Mary, who gets sucked into prostitution who finds a way to survive by her wits and with the help of an older, more experienced prostitute. Mary is not a typical fictional character; she has more than her share of flaws - - not merely in her judgement, but also in her character, yet she is portrayed sympathetically.

Unfortunately, Mary ultimately leaves London and goes into "service" under false pretenses to a family in the countryside.

Here is where one might hope that Mary would rise above her early circumstances and go on to live a happy life. Needless to say, that's not what happens. Not by a long shot.

This book really had a lot of four star qualities in that it was well written and suspenseful, but even I, who really LIKE dark books, found it just didn't have enough hope or uplifting qualities to contrast against the unrelenting darkness. For me, dark books can make even the smallest bit of humanity shine brightly, and I read them for those moving moments. The contrast is what engages my mind and my emotion.

Slammerkin just didn't quite deliver on that promise and while I admired the author for not taking the easy route with her characters, I also ended up feeling that the book really didn't develop that elusive theme that elevates an ordinary read to the four and five star levels. ( )
  Anita_Pomerantz | Mar 23, 2023 |


Sad story, but a real page-turner. Very well done, I'm looking forward to reading more of Donoghue's work. ( )
  steve02476 | Jan 3, 2023 |
This book was recommended years ago (I don't recall where or by whom) for people who like Sarah Waters's 19th century novels (Tipping the Velvet, Fingersmith) of which I am a huge admirer. I bought a copy of Slammerkin at Emma Donoghue's book signing at the Borders in Oak Brook, IL this last fall. It's one of those books I was saving for when I knew I'd need a good, thickish book to dive into.

I didn't realize until I was more than halfway through it that Slammerkin is the fictionalized story of the life of a real girl--Mary Saunders--who at 16 or 17 was hanged for a crime she committed in 1764. As Donoghue explains in her note at the end of the book, not much is known about the real Mary Saunders and I don't want to give away much about the plot, because, as with most historical fiction, part of the enjoyment is in the unfolding of the story.

Slammerkin is historical fiction at its finest. It presents what seems to be a realistic picture of the period. It is a dark book. The copy that I have is the quality paperback edition with the new cover that came out around the time Donoghue's Room was published last year. The blurb near the bottom is from the New York Times Book Review which calls Slammerkin, "A colorful romp of a novel . . . Impossible to resist." Colorful, yes (there are many, many wonderful descriptions of clothing from the period and street scenes, along with brief shots of STD infections, abortions, and other un-sanitized realities of 18th century life). And the novel was impossible for me to resist--I thought about it a lot when I wasn't reading it and read faster as bed time approached. But I wouldn't call it a "romp of a novel." Romp implies play and frolicking, not the hardscrabble life of a penniless 14-year old girl who is thrown into the streets of London by her own mother and turns to a life of prostitution. So if you're into happy, feel-good historical fiction, this won't be your cup of tea.

Donoghue presents a decidedly un-romantic version of both city and rural life in 18th century England. But there are great moments and whole scenes of hope. Mary Saunders and many of the other characters in the novel are the sort that I found myself alternately cheering on or chastising. Mary Saunders's first crime was wanting a better life for herself in a time when people were expected to accept their lot in life. Liberty, servitude, slavery, class, choice, acceptance, denial, seeing, darkness, ambition, tradition, enlightenment, human nature . . . all of these themes and more are seamlessly woven throughout this 384 page book.

This is the second novel that I've read of Donoghue's and I appreciate her lack of preachiness toward her readers and lack of judgment upon her characters. She seems to present nothing more than a story laid bare and leaves it to the reader to draw their own conclusions. This is what makes her characters likable in one scene and annoying or disappointing in the next. They're all very well rounded characters. ( )
  Chris.Wolak | Oct 13, 2022 |
Viser 1-5 af 89 (næste | vis alle)
The novel is structured in such a way that it exerts a considerable grip, the tension slowly, painfully building, yet the writing is also evocative and Donoghue has a particularly good eye for costume and the way cloths confer status, the fine stitching, the liquid warmth of velvet and the stays that sculpt a woman's body as if it were putty, as if it were a sinful thing that needed to be fixed.
tilføjet af Nickelini | Redigerthe Guardian, Natasha Tripney (Feb 17, 2013)
 
But both the writing and the story find their rhythm soon enough, and they're almost impossible to resist.
tilføjet af Nickelini | RedigerNew York Times, Laura Jamison (Jul 8, 2001)
 
Irresistible, and deeply satisfying. Donoghue has surpassed herself.
tilføjet af Nickelini | RedigerKirkus (Jun 1, 2001)
 
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Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither.

The Book of Job, 1:21
Slammerkin, noun, eighteenth century, of unknown origin.

1. A loose gown. 2. A loose woman.
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This book is for my agent and tireless ally, Caroline Davidson.
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There once was a cobbler called Saunders who died for eleven days.
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Dokumentarisk roman fra England om den prostituerede Mary Saunders (1747-1764), der blev henrettet for et mord, begået i 1763.

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