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The Charioteer de Mary Renault
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The Charioteer (original: 1953; edição: 2003)

de Mary Renault

MembrosResenhasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
9523116,307 (4.1)36
After enduring an injury at Dunkirk during World War II, Laurie Odell is sent to a rural veterans' hospital in England to convalesce. There he befriends the young, bright Andrew, a conscientious objector serving as an orderly. As they find solace and companionship together in the idyllic surroundings of the hospital, their friendship blooms into a discreet, chaste romance. Then one day, Ralph Lanyon, a mentor from Laurie's schoolboy days, suddenly reappears in Laurie's life, and draws him into a tight-knit social circle of world-weary gay men. Laurie is forced to choose between the sweet ideals of innocence and the distinct pleasures of experience. Originally published in the United States in 1959, The Charioteer is a bold, unapologetic portrayal of male homosexuality during World War II that stands with Gore Vidal's The City and the Pillar and Christopher Isherwood's Berlin Stories as a monumental work in gay literature… (mais)
Membro:kenaz
Título:The Charioteer
Autores:Mary Renault
Informação:Vintage (2003), Paperback, 352 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca
Avaliação:*****
Etiquetas:historical fiction, queer, well-loved books

Detalhes da Obra

The Charioteer de Mary Renault (1953)

  1. 20
    Maurice de E. M. Forster (emanate28)
    emanate28: Understated, loving, and in a way heartbreaking depiction of love between two men in repressive British society.
  2. 10
    Despised and Rejected de A. T. Fitzroy (mambo_taxi)
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» Veja também 36 menções

Mostrando 1-5 de 31 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Consider buying this in paperback instead of ebook
  Lillian_Francis | Feb 24, 2021 |
Read, favourite. ( )
  sasameyuki | May 8, 2020 |
First and foremost, I think this book is so important. I can't believe that I didn't know of its existence until I was in my twenties; especially since I've been out since I was 13. I think it's a must-read for queer folks of all sorts, especially gay men, as it explains a lot about issues of substance abuse and promiscuity in the queer community. I also think it's a must-read for anyone interested in WWII, as it provides some very interesting dynamic insights, particularly with regard to its portrayals of homosexuality in the armed forces.

Now, as for the book itself:

The writing is phenomenal, and the prose is beautiful. I really enjoyed sinking my teeth into the writing in a way that I usually don't in realistic/historical fiction (i.e. I prefer reading for plot in these genres). My only complaint is that sometimes it's so dense you actually lose the plot a little bit, or miss important events that are only alluded to in the actual prose.

The characters are (for the most part), fantastic. I love Laurie, and even though I frequently disagreed with his decisions, I sympathise with his struggles and experiences greatly, and I think he's an incredibly well-written and human character. Also, Andrew is everything good in the world bundled up as a character and I love him so much. Even the minor character of Alec is well-characterised, and I really enjoyed his final scene with Laurie in the hospital, as is Bunny. The only character I well and truly despise is Ralph. As I said in one of my updates, Ralph can go get fucked. He basically manipulates and pressures Laurie throughout the entirety of the book, and he represents every gay man I've ever loathed, who has pressured younger gays into sex or alcohol or drugs or some combination thereof. Gurl bye.

Finally, the plot: I really did enjoy the plot, though I think it's fair to say it's a slow-paced book, but the buildup of Laurie and Andrew's relationship in particular is well-paced and delivered well. My only complaint about the plot is that they didn't end up together!! Ralph is trash, Laurie! Pick Andrew!

All in all, though, a really great book which, if a bit dense at times, is so important for any variety of reasons, and I would highly recommend. I would even go so far as to say it's something which should be taught in schools.

P.S. Not one, but two dogs' deaths are mentioned in the second half of the books, and one of the scenes is really emotional. Please beware if you've not read it, and if you have, please contact me so we can form a support group because I am not over Gyp. ( )
1 vote Bran_Pap | Dec 5, 2019 |
A beautifully written love triangle set in a wounded veterans’ hospital during WWII. The title is taken from Plato’s allegory of the charioteer (don’t let it slip by like I almost did when it was briefly presented in the audiobook) that explains how mortals differ from the gods in their dual nature of moral purity and passion. In it, Laurie Odell, recovering from an injury he received at Dunkirk, finds himself torn between platonic idealism and emotional and physical fulfillment. The coming-of-age / coming-out aspect of the story is brilliantly done and fully expresses the main character’s uncertainty about his sexuality; at times it seems those around him understand him better than he does himself. His journey to self awareness and to the choice he eventually must make provides an introspective look into the need to love and be loved. ( )
  wandaly | Nov 25, 2019 |
Wow! This book blew me away. Renault is a brilliant writer, in descriptions and turns of phrase, in depth of characters, in the complexity of emotions, and in the gay experience. I love reading about gay history, but I would have loved this novel even if that wasn't the subject matter, because it had me riveted. I love that she leaves so much unsaid, for the reader to infer. It's much more naturalistic than most things I read. And there is a lot of symbolism beneath the surface, too. For example, Laurie's injury runs analogous to his queerness: he is constantly trying to hide it, to pass as 'normal', but he is forever marked by it, and unsure of his future as a result.

Time to lend this book to everyone I know!

(I also realized while reading this that romances are all about the suspense. I tear my way through them, full of tension, the same way I would something like Gone Girl. And this one keeps the tension up SO MUCH.) ( )
1 vote xiaomarlo | Apr 17, 2019 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 31 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
adicionado por gsc55 | editarBoys in our Books, groiup review (Aug 25, 2014)
 

» Adicionar outros autores

Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Renault, Maryautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Beale, Simon RussellIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Rodellar, María JoséTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado

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The Charioteer was edited for the 1959 US publication (the 1959 text is slightly shorter and lacks some, mostly descriptive, passages of the 1953 text). Most reprints after 1959 are based on the 1959 text although Longman in the UK brought new issues of the 1953 text at least until the 1970s.
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After enduring an injury at Dunkirk during World War II, Laurie Odell is sent to a rural veterans' hospital in England to convalesce. There he befriends the young, bright Andrew, a conscientious objector serving as an orderly. As they find solace and companionship together in the idyllic surroundings of the hospital, their friendship blooms into a discreet, chaste romance. Then one day, Ralph Lanyon, a mentor from Laurie's schoolboy days, suddenly reappears in Laurie's life, and draws him into a tight-knit social circle of world-weary gay men. Laurie is forced to choose between the sweet ideals of innocence and the distinct pleasures of experience. Originally published in the United States in 1959, The Charioteer is a bold, unapologetic portrayal of male homosexuality during World War II that stands with Gore Vidal's The City and the Pillar and Christopher Isherwood's Berlin Stories as a monumental work in gay literature

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