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Undue Influence
(Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read)

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Published:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group 2010
Status:
Available from OverDrive
Description
In Undue Influence, acclaimed novelist Anita Brookner proves once again that even in the most closely circumscribed of lives, hearts can venture into unknown-and potentially explosive-territory.
Claire Pitt is nothing if not a practical young woman, living a life in contemporary London that is to all appearances placid, orderly and consciously lacking in surprise. And yet Claire's tangled interior life gives the lie to that illusion. She is prone to vivid speculation about the lives of others, and to fantasies about her own fate that lead her into a courtship so strange that even she wonders at its power to compel her. Martin Gibson and his chronically ill wife Cynthia come to depend on Claire to an extent that is nothing short of baffling, and yet Claire becomes ever bolder in her pursuit of their acquaintance-and, ultimately, of Martin's elusive affections. The result, a potent tale of urban loneliness and the chance intersections that assuage it, constitutes one of Brookner's finest and most psychologically acute achievements.
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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
03/31/2010
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780307492364
ASIN:
B003DYGOZU
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Anita Brookner. (2010). Undue Influence. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Anita Brookner. 2010. Undue Influence. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Anita Brookner, Undue Influence. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2010.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Anita Brookner. Undue Influence. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2010. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Grouped Work ID:
506cc232-9669-f025-f79e-fa7e379b156b
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Needs Update?:
No
Date Added:
Jun 12, 2018 15:09:49
Date Updated:
Jun 12, 2018 15:09:49
Last Metadata Check:
Jul 03, 2022 03:09:46
Last Metadata Change:
Jul 03, 2022 03:09:46
Last Availability Check:
Jul 03, 2022 03:09:49
Last Availability Change:
Aug 21, 2021 19:36:44
Last Grouped Work Modification Time:
Jul 04, 2022 02:08:30

OverDrive Product Record

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imprint
Vintage
publishDate
2010-03-31T05:00:00+01:00
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title
Undue Influence
fullDescription
In Undue Influence, acclaimed novelist Anita Brookner proves once again that even in the most closely circumscribed of lives, hearts can venture into unknown-and potentially explosive-territory.
Claire Pitt is nothing if not a practical young woman, living a life in contemporary London that is to all appearances placid, orderly and consciously lacking in surprise. And yet Claire's tangled interior life gives the lie to that illusion. She is prone to vivid speculation about the lives of others, and to fantasies about her own fate that lead her into a courtship so strange that even she wonders at its power to compel her. Martin Gibson and his chronically ill wife Cynthia come to depend on Claire to an extent that is nothing short of baffling, and yet Claire becomes ever bolder in her pursuit of their acquaintance-and, ultimately, of Martin's elusive affections. The result, a potent tale of urban loneliness and the chance intersections that assuage it, constitutes one of Brookner's finest and most psychologically acute achievements.
reviews
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        Starred review from November 29, 1999
        To 29-year-old Claire Pitt, a self-contained single woman living in London, her mother's death is more than an ordinary bereavement: it is the beginning of a process of self-doubt and a failure of nerve. Left alone in the apartment that she and her mother shared, Claire gradually realizes that she craves "the permanence of someone's affections"--and the state of marriage, which she has always despised. Having vaguely pitied her widowed mother, Claire now feels sorry for the elderly spinster she works for at a second-hand bookstore. Faintly hoping to avoid these two women's lonely fates, Claire now sees that she is as alone and vulnerable as they were, and that her sexual freedom--exercised in quick, anonymous couplings that she initiates and then abandons--has not given her any basis for a lasting relationship. Opportunity seems to appear when Martin Gibson, a handsome, wealthy, but shallow and self-absorbed ex-professor, comes into the bookstore. When Martin's invalid wife dies soon afterwards, Claire sets her cap for him and fantasizes the life she will have--notwithstanding her skeptical nature and the absence of love on both sides. In Brookner's expert hands, Claire's realization that weak, unworthy Martin will not neatly fulfill her dreams is accomplished with lapidarian skill. At first Claire is complacent about her own shortcomings ("I'd lay claim to few moral qualities"), but she has no qualms about her behavior. She is an opportunist who views the world through ironic eyes. Yet Brookner's portrait of Claire's disillusionment and growing fear, as she descends from a competent independence to a state of frightened wandering in the heart's desert, is etched with quiet compassion. The novel contains a fine brace of supporting characters whose behavior implicitly reflects on Claire's fall into limbo, and Brookner's narrative skill works like a scalpel exposing the complexity of each of their lives. As she has done many times before (Falling Slowly, etc.), but never with more acuity or grace, Brookner illuminates the inner turmoil of lonely people living courageously while the door to the future begins to swing closed.

popularity
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shortDescription
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Claire Pitt is nothing if not a practical young woman, living a life in contemporary London that is to all appearances placid, orderly and consciously lacking in surprise. And yet Claire's tangled interior life gives the lie to that illusion. She is prone to vivid speculation about the lives of others, and to fantasies about her own fate that lead her into a courtship so strange that even she wonders at its power to compel her. Martin Gibson and his chronically ill wife Cynthia come to depend on Claire to an extent that is nothing short of baffling, and yet Claire becomes ever bolder in her pursuit of their acquaintance-and, ultimately, of Martin's elusive affections. The result, a potent tale of urban loneliness and the chance intersections that assuage it, constitutes one of...
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