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Divisadero
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Published:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group 2007
Status:
Available from OverDrive

Description

From the celebrated author of The English Patient and Anil's Ghost comes a remarkable, intimate novel of intersecting lives that ranges across continents and time. In the 1970s in Northern California a father and his teenage daughters, Anna and Claire, work their farm with the help of Coop, an enigmatic young man who makes his home with them. Theirs is a makeshift family, until it is shattered by an incident of violence that sets fire to the rest of their lives. Divisadero takes us from San Francisco to the raucous backrooms of Nevada's casinos and eventually to the landscape of southern France. As the narrative moves back and forth through time and place, we find each of the characters trying to find some foothold in a present shadowed by the past.

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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
05/29/2007
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780307267023
ASIN:
B000QW7R8U

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Citations

APA Citation (style guide)

Michael Ondaatje. (2007). Divisadero. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Michael Ondaatje. 2007. Divisadero. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Michael Ondaatje, Divisadero. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2007.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Michael Ondaatje. Divisadero. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2007.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2022. 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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Date Added:
Jun 12, 2018 17:46:04
Date Updated:
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      • bioText: Michael Ondaatje is the author of four previous novels, a memoir, a nonfiction book on film, and eleven books of poetry. His novel The English Patient won the Booker Prize. Born in Sri Lanka, he moved to Canada in 1962 and now lives in Toronto.
      • name: Michael Ondaatje
imprint
Vintage
publishDate
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title
Divisadero
fullDescription
From the celebrated author of The English Patient and Anil's Ghost comes a remarkable, intimate novel of intersecting lives that ranges across continents and time. In the 1970s in Northern California a father and his teenage daughters, Anna and Claire, work their farm with the help of Coop, an enigmatic young man who makes his home with them. Theirs is a makeshift family, until it is shattered by an incident of violence that sets fire to the rest of their lives. Divisadero takes us from San Francisco to the raucous backrooms of Nevada's casinos and eventually to the landscape of southern France. As the narrative moves back and forth through time and place, we find each of the characters trying to find some foothold in a present shadowed by the past.
reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: San Francisco Chronicle
      • content:

        "Ravishing and intricate. . . . Unforgettable." --Pico Iyer, The New York Review of Books"My life always stops for a new book by Michael Ondaatje. . . . [Divisadero is] a mosaic of profound dignity, with an elegiac quietude that only the greatest of writers can achieve. . . . Ondaatje's finest novel to date." --Jhumpa Lahiri"The more you give Divisadero, the more it gives in return . . . . [Ondaatje] is a writer of intense acuity." --The New York Times"Brilliant. . . . Divisadero plays whimsically with chronology and memory, with fantasy and historical fact."

      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        April 16, 2007
        Ondaatje's oddly structured but emotionally riveting fifth novel opens in the Northern California of the 1970s. Anna, who is 16 and whose mother died in childbirth, has formed a serene makeshift family with her same-age adopted sister, Claire, and a taciturn farmhand, Coop, 20. But when the girls' father, otherwise a ghostly presence, finds Anna having sex with Coop and beats him brutally, Coop leaves the farm, drawing on a cardsharp's skills to make an itinerant living as a poker player. A chance meeting years later reunites him with Claire. Runaway teen Anna, scarred by her father's savage reaction, resurfaces as an adult in a rural French village, researching the life of a Gallic author, Jean Segura, who lived and died in the house where she has settled. The novel here bifurcates, veering almost a century into the past to recount Segura's life before WWI, leaving the stories of Coop, Claire and Anna enigmatically unresolved. The dreamlike Segura novella, juxtaposed with the longer opening section, will challenge readers to uncover subtle but explosive links between past and present. Ondaatje's first fiction in six years lacks the gut punch of Anil's Ghost
        and the harrowing meditation on brutality that marked The English Patient
        , but delivers his trademark seductive prose, quixotic characters and psychological intricacy.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        June 1, 2007
        Both beautiful and baffling, Ondaatje's most recent novel (after 2000's "Anil's Ghost") opens with the portrait of a complex family suddenly imploding in the Northern California wilderness. Anna and Claire have been raised as sisters by Anna's father (both mothers died in childbirth), with a neighbor boy named Coop also in attendance, his family having been battered to death by a hired hand. Anna and Claire both have feelings for Coop, but it's Anna who enters into an affair with him, precipitating an act of violence that flings the family apart. Subsequent passages detail Coop's desperate gambling, Anna's isolation in distant France, Coop and Claire's chance meeting years later, and the family history of poet Lucien Segura, whose works Anna has been studying. These passage are evocatively and delicately rendered, but their connections aren't; the book falls apart into lovely pieces that the reader has a hard time collecting. Oddly, this sense of dislocation does "not" seem to be the point, for a sense of family connection reverberates faintly throughout despite the disjointed narrative. Of course, dedicated readers will want to investigate, but others may be confounded. For literary collections. [See Prepub Alert, "LJ" 2/1/07.]Barbara Hoffert, "Library Journal"

        Copyright 2007 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        Starred review from April 1, 2007
        The new novel by the author of The English Patient (1992) is easy to read, not because its theme and plot are simple but because the reader simply wants to read it. Told from alternating points of view, the narrative might not have worked. But Ondaatjes experience and skill prevent fatal fragmentation. The story begins in California in the 1970s, with a quiet man who lost his wife in childbirth raising his two daughters, Anna and Claire, and tending his farm with the help of a young man, Coop, who he has more or less adopted. When the maturing Anna and Coop fall into a sexual relationship and are discovered, much to his horror, by Annas father, a bolt of violence springs up like a ferocious storm, and Anna and Coop flee forevernever to see each other again. The shadowno, the determining forceof this horrible event on how these three individuals lead the rest of their lives is the tripartite tale Ondaatje follows over the course of the next several years. So the reader experiences an initial sense of segmentation, but it dissipates in the face of strong thematic connections between what are not really segments at all, but rather, layers to the story. The novels title, not idly chosen, refers to a San Francisco street name derived from the Spanish word for division. What this at once powerful and beautiful novel is about is the division of these three lives into two parts, a bifurcation that occurred when Annas father found things out and exploded.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2007, American Library Association.)

      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        July 30, 2007
        Davis (American Splendor
        ) reads Ondaatje's puzzle of a novel delicately, as if hesitant to jostle a single piece out of place. Often playing emotionally frazzled characters on screen, Davis is far more understated here in offering up Ondaatje's hybrid narrative—one that goes from 1970s San Francisco to early 20th-century France, linking past and present with loose tendrils of memory and history. She does a fine job with the tricky French names and nomenclature, and puts her natural gifts as an actor to good use with her subtle, understated, well-oiled reading. Davis still sounds as no-nonsense as ever, but her skilled reading offers a good deal more patience and tenderness than her often-testy characters do. Simultaneous release with the Knopf hardcover (Reviews, Apr. 16).

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      • source: Scotiabank Giller
      • value: Scotiabank Giller Prize Nominee
      • source: Governor General of Canada
      • value: Governor General's Literary Award
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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
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      • description: Fiction / Literary
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      • description: Fiction / Psychological
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      • description: Fiction / Small Town & Rural