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House of Names
House of Names: A Novel | Colm Toibin
From the thrilling imagination of bestselling, award-winning Colm Tibn comes a retelling of the story of Clytemnestraspectacularly audacious, violent, vengeful, lustful, and instantly compellingand her children. I have been acquainted with the smell of death. So begins Clytemnestras tale of her own life in ancient Mycenae, the legendary Greek city from which her husband King Agamemnon left when he set sail with his army for Troy. Clytemnestra rules Mycenae now, along with her new lover Aegisthus, and together they plot the bloody murder of Agamemnon on the day of his return after nine years at war. Judged, despised, cursed by gods she has long since lost faith in, Clytemnestra reveals the tragic saga that led to these bloody actions: how her husband deceived her eldest daughter Iphigeneia with a promise of marriage to Achilles, only to sacrifice her because that is what he was told would make the winds blow in his favor and take him to Troy; how she seduced and collaborated with the prisoner Aegisthus, who shared her bed in the dark and could kill; how Agamemnon came back with a lover himself; and how Clytemnestra finally achieved her vengeance for his stunning betrayalhis quest for victory, greater than his love for his child. In House of Names, Colm Tibn brings a modern sensibility and language to an ancient classic, and gives this extraordinary character new life, so that we not only believe Clytemnestras thirst for revenge, but applaud it. He brilliantly inhabits the mind of one of Greek myths most powerful villains to reveal the love, lust, and pain she feels. Told in fours parts, this is a fiercely dramatic portrait of a murderess, who will herself be murdered by her own son, Orestes. It is Orestes story, too: his capture by the forces of his mothers lover Aegisthus, his escape and his exile. And it is the story of the vengeful Electra, who watches over her mother and Aegisthus with cold anger and slow calculation, until, on the return of her brother, she has the fates of both of them in her hands.
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Bklover
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This is a good example of what Litsy has done to me! This book arrived today from Book Depository. I ordered it because I checked. I know that I saw someone‘s post about and had to have it Right Now. But I certainly don‘t remember. Oy.
#LitsyRecommends

Bklover Not sure I‘ve used “Oy” correctly, but I‘ve always wanted to say it. Oy. 5mo
cathysaid 🤣🤣🤣 Oy vey. 5mo
Bklover @cathysaid 😊❤️ 5mo
Tianarose I love that book mark! 5mo
Bklover @Tianarose I love getting the bookmark with Book Depository orders. You never know what you‘re going to get! 5mo
89 likes5 comments
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Cinfhen
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After reading and loving a bunch of Greek Mythology retellings, I ordered this one! #BookMail #BookDepository #HappyDay 💕💕💕

batsy What a great bookmark, too (hurries to order more from Book Depo to get one of those 😂) 5mo
104 likes1 stack add1 comment
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ElectricKatyLand
Pickpick

Tóibín takes on a Greek myth and humanizes it. Told alternately from the perspective of Clytemnestra, Orestes, and Electra, the family members grapple with Agamemnon‘s decision to sacrifice his other daughter. Repercussions and murder and intrigue abound.

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Billypar
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#RedRightHand #MayMovieMagic
I know, it's a disembodied *left* hand and it's white against a red background, but close enough? The plot does relate: it tells the story of the blood on Agamemnon's hands. With Madeline Miller's popularity, I'm curious what other mythological reimaginings have come out recently: it's time I've tried one.
On the music side- I love this song and Nick Cave. Google the song title and 'Dr. Seuss' for some internet fun 😀

saresmoore I started this on audio, but got bored after the first part ended (read by Juliet Stevenson). I think I will like it in print, though! I‘ve really been enjoying all of the mythology retellings. 7mo
Billypar @saresmoore Yeah, I prefer nonfiction on audio. I haven't read any of the mythology retellings, but for no good reason: I think I would like them on balance. 7mo
rohit-sawant 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼 7mo
Cinfhen I‘m curious about this one!! Great choice and I‘ve loved both Miller books and this one as well 7mo
38 likes5 comments
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vivastory
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🎶...He had it coming
He had it coming
He only had himself to blame...🎶
Tóibin's memorable novel is based on several ancient Greek tragedies, with an emphasis on Aeschylus' Oresteia. Clytemnestra plots her revenge against her husband, Agamemnon as he returns home victorious from the Trojan War. Aeschylus' original trilogy not only dealt with themes of revenge, but laid the groundwork for Shakespearean cycles of violence & 👇

vivastory ultimately a move away from divine intervention & towards human laws & justice. #CellBlockTango #MusicalNewYear @Cinfhen 11mo
Cinfhen Love your take on this one!!! Great graphics too!!! Those Gods were fiesty‼️‼️‼️ 11mo
vivastory @Cinfhen Thanks! They definitely found interesting ways to keep themselves occupied, no small feat with their lifespans! 11mo
Suet624 💕💕 Toibin 11mo
79 likes3 stack adds4 comments
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AlaMich
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My handle is just the beginnings of my first and middle names. But Mich also works for Michigan, which is where my mother‘s family was from/still lives and also a place I love to visit!

@kaye

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Samplergal
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K: The Kite Runner. A: Anne of Green Gables R: The Remains of a Day. E: East of Eden N: Never Let me Go

LibrarianRyan 😁🤓👍🏻 1y
65 likes1 comment
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beaconhillbooks
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Pickpick

Not sure I liked the ending but still am glad I read it. It‘s based on some Greek myths so Tóibín is following the essays. Quick read. Lots of violence but interesting story. 3.5 stars.

13 likes1 stack add
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beaconhillbooks
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#currentlyreading #greekathon
Madeline Miller made me do it.

8 likes1 stack add
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Hildy
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Pickpick

This is a beautifully written retelling of the story of Clytemnestra and her children. This is a book to be savored.

DebReads4fun Welcome to Litsy! 2y
DebinHawaii Welcome to Litsy!! 🎉📚👍Hope you enjoy it here! Such a sweet sleepy kitty too! 🐱❤️ #catsoflitsy 2y
Bookladylinda Welcome to Litsy!!! 2y
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Chelleo Welcome to Litsy! New book friends are the best! We hope you‘re loving it here! Checkout these #Litsytips: http://bit.ly/litsytips and #LitsyHowTo videos: http://bit.ly/litsyvideos There‘s so many fun things to do: book exchanges, buddy reads, photo challenges and more! Check out #LitsyHappenings for details. @LitsyWelcomeWagon 2y
StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego Welcome to Litsy 👋😁 2y
Andrew65 Welcome to Litsy 🤗 2y
Eggs Welcome to Litsy 👋🏻 2y
37 likes1 stack add7 comments
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GirlMeetsBook
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I wanted a #litsyhandle that wasn‘t just a variation of my name (my usual), and I wanted something a little punny and catchy— so my name is a play on the show “Boy Meets World” — Girl Meets Book. ✌🏼

SilversReviews Love the story. 2y
Chelleo 😍 I thought of Boy Meets World when I was first matched with you. Don‘t think I‘ve ever watched the show though. 2y
RaimeyGallant Awesome. :) 2y
58 likes4 comments
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BadWolfGirl50
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Picked this up at the library! I can't wait to start reading!
#weekendread #firstof2018

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Sydsavvy
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This is so cool. Neither of these gifts by @EllieDottie were on my radar, and they should have been. I ❤️❤️❤️Newberry award winners, and I ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️the Iliad even more. Super excited to read!! 💃🏻📚🎁

Thank you again Ellie!!! 🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻. #bookgifts #litsyfriends

EllieDottie I‘m glad you like them!! 😊😊😊 2y
LeahBergen House of Names looks good! 2y
Sydsavvy @LeahBergen yes it does, doesn't it!!! 2y
rmaclean4 I am just finishing The Hoeyse Of Names and am very impressed with the writing. Great read...enjoy. 2y
Sydsavvy @rmaclean4 yay!!!! 2y
56 likes5 comments
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rmaclean4
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Second book I have read by Toibin. I find his style both compelling and easy to read.

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vivastory
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Pickpick

Using numerous Greek plays as his inspiration & foundation, Toibin connects & expands upon the story of Agammenon sacrificing his daughter, Iphigenia, & the repercussions. Emotionally the novel is more restrained than the originals. Contrasted with the tempered tone, the violence is shocking. Toibin is faithful to the world of the original, yet this is undoubtedly a modern novel. Belief in the gods is widespread, yet starting to decline. 👇

vivastory There's a sense of insignificance in the face of history. I found this novel to be immediately engaging. Highly recommend. 2y
saresmoore Sold. 2y
vivastory @saresmoore I think you'll really like it 2y
Suet624 I️ liked this book too. I️ was engaged from the start. 2y
Liz_M Oooh, I need to find this! 2y
72 likes9 stack adds5 comments
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rajithr
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Pickpick

I like authors who give voices to strong women, women with oodles of character. Hats off to Toibin‘s courage to give first person narrative for Clytemnestra and Electra. I found the Electra narrative the best.

Sydsavvy Just got this from @EllieDottie so excited!!! 🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻 2y
EllieDottie @Sydsavvy 😊😊😊 2y
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mklong
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Pickpick

I‘m on a Colm Toibin binge before he delivers this year‘s Ellmann Lectures at Emory in a few weeks. I‘ve always admired the clarity of his writing. It is lovely without ever being overwritten, so it feels effortless, which of course I know it isn‘t. That lovely clarity is on full display here. A warning though, if you are someone who needs to like the characters in a book, this is not for you.

Leelee.reads Great review! 2y
42 likes1 comment
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tjramsey75
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Pickpick

Anyone else love this like I do???? Ancient Greek retelling of Clytemnestra (had to look that spelling up) and Agamemnon. So good.

rajithr The first person narratives for the mother and the daughter were brilliant 2y
7 likes1 comment
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Wodehouse
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Pickpick

A retelling of the greek myth of Clytmnestra and Agammemnon. Very well done

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Suet624
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Pickpick

As a reviewer for The Spectator says, "Toibin makes the most pitiless Greek myths seem poignant."

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Suet624
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Reading during the warm up act for Johnny Rawls last night. This older gentleman was rockin' it Vermont style.

LauraBeth ❤️ his voice! 2y
Suet624 @LauraBeth I can't figure out why he came to this tiny town to sing and play for us. But it was great. 2y
LauraBeth He knew Vermonters were cool 😎 2y
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Suet624 @LauraBeth Hahaha. I wish I were still a drinker cuz he kept offering us Mississippi moonshine. I used to drink moonshine when I was in Tennessee and it was trippy. 😂 2y
LauraBeth @Suet624 ??a friend of mine went to NC to view the eclipse and I was texting her and asking about it and her response was: "I somehow ended up in the middle of the woods drinking 150 proof moonshine!" 2y
Suet624 @LauraBeth OMG. That's hysterical. I completely understand the "somehow" part. 2y
65 likes6 comments
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Suet624
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Diving in. Toibin is remarkable in his simplicity while telling a complicated tale. It gets me every time. And at the end of my week of caring for 2 little ones, my body feels a bit like the hand in this photo! I might be getting too old for this line of work.

47 likes2 stack adds
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Redjewel_7734
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My #BOTM came in & I got a few books on my roadtrip...not a bad #bookhaul 😊😎🤓

[DELETED] 3803335244 Nice Haul! 2y
mrsthilkey Very nice! 👍 2y
Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks A Thousand Splendid Suns 😓❤️ 2y
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mrozzz Pretty excellent I'd say!! 2y
AmyG Alot of good books! 2y
BooksForEmpathy House of Names!! I sooo loved this one. 2y
Cathythoughts I'm liking the sound of House Of Names😉 2y
Redjewel_7734 @ForeverNerdy @mrsthilkey @mrozzz @AmyG 🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻😊 2y
Redjewel_7734 @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks I've read one other of his books & loved it so when I could get this copy for less than $3, I couldn't pass it up 😁 2y
Redjewel_7734 @BooksForEmpathy @Cathythoughts I've heard such amazingness about it that I just had to have it!!!! 2y
Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks @Redjewel_7734 I have The Kite Runner, but haven't read it yet... 2y
Cathythoughts Ah, I see he wrote Brooklyn! Loved the movie 😉 2y
Redjewel_7734 @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks I've read And The Mountains Echoed a few years ago & it was sooo good. 2y
Redjewel_7734 @Cathythoughts I've seen so much of his writing that has interested me, but this will be the first I've read...If it's as good as I hope, I may have to binge his other works 😊 2y
MyNamesParadise Whoa that's an amazing haul!!!! 2y
141 likes1 stack add16 comments
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ChantelMcCray
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#WEEKENDGIVEAWAY @Liberty The Greeks. Making dysfunctional families the norm since 800 BCE. #houseofnames is a brilliant retelling of the family saga of Agamemnon, Clytemnestra and their children. #colmtoibin always gets it right.

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ChantelMcCray
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A cloudy morning is ripe for cappuccino & Greeks. #houseofnames #morningtime

DebinHawaii Welcome to Litsy!! 🎉📚👍😀Hope you enjoy it here! 2y
MrBook Welcome to @Litsy ! Just warning you now, you won't want to leave. 😆👏🏻 2y
5 likes1 stack add2 comments
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LonesomeReader
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I loved Toibin's excellent new novel which retells the myth of Agamemnon & his extremely dysfunctional family. Instead of focusing on the perspective of the warrior king he shows the points of view of his wife and children.

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Aluciddreamstate
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My entertainment while supper is cooking 🍳

32 likes2 stack adds
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BooksForEmpathy
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Pickpick

2 things:

1. Blueberries in my salad was the best decision I could have made today. Arugula + tuna + avocado + pickled red onions + blueberries! Sprinkled with cotija. YUM.

2. Loved this book. I know the story well thanks to a college Greek tragedy course, and so a retelling of it was a thrill for me to read. Toibin's elegant and deliberate writing explored each character's inner psyches SO perfectly and built up to a hugely satisfying ending.

Cinfhen Great review, delicious looking salad 🥗 @KarenUK doesn't that salad make you drool?!? 2y
KarenUK @cinfhen it totally does! If only my food looked that pretty 😂 @BooksForEmpathy 2y
LitsyGoesPostalOG Looks delish as per usual 🙌🏽 2y
110 likes6 stack adds3 comments
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BooksForEmpathy
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So I may have cheated on The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet last night with this one, but I could NOT resist. I'm almost finished and my heart sings and dances and breaks when it is close to me. It's a retelling of The Oresteia and it is sublime. If you like Greek tragedies or The Song of Achilles, read this!Agamemnon sacrifices his oldest daughter, Iphigenia, and his wife, Clytemnestra, seeks revenge and the family brutally falls apart 💔.

Jaimelire I must say I love the way you eat! All your post make me drool. And healthy too. 2y
MeganAnn I just finished this one. So good!! I am in love with the way Toibin writes. 😍 2y
monkeygirlsmama Your meal looks amazeballs. 🤤 2y
Jess_Read_This 1. Can you please just open a restaurant right by my house? 2. I love Toibin! I have to check this one out. 2y
110 likes3 stack adds4 comments
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Jessicav
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Pickpick

I loved this. The parts told from Clytemnestra's point of view were particularly strong. These stories just never age and there's a reason we keep retelling them. This one is worth your time.

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Caitlinyorkebon
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Coco and I sitting down to enjoy our new book.

TheBookDream Eeeee! Cute dog! #pugsoflitsy 2y
5 likes1 comment
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MeganAnn
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Camping and reading is one of my favorite summer activities! I loved Brooklyn by Toibin so I picked up this one when I saw it at the library last week. It does not disappoint! He has a unique way of writing about his characters that draws you into their lives and makes you care about them in ways no other author I've ever read has done. #camping

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tstan
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I'm about halfway through this, and really liking it. It's based on The Iliad and the Greek plays based on the Trojan War and the Odyssey. Told from the POVs of Clytemnestra, Orestes, and Electra, it focuses on revenge, family, and misinformation. I think @sprainedbrain would like this one- it has a similar setting and feel.

sprainedbrain Ooooooh. Thanks for sharing! Stacking this now. 2y
tstan Good thing you knew I was talking about Song of Achilles! 😂 2y
sprainedbrain @tstan well, since I still haven't stopped thinking about Song of Achilles, it was easy. 😂 2y
11 likes3 comments
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TheBookNess
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Pickpick

I went into this without really seeing what it was about and really enjoyed it. The story keeps you going with it's twists and turns and different points of view

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capriciousreader
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What. A. Beginning.

awonderinglife Oh I can't wait to read this one!! 3y
22 likes1 stack add1 comment
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JenP
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Squee. I saw one of my favorite authors today. Got so star struck when he signed my book that I forgot how to speak and just stared at him like a deer in headlights

LeahBergen 👏🏻👏🏻 3y
diovival Aww! Glad you got to meet! 3y
lynneamch Loved Brooklyn, so bought several of his others. Which should I read first? 3y
JenP @lynneamch my favorite is Heather Blazing but I love most of them. If you like Henry James, then The Master is a good one. 3y
lynneamch Thanks Jen! 3y
46 likes1 stack add5 comments
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bookculture
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🖐📖

Nat_Reads Cool pic 3y
Yeah_I_Read Both were good. Nice pic 😊 3y
102 likes4 stack adds2 comments
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Luvtoread
Mehso-so

Stunning beginning as the focus is on Clytemnestra, but once the narrative shifts to Orestes and Electra the story drags. I loved the beginning, thought the middle was slow, and disliked the ending and thought it was confusing. Parts of this book are written so beautifully though. Mixed thoughts here. I voluntarily reviewed an eARC copy of the book from NetGalley.

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bookculture
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We're seeing red on this exciting new release Tuesday! Happy pub day to these fascinating, crimson reads and plenty more! 🚨🎯❤

KathyWheeler What is the book on the top? 3y
104 likes4 stack adds2 comments
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bookshopsc
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Pickpick

Murder, revenge and unforgivable transgressions scar the pages of Tóibín‘s latest novel. In his brutal retelling of the classical Greek tragedy, Clytemnestra vows revenge after Agamemnon‘s sacrificial slaughter of their eldest daughter. I appreciated the first-person narrative accounts of the women in this book, although they were rife with hostility. Not recommended for the faint of heart! - Ashley

45 likes9 stack adds
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Moray_Reads
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Panpan

What an utterly lifeless retelling of the story of Clytemnestra! Who would have thought that a tale so full of murder, deceit and betrayal could be so dreadfully dull? Considering the terrible violent acts that hatred and vengeance spur these characters on to there isn't a single palpable emotion. Better to skip Tóibín's effort and read the fantastic work of Christa Wolf (see comments for tagged books)

batsy Oh no! There was so much potential here because the use of Greek myth. I have this as an ARC & have to read it soon. Heard only wonderful things about Wolf, excited to have her books to look forward to. 3y
46 likes3 comments
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Yeah_I_Read
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Pickpick


The retelling of the myth Clytemnestra and her husband Agamemnon. Agamemnon tricked his wife into bringing their daughter Iphigenia to him by saying she was to marry Achilles. His actual intention was to have her sacrificed.
Clytemnestra begins plotting her revenge and takes Aegisthus into her confidence. Together they plan and execute his murder. The fallout from this act greatly affects her, her other children, and their community. Good story

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Yeah_I_Read
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So excited to read this #egalley from netgalley.com and Simon and Schuster publishing!!
#currentread review coming soon!

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BookHermit
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Why, yes, I *am* a winner!

LeahBergen 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 3y
Simona Congrats! 🍾 3y
31 likes2 comments
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rjsthumbelina
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Bailedbailed

Whew, that was not what I wanted. This could be one of those books that others find amazing but I cant stand. I didnt make it very far before giving up. I couldnt bring myself to keep going.

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Well-ReadNeck
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Mehso-so

This novel is a modern retelling of the bloody and twisted story of the House of Atreus. Well written, it reads like historical novelizations is the de Medici family or the early Tudor kings. But, did this particular story need retelling? #netgalley

AmyWrites I think he's a very blah storyteller... 3y
Cortg I wasn't impressed with Brooklyn. 3y
101 likes4 stack adds2 comments
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jenniferw88

Just pre-ordered this on Kindle as we are currently looking at Bath Literature Festival programme. Dad wants totally different things to me ☹️ but we may be going up on Sunday 21st May 🙂

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myexordium
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Cannot wait to read this, I'm a huge fan of Colm Tóibín. His latest novel is due for release in May.

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Marchpane
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#2017MostAnticipatedBooks - part 1

Somehow I don't think the TBR is going to shrink anytime soon! 📚📚📚

#seasonsreadings2016

Moray_Reads How strange that two of ours are the same and that they're in identical positions in the collages 😂 3y
RanaElizabeth Pachinko looks really great! 3y
Marchpane @Moray_Reads LOL 😂 and posted within moments of each other too 👊 3y
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Marchpane @RanaElizabeth doesn't it? So looking forward to that one. 3y
irre Pachinko was great! 3y
Marchpane @irre good to hear! 3y
RealLifeReading (Excuse me while I go take some notes) 3y
mhillis Oh I can't wait to read 3y
130 likes4 stack adds8 comments