book online Ghostwalk – lavitamin.us
book online Ghostwalk – lavitamin.us
Rebecca Stott ´ 0 free download
That I think a NYT book reviewer gets it totally wrong but that s the case with Rebecca Stott s novel Ghostwalk I should have been tipped off by the trite final sentence of the review Stott s home terrain however is the river riven landscape of the human heart What does the river stand for in this sentence Besides river and riven have the exact same etymology Pure blatherBut enough nit picking on the review The novel takes place in contemporary Cambridge where Lydia Brooke s intermittent lover a controversial neuroscientist asks her to finish his mother s book after she mysteriously drowns in the river The book is a study of Newton s alchemy that purports to explain how he resorted crime to attain a fellowship in his college Yes this is ind of a spoiler but you d figure this out uickly on your own Meanwhile an animal rights group is launching terrorist attacks against the neuroscientist and his associates and ghosts are trying to communicate with Lydia about events in the 17th centuryThis book wants to be Foucault s Pendulum but it lacks both the detail and the range In the end it s not about alchemy or neuroscience or even ghosts it seems to be about the very thinly argued case against Newton and Lydia s affair The review lauds scholarly authority of the book but opening it at random we find passages like theseHow long did we sit there Dilys and I I watched the shadows lengthen across her garden a blackening shadow theatre across the vibrant emerald of her lawn I watched the honeysuckle tendrils blow in the wind the soft rain the late flies a crow I was nowhere and somewhere Lost between a river and the Fens between the seventeenth century and the twenty first between scepticism and belief pg 170 That night Cameron Brown I began to feel a new ind of power I touched the back of your neck with my eyes from your mother s bedroom window through the rain and made you turn towards me I watched you turn briefly towards the house glance up at the upper windows follow the line of the roof there But you couldn t see me up in Elizabeth s bedroom in the dark so you turned back towards the river pg 205This gauzy musing is constant Lydia even fantasizes about her lover presenting a PowerPoint at a conference As for Newton we get scenes here and there excerpted from the book Lydia s working on but it s a very small part of this novel and likely to be a disappointment to anyone with experience of say AS Byatt s burst fullgrown from the skull of Zeus inventionsIf you want to read a novel about alchemists and conspiracies read Foucault s Pendulum If you want to read a novel about skulduggery at a seventeenth century English university read An Instance of the Fingerpost If you want to read a novel about neuroscience I recall having enjoying Galatea 20 but that was a long time ago so don t uot. Ass prism and has left behind her unfinished magnum opus a book on Isaac Newton's alchemy Her son turns to.
E me on it If however you enjoy ghost stories reports on English gardens and weather and descriptions of lovahs contemplating each other over the course of their daily lives go ahead and read Ghostwalk Well that was different In theory this book should have been my jam The story opens with Elizabeth Vogelsang being found dead in a river near her Cambridge home clutching a glass prism in her hand Elizabeth is a 17th century scholar who specializes in Isaac Newton and her death interrupts her work on a book exploring Newton s interest in alchemy Elizabeth s son Cameron recruits Lydia Brooke a writer friend of Elizabeth and Cameron s former lover to ghost write the rest of Elizabeth s book Along the way Lydia tries to unravel the secrets in Elizabeth s research secrets that might have led to her death I m going to go ahead and get the most absurd thing about this book out of the way first so we can acknowledge it and move on Okay so you want to now who Alpha and Omega killed Elizabeth right The book is set up like a murder mysteryhistoric fictionsupernatural mashup so younow the solution to the murder is going to be good ReadyA ghost did it The murderer is literally a ghost Don t worry we ll get back to that I just wanted to give everyone a vague idea of where this crazy train is headed because that s than Rebecca Stott did for meuick note I purchased this book secondhand however it s still an ARC so all uoted passages may be different in the final published versionI started to sense that something was wrong by the first chapter After a prologue where we see Elizabeth s body being found by her son Chapter One begins from Lydia s perspective She describes the days after Elizabeth s death and then suddenly we re in a police interrogation room and Lydia s narration informs us that Elizabeth Vogelsang drowned in September 2002 the first of three deaths that would become the subject of a police investigation four months laterOkay let s take a minute to sort that out because there s a lot of information there So the book isn t going to focus just on Elizabeth s death but also two other people Presumably we will meet these people at some point in the narrative and grow to care about them and their deaths will be appropriately placed in the narrative to maintain suspense yes to the first sort of to the second nope to the third Also since the police investigation happens four months after Elizabeth s death we ve got a relatively short time frame to work with And Lydia will be very close to these deaths Okay coolBut then only a few paragraphs later Stott drops this on us I would have to be careful and alert here at the Parkside Police Station Very alert They had arrested Lily RidlerThat line comes seven pages into the novel It is the first time that Lily Ridler is mentioned and it will be way way too. Lydia Brooke a young writer and friend of Elizabeth's and asks her to complete the last chapter of the book.
I did not finish this book and my only regret is that I spent way too much time trying to like it I found nothing to like It claims to be a haunting literary thriller and a historical mystery involving Isaac Newton s alchemy Why I thought anything involving Isaac Newton and his alchemy would be interesting is beyond me now Turns out I have no interest in Isaac Newton or alchemy or the 17th century At least not as portrayed in this book The entire framework of the book is awkward it is told in the 1st person by a woman who attends a funeral for a woman who died while writing a book on Isaac Newton not exactly an attention grabber introduction The narrator apparently had an affair with the dead woman s son and throughout the story she refers to this ex lover as you she seems to be writing a memoir of what is happening or has happened as the reader The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air knows virtually nothing about the narrator or you it is really hard to give a darn about anyone The narrator is asked by her ex lover to ghostwrite the remaining chapters of the Newton book that his mother didn t finish if that isn t an exciting premise I don tnow what would be Plus this ex lover works for some sort of a scientific research company and there is a second story about animal testing protesters which supposedly connects with Newton Blah blah blah Maybe the pace really picks up in the second half of the book maybe not I don t really care THis is the best book that I have ever read that I could only rate two stars I loved Neal Stephenson s Baroue Cycle and I couldn t wait to pick up another book that might take a deeper look into Isaac Newton s alchemical experiments The research that was done before this book was written is incredible and the passages in which Elizabeth Vogelsang s The Alchemist the fictitious biography of Newton at the center of Ghostwalk is excerpted are very good We learn about glass making in seventeenth century Europe the plague in England the vast networks of alchemists operating in Europe at the time One of the major themes of the novel is that the past bleeds into the present but the author can t seem to get her many plot devices set in the present to bleed into one another making the novel as a whole fractured and nearly incomprehesible In the end the author had to through in some secret shadow empire of pharmaceutical companies and arms dealers into the mix a device that was not necessary to the plot of the novel or perhaps was thrown in because she couldn t find an end and didn t add anything except maybe a political jab at arms dealers and pharmaceutical companies This novel had so much promise but it failed for its lack of cohesion the lack of empathy engendered in the reader for the characters and the waste of all of that great historical conspiracy in favor of modern ones It s not often. When Elizabeth a reclusive historian is found drowned in a tributary of the River Cam she is clutching a gl.
Rebecca Stott was born in Cambridge in 1964 and raised in Brighton in a large Plymouth Brethren community She studied English and Art History at York University and then completed an MA and PhD whilst raising her son Jacob born in 1984She is the author of several academic books on Victorian literature and culture two books of non fiction including a partial biography of Charles Darwin and a