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Спи, бледная сестра

ISBN: 5-699-18375-2
Год издания: 2006
Издательство: Эксмо
Серия: Bella Donna
Цикл: Готические новеллы, книга №2
Язык: Русский

Впервые! Бестселлер классика современной литературы, автора "Шоколада": викторианский готический роман о Лондоне XIX века, история бесприютного призрака убитой девочки, который спустя много лет после смерти нашел свою сестру по духу, и вместе они жестоко отомстили якобы респектабельному и праведному, а на деле до мозга костей испорченному трагическому убийце.


Лучшая рецензия на книгу

Оценка El_nomeolvides:   5  /  3.5

Ах, Джоанн!... твои книги - сладкий нектар для меня, как для любителя книжных страниц и атмосферных историй.
Как этой женщине удается так проникновенно описать что бы то ни было?..
Перед нами произведение стилизованное под литературу 19 века. Взаимоотношения художника и натурщицы, мужчины и девочки, мужа и жены.

Генри Честер - ему за 40, художник, мечтающий о признании, о том, чтобы его работы сразили критиков, чтобы общество оценило его талант. Неприступный и жесткий мужчина, который непримирим к порокам людей - страсть и вожделение - это постыдный грех, а обладание плотью - почти приравнивается к смертоубийству.
В его жизни наступает перемены после того, как он видит маленькую девочку Эффи, пока малышка гуляет с матерью в парке. Она - идеал чистоты, ее бледность, ее лицо, ее руки...Эффи… Развернуть 

Дополнительная информация об издании

Формат 130х200 мм
Твердый переплет, 416 стр.


This was my second novel, published the same year my daughter was born. My original publishers didn't like it much because they had been expecting another vampire novel, but I was far happier with this story than with The Evil Seed. What made me less happy was that my new publishers had decided to market it as "horror" - in fact it was a kind of Gothic ghost story set in Victorian London against a backdrop of brothels, sewers and artists' studios, and I still think it deserved better. Most importantly, it was through Pale Sister that I met my friend Christopher Fowler, who found me an agent, kept me going through some tough and depressing times, and still continues to do so. What's more, he's a terrific writer, and I wish my stories were half as good as his.

I owe a great deal of Pale Sister to Wilkie Collins' The Woman in White, as well as to the story of John Ruskin and Rose la Touche, and the lives and works of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. I collected a vast amount of authentic (and mostly unsavoury) detail from a book called The Other Victorians, as well as Walter - My Secret Life. I was delighted to be able to use Thomas Cooper Gotch's troubling and beautiful painting 'The Child Enthroned' as the cover (although my first choice was Graham Ovenden's equally troubling and beautiful 'Girl in Shadows'). Although I had already used the two-strand past-present narrative in The Evil Seed, in Pale Sister I evolved the multiple-first-person narrator technique which I later used in Chocolat, and which still remains my favourite.

(c) http://www.joanne-harris.co.uk


Henry Chester is an artist in the late 19th century, specializing in sentimental paintings of young girls. At the same time fascinated and repelled by female sensuality, he has spent much of his career searching for the Perfect Woman - one who embodies his conflicting ideals of innocence, passivity and sexual availability. In Effie, a life model only nine years old, he finally believes he has found her. As soon as she is old enough, Henry marries Effie, having moulded and educated her to suit his purposes, but the infatuated young woman soon realizes that the man she has married is not the loving father-figure she imagined him to be. Repressed and infantilized by her husband, increasingly dependent on the laudanum he gives her for her "nerves" and desperate for affection, Effie becomes involved with the cheerily amoral Mose Harper, and enters an illicit affair with him which leads her into a dangerous underworld of prostitution, revenge, deceit and murder. Who is Fanny Miller, the brass-tongued madame? Why does she seem so familiar? Who is Marta, her dark daughter, lost years ago and yet still somehow present in the shadows of her silken rooms? And when does friendship end and possession begin?

(c) http://www.joanne-harris.co.uk


Sleep, Pale Sister is a reissue of Joanne Harris's (Chocolat) second published book. It's quite a departure from her more recent works. Sleep, Pale Sister is written in a style reminiscent to that of the gothic novel and is narrated by several different characters, each confessing to an audience, the reader, their version of what really happened to two of the main characters. Effie is introduced as a young girl who gains the attention of artist Henry Chester, who for some reason is attracted to little girls such as she and spends his time painting them, aspiring to becoming a well-known and respected artist. Effie grows up under the eyes and guidance of Henry, with the approval of her mother, and he eventually marries her when she is seventeen and he is in his forties.

The most important character in this book is probably Henry Chester, a very troubled man who will at first gain the reader’s respect; but as the novel progresses, troubling details about Henry’s personal views and desires will be revealed, demonstrating the type of person Henry really is. His obsession over the young Effie is definitely that: an obsession. And while he professes to truly love her, his love is a selfish one in which he imprisons her mentally and physically so that she eventually becomes ill. Her life becomes such that she cannot make a move without his approval.

Henry’s viewpoint of this story is one of an innocent loving man, and that he has been tempted by Effie’s ways as if she were a sorceress. He views sex as a sin and a form of disgusting pleasure; thus he finds ways to avoid being with her as “husband and wife.” He has always been attracted to her purity and virginity, and as she grows up he tries to shape her into the type of woman he thinks God intended her to be. In his world, women as a whole are born with sin and grow up to tempt men to do things that are impure. Effie, in his eyes, was the exception, at least in the beginning.

When Effie narrates the story from her viewpoint, she tells her tale of woe, being married to a very controlling man such as Mr. Chester (she is not allowed to call him by his first name). She grows up learning from her parents that sex is nothing to be ashamed of, that it is a healthy manifestation of love between a husband and a wife. She is bewildered after she learns that Mr. Chester wants nothing to do with her physically and tries to keep her chaste and pure. When they do engage in sex, he feels that she’s tempted him, and he blames her for her wicked ways.

Effie is typical of the women of her day (the late 1800s), weak and often taken to sick - or at least that is what it often seems like to the casual observer, and especially to Henry. But it is Henry who makes sure she is constantly given her laudanum, so she is nearly always in a state of what appears to be fatigue. Effie is now in a loveless marriage, and after a miscarriage, she slowly wastes away.

Enter Moses Harper, who becomes a protege of Henry's and also falls for the beautiful Effie. He, too, has his story to tell, as does Fanny Miller, a woman of ill repute with a huge secret that ties into Henry's sick past. Between these four narrators, the story comes into being and the reader will be immersed in this very sensational gothic novel of deception, betrayal and greed.

For the lucky reader who comes across this novel, it without a doubt will be enjoyed, especially if one is partial towards gothic or Victorian settings. The only real problem with the novel is that it is a bit too long and could have been cut shorter. At the same time, one may not want this book to end, as the story is very engaging, and one will want to know what happens to the characters after this book ends. Even with her earlier books, Harris has always been a wonderful storyteller, and this reviewer is disappointed that she has not written any more gothic novels such as this. The story as a whole is intriguing enough to want to finish the book with an ending that one may not totally feel satisfied with. At the same time, it can be said that justice is served. Sleep, Pale Sister is recommended for readers of Joanne Harris’s novels as well as fans of the old gothic/Victorian-era stories.

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