The Gathering

  • Title: The Gathering
  • Author: Anne Enright
  • ISBN: 9780099563150
  • Page: 199
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Gathering The nine surviving children of the Hegarty clan gather in Dublin for the wake of their wayward brother Liam It wasn t the drink that killed him although that certainly helped it was what happened to h
    The nine surviving children of the Hegarty clan gather in Dublin for the wake of their wayward brother Liam It wasn t the drink that killed him although that certainly helped it was what happened to him as a boy in his grandmother s house, in the winter of 1968 The Gathering is a novel about love and disappointment, about thwarted lust and limitless desire, and how oThe nine surviving children of the Hegarty clan gather in Dublin for the wake of their wayward brother Liam It wasn t the drink that killed him although that certainly helped it was what happened to him as a boy in his grandmother s house, in the winter of 1968 The Gathering is a novel about love and disappointment, about thwarted lust and limitless desire, and how our fate is written in the body, not in the stars.

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      199 Anne Enright
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      Posted by:Anne Enright
      Published :2019-04-05T23:41:03+00:00

    About Anne Enright


    1. Anne Enright was born in Dublin, where she now lives and works She has published three volumes of stories, one book of nonfiction, and five novels In 2015, she was named the inaugural Laureate for Irish Fiction Her novel The Gathering won the Man Booker Prize, and her last 2011 novel, The Forgotten Waltz, won the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction He most recent novel The Green Road 2015 was nominated for The 2016 Baileys Women s Prize for Fiction, longlisted for the 2015 Man Booker Prize, and shortlisted for the 2017 International Dublin Literary Award.


    650 Comments


    1. this book was very frustrating. i feel like i should love it, but it's like there is a barrier - a chastity belt between us preventing our love, and as much as i want it, it isn't going to happen for us. there is a quality to her writing that reminded me of what i loved or housekeeping, books i am also told i am supposed to love, but just can't feel anything for, like distant relations. she is a less antiseptic writer than hustvedt, though. i respect her prose - there are lines in here of amazin [...]

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    2. These words are imbued with a despair so raw that not even once during the time I was reading this did I feel an ounce of regret envisaging the time the novel drew to its inevitable conclusion. In fact I was eager for it to be over, for the narrator to stop pouring forth her endless stream of inchoate conjectures and unsavoury insinuations. Prior to this, I have slogged my way through Vollmann's 800-page behemoth (The Royal Family) which, despite its uncompromising sincerity and profound sympath [...]

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    3. Please excuse me as I make a noise of annoyance, disgust, boredom and all around dissatisfaction UGHARGHHHHUHHH. Don't even know how to spell that or if it makes any sense. Hey, that makes a nice segue into my review.Let me start with the one perk I can honestly give this book. Anne Enright has a beautiful grasp of words but she doesn't know how to use them. She also had a wonderful gem of an idea for a story, but she didn't know how to develop it. Combine those two together you get a reader thi [...]

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    4. This book actually angered me, and I think this paragraph sums up why:"I know, as I write these that they require me to deal in facts. It is time to call an end to romance and just say what happened in Ada's house, the year that I was eight and Liam was barely nine."That passage occurs about halfway through the book. The preceding pages are an endless series of shapeless ponderings on what may or may not have happened. The narrator leaps from one era to the next, with the basic point being "Some [...]

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    5. (My full review of this book is larger than ' word-count limit. Find the entire essay at the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography [cclapcenter]. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted here illegally.)As a book critic, I of course try to steer clear of any information I can about a book I'm about to review, until I'm done with the book myself and have already made up my mind about what I thought; so imagine my surprise, then, when [...]

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    6. "Because a mother's love is God's greatest joke." This sentence would make perfect sense to me if we turned it around:"Because a God's love is mother's greatest joke."Religion, like family wounds and family love, is something one doesn't shake off easily, and that keeps haunting grown-up people long after they think they have left their origins behind. Even what you forget shapes what you are. And that is all I remember of this novel, which may have left more impact on me than I am aware of. But [...]

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    7. When I see that some people have given this book five stars, I start to question my own sanity. For me, the book had wonderful potential when I took it off the shelf and the Booker Award sticker only reinforced my impression that this would be a great read: WRONG. Wonderful words strung together does not a good story make. The narrator is completely two-dimensional as written and I was unable to connect with her or her perspective in any way. Yes, I understand the woman's "beloved" brother fell [...]

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    8. An intelligent, insightful and thought provoking novel about an Irish family experiencing the loss of a brother and son.Anne Enright’s 2007 novel that garnered the Man Booker Prize for that year is an enjoyable but sometimes difficult journey in the life of Veronica who has recently lost her brother. Told from the days immediately following his tragic death as well as remembrances from their life together, Enright tells Liam’s story from the perspective of Veronica, his younger sister by abo [...]

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    9. This novel is definitely not for everyone—probably why it has such a low rating here. But I thoroughly enjoyed it. Enright examines grief, guilt, and family trauma so universally in this story, though she uses the lens of one woman, Veronica, to do so. The writing is taut but immersive, and the story unfolds slowly and builds itself back up by the end to delivering a satisfying conclusion that will keep you thinking. I found it to be a dark but not unforgiving story. And though she tackles som [...]

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    10. CELEBRITY DEATH MATCH Thank you ladies and gentlemen. Tonight's contest from the palatial surroundings of Monkstown Boxing Club here in Dun Laoghaire is to decide who is to represent the Republic of Ireland in the 2012 London Olympics Most Miserable Contemporary Novelist event. (Scattered applause from the twenty or so people in the audience)In the blue corner, we have Anne Enright (Anne gets up tiredly from her chair in the corner and raises her hands on which giant gloves have been tied - she [...]

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    11. Another Booker Prize winner that is so besotted with its ambiguity and ephemeral nature that it is entirely forgettable and endlessly frustrating. Please, no more showing off how one can see without seeing, live without living, or know without knowing. Tell a story! Don't give me a magic show.

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    12. This is the best novel about grief and bereavement that I have read.Enright captures the peculiar relationship of close siblings perfectly. It is not about love - you don't "love" a close sibling just as you don't "love" your arm. They are a part of you. When they die, you are broken. It is a hard, bitter, angry book because the grief you feel when a close sibling dies is a hard, bitter anger. An anger that is as close to madness as makes no difference. Grief colours everything, and makes everyt [...]

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    13. “I do not think we remember our family in any real sense. We live in them instead” ― Anne Enright, The GatheringI grabbed a couple of my still unread, Irish writers to read while traveling back and forth, to and fro from Ireland for pleasure. Ha. Pleasure. The Irish know how to fuck, fight and die. Oh, and write. Both novels centered around drownings, death, and memory. Both were Man Booker Prize winners (born two years apart). Both were very different looks back. Banville's The Sea was mo [...]

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    14. I bought this book because I once again fell for Borders' Buy-1-Get-1-50%-Off deal. I needed a 2nd book, and this one won the Man Booker Prize in 2007. Hell, I thought, it can't be that bad.Well, it wasn't terrible, but once again, I was deathly bored. More and more, I find myself very annoyed at authors who use the carrot-on-a-stick opening shtick (e.g. "OMG, you guys! Something HORRIBLE happened at my grandmother's house in 1968!! Now you've got to read this to find out what it was!!!! LOL!!!" [...]

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    15. Anne Enright’s The Gathering deserves every ounce of praise it has received, and perhaps a bit more. It’s a family history of the Hegartys, told by Veronica after the death of her brother, Liam. So, and therefore, it is a wake, a stream of consciousness response to bereavement. There are more than shades of Molly Bloom here, as Veronica recounts intimate details of her own and her relatives’ ultimately inconsequential lives. And despite its obvious – and necessary – preoccupation with [...]

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    16. This was the only book on the Booker short list that I did not want to read. When it won, I was disappointed because I thought it looked too much like Banville's The Sea, and I did not enjoy my time with that book. However, I thought I needed to give The Gathering a shot. No, I was not pleasantly surprised. Enright's The Gathering may have a some inciteful, well written sentences, and it may be well structured both in sequence and theme, but for what purpose? I did not feel that the structure wa [...]

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    17. This is original writing. I particularly admired the way Enright circled her subject, teasing out the material until the moment was right for revelation; it takes a fierce discipline to do that well. I also liked the way she handled the first person narrative. Veronica's voice rings so true. Enright has the knack of going beyond the reader's willing suspension of disbelief. Suspension of disbelief doesn't even come into it. All human life is in her fiction. In fact, it's not fiction at all

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    18. The Gathering bears witness to a modern Ireland—which at the time of its publication in 2007 was the shiny, bright, roaring Celtic Tiger, an economic miracle—that cannot escape its past. It is told in a looping, troubling first-person by Veronica Hegarty, who lives an aimless existence in a detached five-bedroom home in the Dublin suburbs with her two lovely daughters and financier husband Tom. Veronica and Tom, who “moves money around, electronically. Every time he does this, a tiny bit s [...]

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    19. Take Two:I'm afraid a re-read is not going to persuade me to add a star, I still can't 'like' this, sorry.The brick wall smash arrived at exactly the same point as the first time round: page 131. Veronica muses on faith and saints, mentioning that her brother Liam liked "three Roman saints with funny names who were turned upside down and had milk and mustard put up their noses, which killed them, apparently. It didn't seem to bother Kitty, as I recall." Kitty, as one might imagine, is the little [...]

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    20. Another one for the growing life-is-just-too-short pile. This book was draggy and depressing, and I didn't get a whole lot out of it. What were those Booker judges thinking?First of all, while I would be the last person to minimize molestation, its prevalence, and its traumatic effects, it has really become a literary cliche: young child of a dysfunctional family living in a less enlightened place and/or time is molested, no one ever finds out/addresses it properly, young child is psychologicall [...]

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    21. This is a book which needs to be read and appreciated, not for the story but for the finely crafted, lyrical text. The story itself seemed to be a moderately predictable and stereotypical tale and I think I almost guessed the deep rooted reason for the suicide before the idea of looking for a possible cause had even hit the ground and started running. An impressively large Irish family gathers to mourn the passing of one of their siblings and history, as it is want to do at these kind of events, [...]

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    22. An Irish woman's brother dies. She is obsessed with sex (or, more accurately, with penises) and mumbles to herself about something (maybe death, maybe sex, maybe family -- it's awfully hard to say) for 250 pages. While my summary of this self-indulgent mess of a book is obviously meant to be facetious, it's not far off. Enright's narrator really doesn't have anything to say, nor does Enright give us any reason that we should want to hear her say it. We're supposed to be interested in the narrato [...]

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    23. Amazing It Could Win Any Award, Let Alone the Man Booker Prize. This was another selection from my book club. We affectionately refer to it as the 'bad book club' because we have chosen some really bad, awful, horrid, ghastly books and this one is right up there with the worst of the worst as far as I'm concerned. I guess you either get Anne Enright or you don't and I don't. If this had been some sort of cathartic memoir like Joan Didion's 'Year of Magical Thinking' I could have given the author [...]

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    24. I remember walking through the Guggenheim Museum and stopping at an exhibit called "White Canvas" or something like that. For all I know, somebody bought a blank canvas, realized they had no talent with painting but a knack for knowing what passes for cool and sold the idea to the powers that be of art. Or, perhaps it is actually art. I have no degree or expertise in that area, but a white canvas doesn't look like art to me.Likewise, someone, Anne Engright in this case, writes a confusing and mu [...]

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    25. In terms of writing, characterization, and the exploration of memory - this is among the best books I have read, period.I am not a grieving middle-aged woman with a large family who has lost her brother to suicide. But the strong and accurate portrayal of alienation, loss, and grief - and the way people deal with these things in ways that are erratic, self-destructive, confusing, and unpredictable and illogical even to themselves - had me finding myself identifying with the narrator much more fr [...]

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    26. It's been said that Sigmund Freud said of the Irish "This is one race of people for whom psychoanalysis is of no use whatsoever."After reading the Gathering you can begin to understand why. The Irish seem to be haunted not only by guilt and shame, but by the ghosts of their dead relatives as well. Here's a particularly telling passage from the novel :" I know I sound bitter, and Christ I wish I wasn't such a hard bitch sometimes, but my brother blamed me for twenty years or more. He blamed me fo [...]

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    27. Mag sein, dass hier mal wieder irische Klischees aufeinanderprallen: Die kinderreiche Familie, Alkoholismus, sexueller Mißbrauch. Auch der Titel führt ein wenig in die Irre: Nachdem Liam Selbstmord beging, ist es vor allem seine Schwester Veronica, deren Gedanken und Erinnerungen wir folgen. Die Begegnung aller Geschwister (ursprünglich zwölf, aber zwei sind bereits verstorben) nimmt einen nur kleinen Teil des Romans ein. Dennoch habe ich das Buch sehr gerne gelesen. Es ist sehr traurig, seh [...]

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    28. التجمع آن إنرايتجوائز المان بوكر غالبًا ما تكون علامة مضمونة على الجودة، بل والعظمة أحيانًا، تجاربي الشخصية مع تلك الروايات في غاية المتعة، والملاحظ هو ربطها بين أزمان مختلفة، في إطار محكم.الرواية هي الحائزة على جائزة البوكر لعام 2007 كاتبة آيرلندية صاغت لنا رواية ايرلندية [...]

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    29. The glaring rays of the sun are such a delight today; it’s a warm afternoon. It’s been raining unceasingly for the last two days and I can see the coconut tree in my backyard in its shadow, in its reflection in the small puddle that hasn't dried up yet and in itself of course A small beautiful yellow butterfly with a dab of black flits playfully among the branches; now she is here, now she is not.I follow her aimless path and I wonder what makes this beautiful being so restless, is there a p [...]

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    30. Despite all the critical acclaim this book received, I'd heard nothing but negative things from actual readers before beginning it, so I was naturally a bit apprehensive and unsure of what to expect. The story hinges around the suicide of Liam Hegarty, and is narrated by his sister Veronica; now a mother of two young daughters living a comfortable middle-class life, she is haunted by memories of her impoverished childhood in Ireland, and the narrative flips back and forth between the 'gathering' [...]

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