The Distance Between Us

The Distance Between Us Gripping insightful and deft THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US by Maggie O Farrell is a haunting story of the way our families shape our lives from the award winning author of THIS MUST BE THE PLACE It was a

  • Title: The Distance Between Us
  • Author: Maggie O'Farrell
  • ISBN: 9780755302666
  • Page: 346
  • Format: Paperback
  • Gripping, insightful and deft, THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US by Maggie O Farrell is a haunting story of the way our families shape our lives, from the award winning author of THIS MUST BE THE PLACE It was a Sunday Times Top Ten bestseller and won the Somerset Maugham Award.On a cold February afternoon, Stella catches sight of a man she hasn t seen for many years, but instantlyGripping, insightful and deft, THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US by Maggie O Farrell is a haunting story of the way our families shape our lives, from the award winning author of THIS MUST BE THE PLACE It was a Sunday Times Top Ten bestseller and won the Somerset Maugham Award.On a cold February afternoon, Stella catches sight of a man she hasn t seen for many years, but instantly recognises Or thinks she does At the same moment on the other side of the globe, in the middle of a crowd of Chinese New Year revellers, Jake realises that things are becoming dangerous.They know nothing of one another s existence, but both Stella and Jake flee their lives Jake in search of a place so remote it doesn t appear on any map, and Stella for a destination in Scotland, the significance of which only her sister, Nina, will understand.

    One thought on “The Distance Between Us”

    1. Oh my goodness! I never expected this. I never expected to fall in love with a book that I randomly plucked from a box at a garage sale. Maggie O'Farrell has enchanted and captivated me. Her writing is lyrical and honest, warm and homely. She describes things in a way I can relate to. 'He doesn't like the word 'homesick', doesn't feel it does justice to what it's supposed to describe. He prefers the long, pulling, mournful vowels of the German word 'heimweh'. For him, it's not just a mild case o [...]

    2. This is the third book by Maggie O'Farrell I have read. I find her writing absolutely captivating. Despite the fact that this story had a much more satisfying ending (i.e less dark), I don't think it will leave a very lasting impression me. I sobbed when I read After You'd Gone, and I was positively disturbed after reading The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox. These are both much stronger emotions that just feeling warm and satisfied. Yet as much as I try to categorize which of these three I like be [...]

    3. It looks like I'm at a one all draw with Maggie O'Farrell. I enjoyed The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox after a slow start, but didn't get on at all well with My Lover's Lover. So it's taken me a while to pick up a third of her books. This book is written in what I always think of as "jigsaw piece" style. Passages from the lives of the characters appear in what seems to be no particular order, time goes back and forth, places change, minor characters appear and it sometimes takes a while to figure [...]

    4. Summary: Stella runs away from her life in London to work at a Scottish hotel. Jake survives a crowd crush in Hong Kong, finds himself in the wrong life in England, and goes in search of his father in Scotland. Stella’s sister Nina has never coped well without Stella, and Stella’s Italian-Scottish family isn’t thrilled about her new life choices either…I loved this. The bond between the sisters was so strong and real, and O’Farrell seems to have the knack of coming up with seemingly in [...]

    5. When I find an author I love, I try to read as many other titles by them as possible and typically, there is a point where the author has gone from amateur to professional. I have really enjoyed Maggie O'Farrell, and while I enjoyed this story, I feel that she was still an amateur when she wrote The Distance Between Us. It lacked the refinement and tightness of more recent titles. I don't mind a story that jumps around. In fact, I quite like the varying perspectives; the lack of chornological ti [...]

    6. Meh. A love story or a story of two sisters - I was never quite sure. Perhaps the problem with this book was that it tried to be both and became clogged and cloying from the effort. Stella runs away constantly and inexplicably (even given the 'terrible secret' that has 'haunted her since childhood') and Nina is one of the most confusing and annoying characters I have encountered in fiction. Actually, scrap that, they are both annoying. Despite Stella's complete lack of personality (and vocabular [...]

    7. missmargotdominique.pThis story is like a puzzle. In the book are stories told that explains the past of Stella and Nina and make us understand the personality and the complicity of both sisters.Nina, Stella and Jake are three people fleeing their present and their past.A novel full of meetings and misunderstandings, fears, guilt, trails, love and make peace with the past.

    8. Another satisfying O'Farrell. Sometimes "guessable" but always readable. UPDATE: I read it a long time ago, and I may have to try it again - I just remember I liked it! :)

    9. This is a beautifully written piece: real, tragic, melancholy, eventful, lovely. The most wonderfully exciting and poignant story I have read in a long time. The pace Maggie sets means there is never a dull moment. The characters really come to life, provoking emotions and are likeable, which is so important to me as a reader. I loved Stella and Jake, and appreciated the way Maggie allowed me to see into both their families and the dynamics and history within them. The author has definitely mast [...]

    10. I did enjoy the story of these two young people who have had more than their fair share of trajedy and family complicatons in their lives thus far. One could say that curcumstances are forced upon them, time and time again.There were times when I became so frustrated, wanting to shout at the book, "For goodness sake, tell him (or her)," or "Don't do that!" Simple words or actions at the appropriate time would have save a whole mess of complications. I am sure that you have read similar books, or [...]

    11. I read and really enjoyed 'After You'd Gone' and 'The Vanishing Acts of Esme Lennox' but was really disappointed by 'My Lover's Lover', so had left this sitting on my shelf for ages before deciding to give it a go.I'm so pleased that I did, as I think this is my favourite of O'Farrell's novels. The human relationships in this story are so intelligently written, her characters are wonderfully crafted and the story is both intense and very emotional.The story of Jake and Stella goes back and forth [...]

    12. I am a fan of Maggie O'Farrell. I find her writing interesting, and thought provoking. She writes beautifully, but not in obvious way. Nonetheless, I was slow to get into this one. I found myself impatient with the multiple points of view and the frequent flashbacks. It took me a long time to find my footing in the story and as a result it took me a while to care about the characters. But much like a game of pass the parcel, it is worth it to stay in it till the end for the reward. The reveal of [...]

    13. Maybe if I didn't read "After you'd gone" first, I gave this one 5 stars, but really deserves 3,5!This is a love story, but at the same time it is a story about family ties, full of strange and complex relationships, full of pain and disappointments and escapes The language is beautiful, the plot is interesting and I really enjoyed the twists between present and past(but I've already liked it even more that kind of fragmented structure in "After you'd gone"!). The beginning was promising, but I [...]

    14. Given this 4* (would prefer 3.5) as it is certainly a good read and very well written. It does jump around a lot though which is part of what makes it so different and part of what makes it slightly annoying & hard to follow. I think the plot would be too predictable in the hands of a lesser author but an air of mystery is created from the word go and never really leaves. I found the ending a bit of an anti climax however and not sure I'm in a rush to seek out her more recent novels. Then ag [...]

    15. Excellent read, exquisite writing. Not a "five-star" because a little too choppy at the beginning for my tastes (switching between too many story lines) although stories and characters are clear. As editor I also would have suggested the author move one major plot point, and broaden the love story beyond "love at first sight". An underrated author!

    16. Comecei a ler este livro na minha viagem a Itália, e por algumas condicionantes, acabou por ficar semi esquecido pois tive pouca oportunidade para o ler.Por essa razão, perdi-me na história, pois esta faz referência a vários momentos ao mesmo tempo, perdi a noção das personagens e do seu enredo, de tal forma, que foi complicado voltar a tomar-lhe o rumo.Contudo, assim que regressei, peguei no livro novamente, decidida a entender a história uma vez que a mesma é categorizada como "O melh [...]

    17. This is the third novel I have read by Maggie O’Farrell and I find her novels easy reading but nothing spectacular. I enjoyed this more than ‘My Lover’s Lover’ and about the same as ‘After You’d Gone.’ ‘The Distance Between Us’ is a love story full of complex relationships and lots of pain.At the start of the novel the protagonists Stella Gilmore and Jake Kildoune do not even know of the existence of the other. Of course it is obvious to the reader that they will meet eventuall [...]

    18. I guess you could say I'm a Maggie O'Farrell fan but this book didn't have quite the same intensity as her other books I read. I was really enjoying the beginning - I like the way she zig zags between characters and time-frames. The sections can be quite small but they convey very poignant and intense scenes, with a great use of language and detail. However, I found that as the book progressed and more and more characters were introduced, it became a bit too much. Too many stories and worlds and [...]

    19. I didn't love it. I'm sad to say that, while O'Farrell's other novels were gripping and fast-paced, this one was overly-complicated and confusing. The story jumps from character to character, as is O'Farrell's usual style, but the cast of characters is so numerous that it becomes garbled & the plot is lost for a while. There are also no chapters or any other marker to notify the reader when a change of perspective has been made which exacerbates the confusion. There also seems to be several [...]

    20. Another good read from this author. She really is one of my favourites. Having read all of her later books you can tell that this is written earlier in her career. As usual she has that unique ability to do multiple narratives and multiple time frames all on the one page - and it works. It staggers me that she can always pull that off so convincingly. This story consists of two Scottish-Italian sisters and a British guy born and living in Hong Kong, plus an ensemble of familial characters. The s [...]

    21. There is no doubt in my mind that Maggie O'Farrel is one of the best (if not the best) writer of the english language alive today. Maggie's second novel "The Distance Between Us" is just one more proof of her genius. Written as a series of very short episodes (sometimes without any clear timeline) of the lives of two second generation immigrants (an italian immigrant in Scotland and a British immigrant in Hong Kong), the book is a testament of the little distance that binds as all and of how, wi [...]

    22. I wasn't sure that I was enjoying this book but I kept with it. Initially I thought it was just going to be about two different people with no connection, but however it eventually came together. Stella and Jake not knowing of each others existence, one in London and the other in Hong Kong. Each have their own trauma and reasons for coming to Scotland and eventually their paths cross and so starts a turmoil of characters, will they won't they get together.I did find it hard to keep up with the n [...]

    23. Stella lived in London, Jake in Hong Kong. Maggie O'Farrell wrote their stories, including their family with several generations, scrambled them up in time, and put them back together. This is not a book you can read in small bites. The writing changes time, generation and family at such a quick pace, sometimes a page at a time, that following where you are and who is who, can be very challenging for the first half of the book. Once I got all that down, it was ok, but a bit annoying at how quick [...]

    24. Maggie O'Farrell's third novel was the only one from her oeuvre which I had not read. It starts off in rather an intriguing manner, and I very much liked the idea of the parallel stories, which gave the novel a simple but effective structure. O'Farrell has so many strengths; her writing, her characterisation, the depth at play in her books, and the way in which she tells stories within stories. The Distance Between Us flits marvellously back in forth in time, and is cleverly plotted. A must-read [...]

    25. Exceptional writer, am in awe of O'Farrell's sentence construction. This perhaps more than the story - sweet Jake, brought up in Hong Kong, does the kind thing to his cost. In parallel, a young woman confronts her past. The story jumps from character to character, and from the parents / grandparents past to present , so kept me guessing as to how they would meet, and to discover the story behind the female siblings' social awkwardness.

    26. Nice enough story line and well written but nothing too special. Easy reading, but would have benefitted from not jumping backward and forward in time quite so frequently.

    27. A little less sure about this novel although it is pleasing that the disfunctional protagonists end up together. One can only hope they won't breed.

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