Engleby’s memories prompt him not only to historical comparison but also to consider the nature of history, which he sees as somehow compromised by modernity “While the past is real enough – the only true reality – the present has insufficient depth to register it” , and of time: The descriptions of Engleby’s life at boarding school was absolutely chilling, and incredibly sad. A gawky figure on the margins of student life, given to Hornbyish musings about King Crimson and Soft Machine, he is practically friendless, apart from a tenuous social life achieved by dealing hash, and an obsession with an unobtainable girl. Indeed, the novel offers multiple pleasures as it negotiates the fluidity of identity, the mystery of identification, the need for closure and the inconsolable want for happiness. I found the prose to be frequently stunning and almost always fluid and smart. And there are occasional flourishes of great, moving empathy when Engleby ruminates on the object of his veneration “Jennifer sat back against the wooden settle in a slightly defensive posture; she wore a floral print skirt.
He begins as Engleby, and to Engleby he eventually returns, but as his confession for that is what it is unfolds, it emerges that he has passed his life since childhood answering to names other than his own, his sense of self blurred and fragmented by an accretion of alternative identities. Mar 03, Jason Pettus rated it did not like it. Exley he is diagnosed with a personality disorder and is sent to a mental institution. Like Faulks’s previous five novels, Engleby is determinedly historical and, like his last Human Traces , it deals with psychiatry. His back story goes some way to explain why he is like he is, but one is still left with the feeling that he was always an accident waiting to happen, which of course it does in the pages of this novel! It was down to the brilliance of one Sebastian Faulks, whose praises I cannot sing highly enough for Engleby. In the end, I still couldn’t decide. There is a belief that the perpetrators of heinous crimes are a component short of full humanity.
And watching a character fall apart and put himself back together again is very difficult to read but you enleby doing it anyway because you get sucked in, through layers of stark prose that are still poetic.
Is the narrator of Sebastian Faulks’ new novel a murderer? Late in the novel, a psychological professional diagnoses him with schizoid personality disorder and some narcissistic tendencies, while maintaining that he does not suffer any biological mental illness like schizophrenia.
Parts of eummary were undeniably hilarious. Mike is questioned by the police about the disappearance of Jennifer and englebj Jennifer to be his girlfriend. Indeed, the novel offers multiple pleasures as it negotiates the fluidity of identity, the mystery of identification, the need for closure and the inconsolable want for happiness. So I had a vague idea of what to expect with this one ish.
One of the most amazing scenes, however, is when a couple of pages toward the end are told from the point of view of Mike’s “best friend,” and we see Mike from the outside. Oct 11, Tony Moore rated it liked it. But what it does show that Faulks is an exemplary writer. The plot here is not good at engldby. Lewis Jones reviews Engleby by Sebastian Sumary.
Even when he’s quoting someone, or quoting from Jennifer’s diary, can we really be sure that it’s the truth?
The change in perspective in wrenching and enlightening. Towards the climax, I felt alienated. Mike Engleby attends an ‘ancient university’ studying English at first, but switches over to natural sciences after he begins to doubt the legitimacy of the subject. Engleby idolizes Jennifer throughout the novel. Probably nearer to 3.
Towards the end I understood why this book is written in such a way. I wonder why Faulks bothered with all that Metropolitan satire in the middle section of the book. But is he bonkers? Relieved of the burden of faux suspense, ideas kept at the fringe by passing ephemera are foregrounded, themes blossom. And, as ever, the attention to detail is absolutely convincing.
A quiet retirement to an undisclosed health facility in the country.
Engleby by Sebastian Faulks
And every truly smart person should be at least a bit of an outsider, don’t you agree? Any feelings of familiarity with his thought processes should immediately be followed up with a visit to a therapist! With only two or three exceptions, the diary is written without any dates until well into it. For all its virtues – and there are many – Engleby feels like two quite different novels, inadequately yoked together by a narrator who proves not nearly unreliable enough.
Who would have thought that an ex-Cambridge graduate could have aroused such emotion in me, and cause me to reflect upon them for a long time afterwards?
It left me unsettled. If only the police knew he had Jennifer’s diary hidden behind the cistern. It was a intriguing, moody read that I found enjoyable despite its dark tone. It took me a while to get into it, and it floundered a little in the middle, but the overall feeling of this book was gripping, dusturbing, chilling and sad.
The product of a poverty-stricken, working-class background—beaten by his father and cruelly tormented by schoolmates—Engleby earns a place for himself at Cambridge during the early s where he lurks on the edges of social intercourse, spending most of his time obsessing over a young woman he first notices in a tea room of the University Library.
It’s always in your mind that Mike has something to do with whatever happened to Jennifer.
The wizard of odd
The crouched ape unbends. In addition to those Thatcher-era celebrities, there’s a ridiculous student film shoot in Ireland Engleby makes the barbecued chicken and an early-’80s dinner party with the nascent economic overclass of commodity traders, “young men who, by making a few stabs in the dark about pig-iron prices, found themselves grossing more than Portugal. The narration is from the perspective of Engleby himself, and he often obscures or misrepresents the events around him.
An NPR summart steered me in the direction of this book. At least I didn’t hate it all the way.
The inside of an outsider’s mind – Telegraph
He is outgoing, enthusiastic, plays rugby and is liked by his year. For some years he still has no friends…. He is infatuated with a girl named Jennifer Arkland, whose name he only discovered on posters advertising her running for a society committee.
He begins as Engleby, and to Engleby he eventually returns, but as his confession for that is what it is unfolds, it emerges that he has passed his life since childhood answering to names other than his own, his sense of self blurred and fragmented by an accretion of alternative identities. Mike fails to attain a first in his final exams. I read Birdsong many years ago, and Eng,eby think that’s the only Faulks novel I’ve ever read–and I frankly don’t remember too much about, including whether or not I liked it, so it’s unlikely I plto have picked this up summqry my own.
I found the prose to be frequently stunning and almost always fluid and smart. I even used italics!! He moves to London and makes a living by drug dealing, eventually becoming a journalist. The excitement went back not long after and towards the ending I felt the weight and de Excellent characterization!
Want to Read saving…. Sharp in its telling, sharp in it’s delivery, sharp in its egnleby. Mike pleads guilty to the murder of Jennifer Arkland. As he grows up, finding a job and even a girlfriend in London, Mike only becomes more and more detached from those around him in an almost anti-coming-of-age. This can make for heavy reading at times, but it’s also quite inthralling looking into the mind eummary a man whose view of reality an Wow.
To think you know a character well and summxry have your perspective flipped is always an exhilarating experience, one of the most fascinating an author can provide. Faulks has a way of writing that leaves the darker side of human nature laid bare on its pages and you are intimately exposed to it.