The Man Who Walked Away: A Novel

by Maud Casey | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 1620403110 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingk00kaburrawing of San Jose, California USA on 1/20/2014
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2 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingk00kaburrawing from San Jose, California USA on Thursday, March 27, 2014
Rec'd via the Amazon.com Vine Program.
PAPERBACK ARC.

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Amazon Editorial Review

In a trance-like state, Albert walks—from Bordeaux to Poitiers, from Chaumont to Macon, and farther afield to Turkey, Austria, Russia—all over Europe. When he walks, he is called a vagrant, a mad man. He is chased out of towns and villages, ridiculed and imprisoned. When the reverie of his walking ends, he’s left wondering where he is, with no memory of how he got there. His past exists only in fleeting images.

Loosely based on the case history of Albert Dadas, a psychiatric patient in the hospital of St. André in Bordeaux in the nineteenth century, The Man Who Walked Away imagines Albert’s wanderings and the anguish that caused him to seek treatment with a doctor who would create a diagnosis for him, a narrative for his pain.

In a time when mental health diagnosis is still as much art as science, Maud Casey takes us back to its tentative beginnings and offers us an intimate relationship between one doctor and his patient as, together, they attempt to reassemble a lost life. Through Albert she gives us a portrait of a man untethered from place and time who, in spite of himself, kept setting out, again and again, in search of wonder and astonishment.

Journal Entry 2 by wingk00kaburrawing at San Jose, California USA on Monday, June 09, 2014
Started reading a couple of days ago.

Gave up this morning after reading the first seven chapters / 87 pages.

Disclaimer: I tried valiantly to finish this book, but failed. If something happens in the final third that makes the novel brilliant, I didn't make it that far.

The Man Who Walked Away is a slow-paced, tedious story that meanders as aimlessly as the man in the title. The reader slides in and out of the consciousness of the wandering Albert, the Doctor, the Director, and other inmates at a mental hospital. Everything feels vague, in a fog - suitable for a book centered on a man whose faulty memory leaves him perpetually discombobulated, I suppose, but not terribly engaging to this reader.

None of the characters is quite developed enough to carry the story. It's a short book at 240 pages, and had more page time been devoted to the Doctor and Albert they could have been interesting. But with so many other patients to gawp at, no one feels fully realized and realistic. Perhaps if the book had been longer, each man or woman could have become more than the manifestations of his or her mental illness. I don't know. But the book in my hands is so lifeless that, as noted at the beginning, I couldn't even finish it.

Journal Entry 3 by wingk00kaburrawing at -- Bookbox, -- By post or by hand/ in person -- USA on Monday, June 16, 2014

Released 4 yrs ago (6/16/2014 UTC) at -- Bookbox, -- By post or by hand/ in person -- USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

adding to my "New Releases" bookbox!

Journal Entry 4 by tabby-cat-owner at Phoenix, Arizona USA on Monday, September 08, 2014
I am taking this out of the New Releases bookbox. Perhaps I should try it right away and if I find that I can't get into it, I can put it in the "Just Not Into It" Bookbox that is also heading my way.

I have always been interesting in books featuring mental illness ever since I first read The Bell Jar.

Journal Entry 5 by tabby-cat-owner at Phoenix, Arizona USA on Monday, September 29, 2014
This book has been donated to the General Literature VBB organized by BookstoGive of Springville, Tennessee.

I am currently reading this book.

Journal Entry 6 by tabby-cat-owner at Phoenix, Arizona USA on Sunday, February 14, 2016
This book has been removed from the General Literature VBB organized by bookstogive.
And, I am still reading this book. It is on the back burner a lot waiting for its turn.

Journal Entry 7 by tabby-cat-owner at Phoenix, Arizona USA on Saturday, February 24, 2018
I did read the book to the end and nothing brilliant happened later in the book either. I was irritated by the writing style of the book. The author writes poetically and tries to make the tragic circumstances of mentally ill people poetic and beautiful. The writing style somehow obscures the storyline. Well, actually, there is no story line. The book is based on real life. The author imagines to great detail what the patients and psychiatric doctor are imaging and thinking.

Released 1 yr ago (2/24/2018 UTC) at Little Free Library on Vallejo Way, south of West 11th St. in Upland, California USA

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

This book was left in the Little Free Library.

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