Written on the Body

by Jeanette Winterson | Literature & Fiction | This book has not been rated.
ISBN: 0099193914 Global Overview for this book
Registered by peggysmum of Kambah, Australian Capital Territory Australia on 10/21/2005
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2 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by peggysmum from Kambah, Australian Capital Territory Australia on Friday, October 21, 2005
Amazon.co.uk Review
Written on The Body is a tender dissection of erotic love. The prose is like a poem, lush with wit and imagery, but behind the luxuriant relish of the words, there is a scalpel-sharp cut of emotions. Love and longing are the wounds through which Winterson's imagery flows. The novel begins with regret: "Why is the measure of love loss? It hasn't rained in three months ... The grapes have withered on the vine." The narrator is also suffering from a heart-stricken drought. She is grieving for the loss of her true love, Louise.

Louise has flowing Pre-Raphaelite hair, and a body besieged by leukaemia, her cells waging war: "here they come, hurtling through the bloodstream trying to pick a fight." But Louise is not dead, merely abandoned by the narrator with the best of intentions. As the lament continues, striking in its beauty and dazzling inventiveness, more of the love story is revealed. The narrator has been a female Lothario, falling in love, and out again, swaggering like Mercutio. But then she meets Louise, married to Elgin--"very eminent, very dull, very rich"--and is hopelessly, helplessly smitten: "I didn't only want Louise's flesh, I wanted her bones, her blood, her tissues, the sinews that bound her together." Elgin persuades her to leave for the good of Louise's health, and all is undone.

Winterson does not shy away from grief, or joy. She has acutely described how love can transform a life, but also destroy it too. But, for Winterson, where there is love there is hope: "I stretch out my hand and reach the corners of the world ... I don't know if this is a happy ending but here we are let loose in open fields." Eithne Farry

Journal Entry 2 by peggysmum at Australia in Rural BB, Bookbag -- Controlled Releases on Thursday, March 16, 2006

Released 13 yrs ago (3/16/2006 UTC) at Australia in Rural BB, Bookbag -- Controlled Releases

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Journal Entry 3 by luckaye from Crestmead, Queensland Australia on Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Taken from Rural BB

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