Unless

by Carol Shields | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: Global Overview for this book
Registered by winghetku77wing of Nokia, Pirkanmaa / Birkaland Finland on 4/29/2008
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This book is in the wild! This Book is Currently in the Wild!
16 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by winghetku77wing from Nokia, Pirkanmaa / Birkaland Finland on Tuesday, April 29, 2008
From the backcover:
"Reta Winters, 44 years of age, has started a new sort of life. She has discovered the meaning of loss for the first time.

For all her days, Reta has enjoyed the useful monotony of happiness: a loving family, good friends, growing success as a writer of light fiction, novels 'for summertime'. This placid existance cracks open one fearful day when her beloved eldest daughter, Norah, drops out to sit on a gritty street corner, silent but for the sign around her neck that reads 'GOODNESS'. Reta's search for what drove her daughter to such a desparate statement turns into an unflinching and surprisingly funny meditation on where we find meaning and hope.

Warmth, passion and wisdom come together in Shields' remarkably supple prose. Unless, a harrowing but ultimately consoling story of one family's anguish and healing, proves her mastery of extraordinary fictions about ordinary life."

This is one of the 4 books that I picked up from OBCZ in Natural History Museum during my holiday in London.

Journal Entry 2 by winghetku77wing from Nokia, Pirkanmaa / Birkaland Finland on Monday, June 09, 2008
I recently got a Finnish translation of the book - No. 27 on the 1001 books you must read before you die list. As this book is in many wishlists, so I decided to make a bookray of it.

The preferred length to keep the book is one month, but I know people have lives outside of bookcrossing, so I’m not too fussy about it. Otherwise the regular rules apply: make a journal entry when you receive the book, when you've read it to let the others know what you thought about the book and when you send the book to the next participant of the ray.

The final order of the participants:

1. lauraloo29, Canada (Not in Canada)
2. cheli-garza, USA (USA)
3. Supertalya, Korea/USA (anywhere)
4. Wandering-B, Hong Kong (anywhere)
5. Bjorg, Iceland (Europe)
6. jellyfish67, UK (anywhere)
7. stubee, UK (anywhere)
8. KT-J, UK (anywhere)

The bookray is now finished - thanks for all participants!

Journal Entry 3 by winghetku77wing from Nokia, Pirkanmaa / Birkaland Finland on Thursday, June 12, 2008
The book started its journey to the first participant this morning. Enjoy the ray!

Journal Entry 4 by lauraloo29 from Edmonton, Alberta Canada on Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Arrived safe and sound today. I have another ring before it, but I will keep it moving. Thank you.

July 5 - Hopefully starting this book today.

Journal Entry 5 by lauraloo29 from Edmonton, Alberta Canada on Sunday, July 06, 2008
I just cannot get into this book. I'm not going to struggle anymore. It will be on its way by July 14th. Thank you for sharing!

Journal Entry 6 by cheli-garza from Dallas, Texas USA on Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Did I not journal this when it arrived?? My apologies! I got this book maybe two weeks ago. I was kind of excited, yet kind of dismayed since I've been so busy with school that it's hard to find a moment to sit and read just for the pleasure of it. However, I put this by my bed and promised myself to make time to enjoy it.

Too bad that I can't get into it. I just don't like it that much. Ms. Shields's writing is beautiful. It's rich and enjoyable. But the characters and the story don't interest me that much. I didn't even skip ahead to find out what happens to everyone!! So, this is going on to SuperTalya in Japan. Enjoy!

Journal Entry 7 by Supertalya on Thursday, September 11, 2008
Just received this in the post. Thanks! I have a couple of rings in front of it, but I am a fast reader and should get to it soon.

Update: It was really hard to get into. I had to force myself to keep reading, but once I was 3/4ths into the book, I felt I needed to find out what happened.

Journal Entry 8 by Supertalya at Controlled Release, A Bookcrossing member -- Controlled Releases on Thursday, October 02, 2008

Released 11 yrs ago (10/6/2008 UTC) at Controlled Release, A Bookcrossing member -- Controlled Releases

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On it's way to Hong Kong.

Journal Entry 9 by wandering-B from Tai Po, New Territories Hong Kong on Monday, November 10, 2008
Received today. Thanks hetku77 for sending to to all of us and supertalya for sending it to me. This may take a little while - I have two rings in front of it (yikes!)

Journal Entry 10 by wandering-B from Tai Po, New Territories Hong Kong on Sunday, December 07, 2008
This was an interesting, but not riveting read. The sentences were, of course, extremely well-thought out and crafted. But did some of it make sense to me, the average reader? Not really. Try this one - the tie to the title: "The conjugation and (somtimes) adverb unless, with its elegiac undertones, is a term used in logic, a word breathed by the hopeful or by writers of fiction wanting to prise open the crusted world and reveal another plane of being, which is similar in its geographical particulars and peopled by those who resemble ourselves." OK, yeah. I must be thinking on another plane of being.

Anyway, off it goes to Bjorg.


Journal Entry 11 by Bjorg from Reykjavík, Reykjavík (Höfuðborgar svæðið) Iceland on Monday, December 22, 2008
The book arrived today, thanks so much Wandering-B:) I should be able to start on it really soon, am at home with a broken ankle and can´t do much else but to read!!

Journal Entry 12 by Bjorg from Reykjavík, Reykjavík (Höfuðborgar svæðið) Iceland on Wednesday, December 31, 2008
I really can´t get into this book at all, I´ve been trying and trying but most of the time I´ve no idea what I´m reading. So I´m sorry to say but I give up:( will send it to the next person as soon as I´ve got the address!!
Happy new year everyone:)

Journal Entry 13 by Bjorg from Reykjavík, Reykjavík (Höfuðborgar svæðið) Iceland on Friday, January 02, 2009
Will mail the book to Jellyfish67 today:)

Journal Entry 14 by Bjorg at Burnley, Lancashire United Kingdom on Friday, January 02, 2009

Released 11 yrs ago (1/2/2009 UTC) at Burnley, Lancashire United Kingdom

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Sending this book to Jellyfish67, it´s a bookring

Journal Entry 15 by jellyfish67 from Burnley, Lancashire United Kingdom on Sunday, January 11, 2009
Arrived safely yesterday.

Journal Entry 16 by jellyfish67 at By Mail, A Bookcrossing member -- Controlled Releases on Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Released 11 yrs ago (6/24/2009 UTC) at By Mail, A Bookcrossing member -- Controlled Releases

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Apologies for the delay. Enjoy.

Journal Entry 17 by stubee from Bury, Lancashire United Kingdom on Saturday, June 27, 2009
Thanks Jellyfish67 for sending this on and to Hetku77 for sharing this book. I've heard good things about Carol Shields so I look forward to reading this; I've a couple of books to read before this one but will get onto to it shortly.

EDIT: 17th July - I must say I didn't really like this novel; I didn't care for Reta Winters much although I was interested in why Norah ran away. I've given this to KT-J to read now.

Next: Nikolai Gogol – The Collected Tales of Nikolai Gogol

Journal Entry 18 by KT-J from Bury, Lancashire United Kingdom on Saturday, July 18, 2009
I read this on holiday and I actually quite enjoyed it. I thought it was an interesting story and well expressed through Reta's eyes. It didn't move along as quickly as I would have expected in some places but I still thought it was a well thought out book.

Thanks hetku77 for sharing this.

Journal Entry 19 by stubee at Lancaster, Lancashire United Kingdom on Monday, July 20, 2009

Released 11 yrs ago (7/21/2009 UTC) at Lancaster, Lancashire United Kingdom

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Off to Shovelmonkey1 as a RABCK.... enjoy!

Journal Entry 20 by shovelmonkey1 from Crystal Palace, Greater London United Kingdom on Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Brilliant surprise from Stubee. Thanks very much. I also have the Stone Fields to read as well so i might try and read them both and do a joint release later on. Thanks for thinking of me.

Journal Entry 21 by shovelmonkey1 from Crystal Palace, Greater London United Kingdom on Thursday, August 06, 2009
This book is not the kind of book i'm interested in. I suspect on the whole that it's something my mum would like and probably has more appeal if you have teenage children and so can empathise with the character Reta Winters. I just didn't really care about Reta, her novel, her husband, her nice house or her wayward daughter. This book would have been more interesting if it focused on Norah and her pursuit of "goodness". Am releasing this one as a book ray very soon.

Journal Entry 22 by shovelmonkey1 from Crystal Palace, Greater London United Kingdom on Monday, August 10, 2009
Ok, so thank you to Stubee for sending this book to me -it was much appreciated as it's another one ticked off the 1001 books list. Cheers! It's been read and now it's time for it to move on again. I'm releasing this as a bookray...

The reading order so far is:
1.Kingfan30 UK (UK shipping)
2.Fluffy-owl UK (UK shipping)
3.Cinderess UK <--------ASKED TO BE SKIPPED AS ALREADY ACCQUIRED ANOTHER COPY
4.Shovelmonkey1 UK (EU/Intl shipping)SKIPPED AS FLUFFY-OWL WAS KIND ENOUGH TO SHIP TO THE EU - THANKS!
5.Deepswamp Europe (Int'l shipping)
6.Irenic Canada (US shipping)<---- ASKED TO BE SKIPPED
7.Skizeye9 US (US Shipping)
8.tabby90 US (US shipping)<------------THIS BOOK IS HERE!
9.fairy-whispers Australia

THIS BOOKRAY STOPS HERE AS NOONE NEW JOINED WHO WAS WILLING TO SHIP TO AUSTRALIA. THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO PARTICIPATED IN THIS BOOKRAY.

The book will bounce back to me in the middle because of everyones shipping preferences but thats ok as long as it keeps moving. Still need someone in the US to ship to Australia though so if you know anyone in the states who would like to join and who is willing to ship to Oz then please get them to PM me...

Released 11 yrs ago (8/12/2009 UTC) at — Controlled Release, -- By post or by hand/ in person -- United Kingdom

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This book is setting out on a new book ray. Heading to Kingfan30 today.

Journal Entry 24 by kingfan30 from -- Somewhere in Lincs, Lincolnshire United Kingdom on Sunday, August 16, 2009
Has arrived safe and sound. I have a ray to read first so will get to it as soon as I can. Thanks for including me.

4 Sept 09 - In two minds about this book. I enjoyed the writing style of the book and the story line was interesting, but on the other hand I found it quite rambling at times. Pleased to have read it though.

Journal Entry 25 by kingfan30 at Durham, County Durham United Kingdom on Friday, September 04, 2009

Released 11 yrs ago (9/4/2009 UTC) at Durham, County Durham United Kingdom

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On its way to Fluffy-owl

Journal Entry 26 by Fluffy-Owl from Chichester, West Sussex United Kingdom on Monday, September 07, 2009
Received today in the post, thank you!

Journal Entry 27 by Fluffy-Owl from Chichester, West Sussex United Kingdom on Thursday, September 17, 2009
I really enjoyed this. A quick read, liked plot and characters. Pleasantly surprised, having read above JEs. Will post off soon.

Journal Entry 28 by Fluffy-Owl at Cambridge, Cambridgeshire United Kingdom on Friday, September 18, 2009

Released 11 yrs ago (9/18/2009 UTC) at Cambridge, Cambridgeshire United Kingdom

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Posted off to Sweden today, hope it travels well and arrives safely.

Journal Entry 29 by Deepswamp from Oskarshamn, Småland Sweden on Sunday, September 27, 2009
Arrived safe!
Looking forward to read!

Journal Entry 30 by Deepswamp from Oskarshamn, Småland Sweden on Monday, October 12, 2009
Thank you! One of the best read this year! I´s happy I´ve got the chans to live with Reta and her family for some days!

Journal Entry 31 by skizeye9 from Washington, District of Columbia USA on Wednesday, November 04, 2009
Looking forward to reading--but is inline after about 3.25 other bookrings--will try to fly through to this one--however I appreciate your patience!

Journal Entry 32 by skizeye9 from Washington, District of Columbia USA on Thursday, March 11, 2010
Okay I just finished the bookray book I had to finish before I could start this one. So I will be starting on this one this weekend! Hopefully won't take too long. I apologize for the delay and appreciate everyone's patience!

Journal Entry 33 by skizeye9 from Washington, District of Columbia USA on Tuesday, April 13, 2010
What a rambling, weird book. I kind of had to push through this one. I couldn't tell where it was going and it didn't really have much of a plot to my opinion. It was more about introducing the inside of one woman's mind and her takes on everything around her--which seems a bit self-indulgent to me. Her feminist crusade seems a bit over the top to me.

However, as someone about to write her own book I loved hearing her thought processes when it came to her writing. That was definitely fascinating. I still don't think I got the whole goodness and her daughter's issue. But whatever.

Glad I pushed through. Very interested in reading her Pulitzer Prize winning book to see how different it is.

Will PM to send this on it's way to the next person.

Journal Entry 34 by skizeye9 at Bookring, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Released 10 yrs ago (4/15/2010 UTC) at Bookring, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

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On its way to tabby90!

Journal Entry 35 by tabby90 from High Point, North Carolina USA on Saturday, April 17, 2010
Got in the mail, thanks.

Journal Entry 36 by tabby90 from High Point, North Carolina USA on Tuesday, May 18, 2010
A short book but hard for me to get into. Well written, I guess I'm just not in this kind of mood. I guess most of the reviews here agree. A lot of the time it's not clear what the book is about. Is it grief? goodness? feminism? writing? trauma? hopelessness?
I was interested in Norah and why she ran away but after a cursory explanation we never got to hear from Norah and what was going on in her mind.

Journal Entry 37 by seldombites at Rockhampton, Queensland Australia on Wednesday, September 08, 2010
Hello Kitty Thanks

G'day,

Just checking in to let you know I am safe and sound. I am having a nice visit with fairy-whispers before continuing on my travels. I hope you’re having as much fun as I am!

With Great Affection,

Your Book :-)

Journal Entry 38 by seldombites at Rockhampton, Queensland Australia on Saturday, September 18, 2010
I tried several times to read this, but the writing style really bugged me and I simply could not get past the first chapter. Hopefully the next reader will have better luck.

Journal Entry 39 by seldombites at Rockhampton Train Station in Rockhampton, Queensland Australia on Saturday, September 18, 2010

Released 10 yrs ago (9/18/2010 UTC) at Rockhampton Train Station in Rockhampton, Queensland Australia

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G'day


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