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The Neon Bible (1989)

von John Kennedy Toole

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1,0601814,668 (3.5)37
Shy, poor and friendless, David grows up a reluctant outsider in the small-town Bible-belt of the 1940s. His sole ally is Aunt Mae - magnificent, voluminous, yellow-haired Aunt Mae, with her theatrical past, film star fantasies and outrageous gowns.
Kürzlich hinzugefügt vonWisJohnson, private Bibliothek, annamontaness, OrinocoBooks, llibresantjoan, TeachLibBert, addeter, kathipink
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This was okay, a little reminiscent of the kind of "literary" writing that you read in high school English classes though. It's nowhere near the book that A Confederacy of Dunces is, but I think Toole knew that, and if it didn't bother him much it didn't really bother me either since it's such a quick read. The main character is a simple Southern boy who relates his memories of growing up in a tiny, stereotypically churchy Mississippi town during the Depression and World War 2 era. It's basically about how the South is the most intolerable area of the country, which I can agree with. There really isn't much to say about the book since it feels like it's over so quickly, which is a shame since it reads more like a Tennessee Williams or William Faulkner piece than it does like A Confederacy of Dunces. It's sad Toole didn't write more. ( )
  aaronarnold | May 11, 2021 |
1st edition. ( )
  Adammmmm | Sep 10, 2019 |
Toole's Confederacy of Dunces has long been one of my favourite books; this, his only other work (published posthumously in 1989 but actually written at the age of sixteen) is a totally different style, but very readable.
Narrator David is a quiet only child in a small town of the American South. Father is violent and abusive, Mother increasingly strange; and Aunt Mae, who lodges with them, an erstwhile performer and good time girl. As the story opens, David is on a train...but he takes us back through his1940s childhood. Violence, brutality and poverty seem frequent features; teachers, good and bad; a first date; the War. And the local society, deeply entrenched in Christian revivals and conformity.
The unfortunate events build to a sudden crescendo, and we find out what David's doing on that train...
A book that portends a great writer in the making. ( )
  starbox | Nov 19, 2018 |
Absolutely loved this story. Incredibly tragic, yet telling and truthful story where the main character, David, has done nothing to deserve any of his misfortune.

If you don't mind the kind of book that is more of a streaming story with minimum plot, and also don't mind a story which is sad throughout, then go ahead and emotionally invest in The Neon Bible. ( )
  christina.h | Mar 2, 2018 |
It’s stunning to me that this was written by Toole at the age of 16. The prose is simple and spare, and I suppose occasionally a little awkward, but his observations on life and people are fantastic. The violence of childhood from other kids and adults, the hypocrisy of religion, the pathos and transience of life – it’s all here. Toole reminds me of fellow Southerner Carson McCullers in style, at least in this book, and remarkable talent at an early age. I loved his masterpiece, ‘A Confederacy of Dunces’, but had put off reading this one because I wondered how good could it be, from a teenager, and published posthumously by his family, who were litigating over it. I’m certainly glad I read it, and considered tacking on an extra 1/2 star. It also reminds me of just how tragic his suicide at the age of 31, then unpublished, really was. ( )
1 abstimmen gbill | Mar 11, 2017 |
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This is the first time I've been on a train.
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Shy, poor and friendless, David grows up a reluctant outsider in the small-town Bible-belt of the 1940s. His sole ally is Aunt Mae - magnificent, voluminous, yellow-haired Aunt Mae, with her theatrical past, film star fantasies and outrageous gowns.

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Durchschnitt: (3.5)
0.5
1 5
1.5 1
2 14
2.5 7
3 79
3.5 22
4 71
4.5 4
5 28

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