Win a Family Weekend Break with Lovereading and VisitWiltshire - click here for details...

win prizes twitter
Search our site
The Guilty Wife by Elle Croft Read the opening extract of the brand new Elle Croft book before its publication on 25/01/2018

In Paradise by Peter Matthiessen
  

Sarah Broadhurst's view...

One of the great American writers who should have been much better known in his lifetime, this

contemplative, darkly funny, fascinating book was his last. Set during a zen retreat to Auschwitz

(which is based on an experience Matthiessen himself had) it sets about to explore feelings about and attitudes towards the Holocaust, half a century on. Clements Olin is an American scholar, descended from Polish aristocracy who is attending ostensibly to learn more about the strange suicide of an Auschwitz survivor. Inevitably he discovers things about himself, his family and the horror of what happened that he never expected to. A beautiful, challenging but extremely satisfying book.

If you like Peter Matthiessen you might also like to read books by Martin Amis, Howard Jacobson and Richard Ford.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst

The Good Book Guide logo The Good Book Guide Review. In 1996, Olin goes on a Zen retreat on the grounds of the death camps at Auschwitz-Birkenau in Poland, ostensibly to do research on the suicide of a survivor. But what was the real reason for his trip? His connections to Poland and the holocaust emerge and we discover the painful truth behind Olin’s trip. This complex tale, Matthiessen’s last novel before his death earlier this year, looks at the 20th-century nightmare of the holocaust and examines many uncomfortable issues in this hugely powerful and moving tale of a period of history that the author cannot let go of.
~ Caroline White

Win a SIGNED copy of The Wanderers and The Horseman!

To mark the release of second book in The West Country Trilogy by Tim Pears, we are giving away a SIGNED copy of both The Horseman and The Wanderers to THREE lucky winners!

To have a chance of winning one of these fantastic prizes, click the button below. Please note that this draw is open only for UK residents and is free to enter, multiple entries from the same email address will only be counted once.

The draw closes on 12 February 2018. The winners will be notified by 19 February 2018,

Good luck!

Enter prize draw Draw closes: 12/02/2018

Synopsis

In Paradise by Peter Matthiessen

In Paradise tells the story of a group of men and women who come together for a weeklong meditation retreat at the site of a World War II concentration camp, and the grief, rage and upsetting revelations that surface during their time together. Even as it probes the suffering, conflicts, and longings of these diverse characters, In Paradise raises provocative and unanswerable metaphysical questions: what responsibility comes with bearing witness to such cruelty and tragedy; and what insights into the nature of good and evil may be lost in the next decade or two, as the last survivors of - and witnesses to - the death camps pass away. Having participated in three Zen retreats at Auschwitz beginning in the 1990s, Matthiessen had long wished to comment on the ongoing fallout of last century's global catastrophe, but 'as a non-Jewish American journalist, I felt unqualified to do so, I felt I had no right. But approaching it as fiction - as a novelist, an artist - I eventually decided that I did. Only fiction would allow me to probe from a variety of viewpoints the great strangeness of what I had felt.'

Reviews

'The fiction of Peter Matthiessen is the reason a lot of people in my generation decided to be writers.'
Richard Ford

'His writing does every justice to the blood and fury of his themes.'
Don DeLillo

'Darkly humorous... [In Paradise] gives no hint of the writer's age or declining physical powers. The maturity of its insights, and its emotional restraint, are the only signs the author is not a youth'
The Herald

'A moving valedictory for one of America's most wide-ranging and poetical writers... compelling... vivid... hypnotic'
Financial Times

'Skilful... affecting and powerful... In Paradise gets at the heart of the defining tragic enigma of the 20th century... [It] is Matthiessen's complex and worthy adieu'
Jane Smiley, Guardian

'The best passages here are beautifully observed evocations of the place... There is much to meditate on and many reasons to read this novel'
The Times

'A dark but thoroughly testing, ambitious and thought-provoking novel'
Curious Animal

'Powerfully lyrical and atmospheric'
Observer

'A curious, risky novel'
Literary Review

'Lucid, compelling... A masterclass in fiction... Stunning'
Irish Times

About the Author

Peter Matthiessen is the author of more than thirty books and the only writer to win the National Book Award for both non-fiction (The Snow Leopard, in two categories, in 1979 and 1980) and fiction (Shadow Country, in 2008). A co-founder of The Paris Review and a world-renowned naturalist, explorer and activist, he died in April 2014.

More books by this author
Author 'Like for Like' recommendations

Loading similar books...
Loading other formats...

Book Info

Publication date

6th November 2014

Author

Peter Matthiessen

More books by Peter Matthiessen
Author 'Like for Like'
    recommendations

Publisher

Oneworld Publications

Format

Paperback
256 pages

Categories

Historical Fiction
eBook Favourites
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

ISBN

9781780746081

Lovereading has given me the opportunity to delve into new and exciting worlds of authors who I would never have tried before.

Glynis Elliott

The books for review are always great reads, brilliantly written, and introduces me to a huge variety of, established and new, authors.

Lesley Hart

Insightful reader reviews and unbiased recommendations. I don't know how I chose books before Lovereading! An essential for all book lovers.

Sarah Harper

I recommend Lovereading because you get honest reviews on a whole range of genres-there's something for everyone. It's the only site I need.

Sian Spinney

It has opened my eyes to different authors and genres. Just log on and try, you will be surprised and not want for reading material again.

Jocelyn Garvey

Books of the month/debuts of the month, kids/adults, fiction/non-fiction, free prize draws and free extracts, what's not to love?

Emma Smith

My horizons have been broadened by some of the books I have been lucky to review and I expect it to be no different in the future.

Daran Bellingham

Lovereading takes the guesswork out of finding your next read with "if you like you'll love" and extracts to help with your decision.

Sarah Bruch

Lovereading4kids

Lovereading4schools