The Guineveres

The Guineveres

A Novel

Book - 2016
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"In the vein of The Virgin Suicides, a dazzling debut novel about four girls inexplicably named Guinevere, all left by their parents to be raised by nuns"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York :, Flatiron Books,, 2016
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9781250086617
Branch Call Number: FICTION Domet 2016
Characteristics: 342 pages ; 24 cm


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Four girls - all named Guinevere- are left by their parents at an orphanage run by nuns. Each girl cares for a wounded soldier during WWII.

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Apr 11, 2018

A pretty run-of-the-mill "orphan" coming of age story. The "life at boarding school" scenario is pretty well mined at this point (Bronte, Rowling, etc..) and there's nothing new here. I had trouble seeing any of the four girls as individuals, they were not sharply drawn enough to stand apart from the group. The "backstory" chapters were basically a litany of contemporary social problems. And the vividly horrific life stories of the various saints did not add much to the contemporary narrative.

Still, as the emotional stakes grow higher toward the end , the account of how schoolgirl ideas about romance can actually grow into devotion was rather moving. But there is an unsatisfying ending for the Guinevere who is the main narrator.

Apr 01, 2018

Gave up a third of the way through. In my opinion The four Guineveres weren't real people nor was the time period discernible from the setting description. (What WAS the time period anyway?) Sorry I wasted my time with this book; there are too many other titles on my To Read list.

Feb 16, 2017

It’s possible a catholic background is necessary to fully appreciate this coming of age story of four girls named Guinevere who bond for the simply reason of their names after each was abandoned by their family in a convent/orphanage. Domet totally nails the magical thinking and vulnerability of teen-age girls.

Oct 27, 2016

I really enjoyed this unique coming-of-age story. Four girls named Guinevere become close after being left by their families to grow up in a convent, from which they desperately want to escape. They see a chance to leave when wounded soldiers arrive at the convent, and the girls form a plan to return to the outside world to nurse "their boys"--if the boys ever wake up from their comatose states. Charming and bittersweet, the book shows us how the girls wrestle with questions of friendship, faith, and forgiveness. I loved Sarah Domet's writing--she created a beautiful and melancholic world filled with hope and tragedy and characters who embodied the same qualities. I'm already eager to read more from her.


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