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The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards: A Novel…
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The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards: A Novel (ALA Notable Books for Adults) (edició 2013)

de Kristopher Jansma (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
3562454,928 (3.83)11
"An inventive and witty debut about a young man's quest to become a writer and the misadventures in life and love that take him around the globe From as early as he can remember, the hopelessly unreliable--yet hopelessly earnest--narrator of this ambitious debut novel has wanted to become a writer. From the jazz clubs of Manhattan to the villages of Sri Lanka, Kristopher Jansma's irresistible narrator will be inspired and haunted by the success of his greatest friend and rival in writing, the eccentric and brilliantly talented Julian McGann, and endlessly enamored with Julian's enchanting friend, Evelyn, the green-eyed girl who got away. After the trio has a disastrous falling out, desperate to tell the truth in his writing and to figure out who he really is, Jansma's narrator finds himself caught in a never-ending web of lies. As much a story about a young man and his friends trying to make their way in the world as a profoundly affecting exploration of the nature of truth and storytelling, The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards will appeal to readers of Tom Rachman's The Imperfectionists and Jennifer Egan's Pulitzer Prize-winning A Visit from the Goon Squad with its elegantly constructed exploration of the stories we tell to find out who we really are. "-- "Can a leopard ever really change his spots? Can a person ever change? These are the timeless questions that Kristopher Jansma asks in this enchanting debut novel about three great friends--two men and one woman--their triumphs and failures in life and love and their globe-spanning adventures. From the jazz clubs of Manhattan to the villages of Sri Lanka, these three remarkably engaging characters grow up and grow old, fall in and out of love, write novels and wed wealthy European aristocrats. As much a story about a young man and his friends trying to find their way in the world as a whipsmart exploration of the nature of truth and storytelling, The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards will delight readers with its near perfect alchemy of emotional depth and warmth, formal playfulness, and sophisticated but always accessible exploration of what it means to grow up"--… (més)
Membre:rapunzle
Títol:The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards: A Novel (ALA Notable Books for Adults)
Autors:Kristopher Jansma (Autor)
Informació:Viking (2013), Edition: First Edition, 272 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:****
Etiquetes:goodreads

Detalls de l'obra

The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards de Kristopher Jansma

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» Mira també 11 mencions

Es mostren 1-5 de 24 (següent | mostra-les totes)
I had the distinct impression on finishing Leopards that I'd just spent time - 250 pages worth of it - inside the crazy mind of a writer. I began caring more about the actual craft of writing more than about the fictional (or are they?) characters in the book.

A phrase has been coined for the time I live in: these are "post-truth" times. Identities and narratives are invented and disseminated on the internet. Sifting through the post-truth detritus can be exhausting while people seem more entertained by the allure of invented conspiracy theories and faux news commentary. These times are ripe to delve along with Jansma into an exploration of what is truth, and what fiction?

Did the narrator ever reveal his true name?

All good books are alike in that they are truer than if they had really happened... -Ernest Hemingway

Truth, like gold, is to be obtained not by its growth, but by washing away from it all that is not gold. -Leo Tolstoy

The truth is beautiful. Without doubt; and so are lies. -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Chapter 1: What can be said at all can be said clearly, and what we cannot talk about we must pass over in silence. -Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico Philosophicus

Chapter 2: Writing, at its best, is a lonely life...For he does his work alone and if he is a good enough writer he must face eternity, or the lack of it, each day. -Ernest Hemingway

Chapter 3: Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? Neither can you do good, who are accustomed to doing evil. -JER. 13:23

Chapter 4: What truth? You see where truth is, and where untruth is, but I seem to have lost my sight and see nothing. -Anton Chekhov, The Cherry Orchard

Chapter 5: By God, if I ever cracked, I'd try to make the world crack with me. Listen! The world only exists through your apprehension of it, and so it's much better to say that it's not you that's cracked -- it's the Grand Canyon. -F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Crack-Up

Chapter 6: It is good to know the truth, but it is better to speak of palm trees. -Arab Proverb

Chapter 7: The far east. Lovely spot it must be: the garden of the world, big lazy leavers to float about on, cactuses, flowery meads, snaky lianas they call them. Wonder is it like that. Those Cinghalese lobbing around in the sun, in dolce far niente. Not doing a hand's turn all day. Sleep six months out of twelve. Too hot to quarrel. Influence of the climate. Lethargy. Flowers of idleness. -James Joyce, Ulysses

Chapter 8: [He] met his own image walking in the garden. / That apparition, sole of men, he saw. For know there are two worlds of life and death: / One that which thou beholdest; but the other / Is underneath the grave, where do inhabit / The shadows of all forms that think and live, / Till death unite them and they part no more ... -Percy Bysshe Shelley, Prometheus Unbound

Chapter 9: It is entirely conceivable that life's splendor forever lies in wait about each one of us in all its fullness, but veiled from view, deep down, invisible, far off. It is there, though, not hostile, not reluctant, not deaf. If you summon it by the right word, but its right name, it will come. This is the essence of magic, which does not create but summons. -Franz Kafka, Diaries

Chapter 10: Do not trouble yourself much to get new things, whether clothes or friends. Turn the old; return to them. Things do not change; we change. - Henry David Thoreau, Walden ( )
  Linda_Louise | Jan 20, 2021 |
Contemporary fiction is just not my thing.
  resoundingjoy | Jan 1, 2021 |
I kind of wish I'd read this instead of listened to it, because it would've been helpful to flip back to previous pages/sections. This book is a shape-shifter, but fascinating because of it. The unreliable narrator, whose name changes frequently to suit various circumstances tells us early on that he wants to "tell the truth, but tell it Slant" after his freshman creative writing prof quotes Emily Dickinson. That leaves the reader wondering what of this fiction is "true"? We are warned though that the narrator aspires to be a writer, that he finds material in all the people and situations around him and that he lies effortlessly. At the heart of the story are the three books he has written but lost, the trio of his friendship/love affair with Julian/jeffrey/Anton, another aspiring writer and Evelyn, the unattainable successful NY actress whom he loves idealistically. There are repeating motifs of time and art and gold (his watch, a painting) and following this thread helps to connect some of the narrative that morphs with different worldwide locations and aliases. It telescopes into stories within stories -- and presents the challenge to remember which one is the "fiction." Very cleverly done, but if you don't like the "meta" approach or non-linear stories, not for you. ( )
  CarrieWuj | Oct 24, 2020 |
I think I’m beginning to understand the unity of the book; the first time I spread them out over so much time that the chapters, which are so like short stories that I started to think of them almost in that way.

No, but Billy Littleford is Julian McGann, Betsey Littleford is Evelyn Lynn Madison Demont. (Jan Sokol is Rodrigo, Shelly is Suzanne White.)

I think it’s great. It’s the Old Brain gone wild. [The irrational brain. The dreamer.]
  smallself | Oct 29, 2019 |
The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards is a brilliant novel that unfolds like a set of Russian nesting dolls: each chapter unveils more details about the characters and the plot, but with each chapter Jansma's unreliable protagonist leaves the reader with more questions than answers. What is truth? What is a lie?

This novel is also a beautiful love letter to writing, and explores the relationship between the writer and the written word in such a way that I was left inspired to pick up my pen. ( )
  bookishblond | Oct 24, 2018 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 24 (següent | mostra-les totes)
The strain of living up to this exhortation shows, resulting in a novel that's so emphatically slanted — or skewed — it's practically in italics. But there's plenty to relish in this noteworthy debut, especially on revisiting the opening pages once you've made it to the end. Typical of Jansma's cunning artistry is a lovely checkers metaphor that explains being kinged as "gaining the ability to reverse course. To go against the tide, as it were, back to where you've begun." It's a possibility that holds out hope for Jansma's narrator. The question is, can this liar — er, leopard — change his spots? And can Jansma extend his purview beyond writers?
afegit per ozzer | editaNPR, Heller McAlpin (Mar 26, 2013)
 

» Afegeix-hi altres autors (3 possibles)

Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Kristopher Jansmaautor primaritotes les edicionscalculat
Ballerini, EdoardoNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Volhejnová, VeronikaTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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All good books are alike in that they are trues if they had really happened... - Ernest Hamingway
Truth, like gold, is to be obtained not by its growth but by washing away from it all that is not gold. - Leo Tolstoy
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For Leah
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I've lost every book I've ever written.
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"An inventive and witty debut about a young man's quest to become a writer and the misadventures in life and love that take him around the globe From as early as he can remember, the hopelessly unreliable--yet hopelessly earnest--narrator of this ambitious debut novel has wanted to become a writer. From the jazz clubs of Manhattan to the villages of Sri Lanka, Kristopher Jansma's irresistible narrator will be inspired and haunted by the success of his greatest friend and rival in writing, the eccentric and brilliantly talented Julian McGann, and endlessly enamored with Julian's enchanting friend, Evelyn, the green-eyed girl who got away. After the trio has a disastrous falling out, desperate to tell the truth in his writing and to figure out who he really is, Jansma's narrator finds himself caught in a never-ending web of lies. As much a story about a young man and his friends trying to make their way in the world as a profoundly affecting exploration of the nature of truth and storytelling, The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards will appeal to readers of Tom Rachman's The Imperfectionists and Jennifer Egan's Pulitzer Prize-winning A Visit from the Goon Squad with its elegantly constructed exploration of the stories we tell to find out who we really are. "-- "Can a leopard ever really change his spots? Can a person ever change? These are the timeless questions that Kristopher Jansma asks in this enchanting debut novel about three great friends--two men and one woman--their triumphs and failures in life and love and their globe-spanning adventures. From the jazz clubs of Manhattan to the villages of Sri Lanka, these three remarkably engaging characters grow up and grow old, fall in and out of love, write novels and wed wealthy European aristocrats. As much a story about a young man and his friends trying to find their way in the world as a whipsmart exploration of the nature of truth and storytelling, The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards will delight readers with its near perfect alchemy of emotional depth and warmth, formal playfulness, and sophisticated but always accessible exploration of what it means to grow up"--

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