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The Road Through the Wall (Penguin Classics)…
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The Road Through the Wall (Penguin Classics) (1948 original; edició 2013)

de Shirley Jackson (Autor), Ruth Franklin (Pròleg)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
329968,690 (3.68)34
The compelling novel that began Shirley Jackson's legendary career Pepper Street is a really nice, safe California neighborhood. The houses are tidy and the lawns are neatly mowed. Of course, the country club is close by, and lots of pleasant folks live there. The only problem is they knocked down the wall at the end of the street to make way for a road to a new housing development. Now, that's not good--it's just not good at all. Satirically exploring what happens when a smug suburban neighborhood is breached by awful, unavoidable truths, The Road Through the Wall is the tale that launched Shirley Jackson's heralded career. For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.… (més)
Membre:mesalamb
Títol:The Road Through the Wall (Penguin Classics)
Autors:Shirley Jackson (Autor)
Altres autors:Ruth Franklin (Pròleg)
Informació:Penguin Classics (2013), 208 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:
Etiquetes:Cap

Informació de l'obra

The Road Through the Wall de Shirley Jackson (1948)

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Es mostren 1-5 de 9 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Shirley Jackson brings her uncanny wit and astute observations to SUBURBIA!

A huge ensemble cast makes this a difficult one to connect with, but it's oh so clever and filled to the brim with absurd reality.

This isn't the best Jackson for readers looking for a strong story or character arcs, but as good as any looking for top-notch irony and a deeper understanding of people. ( )
  chrisblocker | Nov 29, 2020 |
Jackson's first novel, finally put back into print (in high style) by Penguin classics.

Reading a well-known author's early work is a strange experience. Of course, she had already written "The Lottery", but in the novel form her style was still developing. In the residents of Pepper Street, Jackson has sketched out wicked portraits of suburban middle-class hypocrisy. The community is dissected from the top down, from the country-club aspiring snobs and attendant social climbers to a young girl trying to take care of her disabled sister alone without raising the suspicions of prying, "neighborly" neighbors. Two characters, elderly women living by themselves, are interesting of themselves, but also considering how much Jackson wrote later about the woman alone and her particular place (or lack thereof) in society.

What most readers will notice is the near-absence of the supernatural and horror elements, though there are tinges here and there throughout. However, nearly everyone is mental.

It's mostly through the children that Jackson depicts daily life. She crafts each of them as an individual, but none are immune from the mob mentality or the cruelties their parents consciously and unconsciously pass onto them. In today's world of heightened "bully" awareness it shouldn't shock us what callous monsters children are, but through Jackson's eyes it's heartbreaking. What plot there is concerns the eventual removal of a wall at the end of their neighborhood and the fear of the social miscegenation that will erupt because of its absence. But the novel is well worth the read simply for the way that Jackson can write about people and their relations with each other. Jackson could Observe. ( )
  ManWithAnAgenda | Feb 18, 2019 |
This isn't a novel about a character. It's a novel about a whole neighborhood, and that's quite a number of characters, and that's quite a bit difficult keeping them all straight. I'm going to have to reread this because it's interesting and I think I'll get more out of it on a second read, but on a first read I give it 3*** because of the confusing number of characters. ( )
  CurrerBell | Mar 26, 2017 |
This was Shirley Jackson's first book, and it doesn't hold up to the standards she set in her later novels and short stories. But it is an interesting work for a reader who has read other books by her, as it's possible to catch a glimpse of the themes she would explore so brilliantly later.

The story takes place on Pepper Street, a suburban California community of people for whom a house there is the best they can achieve, at least for the time being. School is out for the summer, and the children of various ages play, trouble and torment each other, and clash or make peace with their families. Jackson introduces the reader to each of the families, and none of them, with the possible exception of the shunned Jewish family, is one anyone would want to be part of. There is the mother who opens her daughter's locked desk to read her private poems and other writings, and the mother who continues to refer to her 16-year-old son as her adopted son, and the girl who loves to needle the others, and the younger boy who is avoided by everyone because he is a little strange (or is he a little strange because everyone avoids him?), and many more. Every now and then some of the braver teenagers venture a few blocks away to some of the stores that serve the broader community and even meet people who don't live on Pepper Street.

What this book really portrays is the claustrophobia of conformity and an obsession with class. None of the adults wants to rock the boat; they all want to behave in the "right" way. But some changes inevitably occur, and there are outsiders. Along with the Jewish family, who are basically ignored, there is a rental house, and about two-thirds of the way through the book a very strange family with an almost nonexistent mother and two girls, the older of whom manages the family and takes care of the younger one who is apparently mentally challenged in some undefined way; the family also seems to have an inexplicable source of cash. The younger girl behaves completely freely, which is very transgressive for Pepper Street. Towards the very end of the book, a completely horrifying and shocking event takes place.

The wall is at the end of the street, and towards the end it is being knocked down so the undeveloped land beyond it can be built on. Needless to say, this disturbs the residents of Pepper Street (who might move in?), but I have been thinking about it and the title, since the breaking down of the wall only takes place when the book is almost over. So, obviously, the wall is metaphoric and creative people need to break through it.

Jackson is an excellent writer, so these points aren't as obvious as I've made them sound, but the book is almost as claustrophobic as the the street and this was an interesting but not really an enjoyable read.
7 vota rebeccanyc | Jan 31, 2016 |
I was NOT expecting that ending! I'm glad I went into this one with low expectations, because it really impressed me - it was both quintessential Shirley Jackson (ambiguous ending, slowly-building tension, the warping of commonplace occurrences and character types into something sinister) and not at all (the setting: sunny suburbia, nothing supernatural in sight). I kept comparing it to a Sinclair Lewis novel; she's pulling back the curtains on an overly-idealized bit of Americana and revealing the (bigoted, judgmental, gossipy) rot within. The ending, though - 100% classic Shirley Jackson. The last 20 pages were a gut punch. ( )
  KLmesoftly | Nov 10, 2014 |
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Jackson, Shirleyautor primaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Franklin, RuthPròlegautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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The compelling novel that began Shirley Jackson's legendary career Pepper Street is a really nice, safe California neighborhood. The houses are tidy and the lawns are neatly mowed. Of course, the country club is close by, and lots of pleasant folks live there. The only problem is they knocked down the wall at the end of the street to make way for a road to a new housing development. Now, that's not good--it's just not good at all. Satirically exploring what happens when a smug suburban neighborhood is breached by awful, unavoidable truths, The Road Through the Wall is the tale that launched Shirley Jackson's heralded career. For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

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