Bliss

Bliss This novel by the author of Oscar and Lucinda tells the story of a man who recovering from death is convinced that he is in hell For the first time in his life Harry Joy sees the world as it real

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  • Title: Bliss
  • Author: Peter Carey
  • ISBN: 9780571162727
  • Page: 458
  • Format: Paperback
  • This novel, by the author of Oscar and Lucinda, tells the story of a man who, recovering from death, is convinced that he is in hell For the first time in his life, Harry Joy sees the world as it really is, and takes up a notebook to explore and notate the true nature of the Underworld.

    One thought on “Bliss”

    1. So - a friend of mine is going to Greece soon and a friend of his collects honey and I tried some and told her it was the nicest honey I had ever tried (which was true - no exaggeration at all). My friend leaves next week and I thought it would be nice to send over a book with him to the honey collector. BUT, and I struggle to believe this is true, this book is out of print in Australia. This isn't a book by What's His Face No Name - this is Bliss by Peter Carey! What other nation does this to t [...]

    2. I met Peter Carey at a book signing in the small general books collection of the university textbook store that I worked at. I told him that I had skipped a "meteorology and weather" class to see him. He signed my copy of Bliss "Plenty of nice weather in this book."

    3. I am a bit of a sucker for black comedy and this book is exactly that. I found the whole story entertaining in the extreme. One thing Carey can certainly do is write well and the prose in this book is perfect. Some scenes where he is describing the Australian bush are superb. Add to that many beautifully drawn characters and I can understand why people are already calling this book a classic. A most enjoyable read, highly recommended - and I loved the neat little ending!

    4. Wow. What a bizarre and lovely book. I can't tell you much about what happens, because there are too many twists and turns in the life of Harry Joy, and to mention them would be to spoil the story. If you read it, just let it flow. Don't think too hard about it. It's like a window into a weird, paranoid, 80's version of Queensland, where everyone wears white linen suits and is quite mad. Great holiday read, especially if you're in the vicinity of a rainforest. *UPDATE* I just accidentally found [...]

    5. eh. yes, we should love trees more than silk shirts. yes, producing successful advertisements for companies that manufacture damaging goods is ethically compromising. but i'm not sure what else carey is getting at here. does he think it necessitates a stress-induced mental break for someone who prefers silk shirts to learn to like trees? do you have to think you're going to spend eternity in hell to become a better person? should we all assume that those are our choices? did no one know that who [...]

    6. Just couldn't get past page 200. Starts off great-- magnificently actually-- and then degenerates into wholly unbelievable chain of events. Actually, the events are believable-- the main character nearly dies, thinks he's in hell and then is thrown by (his hideous) family into mental instituion. That I can believe-- instutionalization happens-- however, Carey tells it likes its one big joke (except he doesn't really make it funny either.) If you really lust after satire, you might like this, but [...]

    7. Peter Carey is one of the greatest living novelists, widely tipped to become both Australia’s next Nobel prize winner for literature and the first man to win three Booker prizes. In 2010 I read his second Booker-prize winner, True History of the Kelly Gang, and found it to be a good book that only grew stronger in my memory. So it seems like a good idea to read his entire canon.Bliss is his first novel, following the unfortunate circumstances of Harry Joy, who has a heart attack one day and di [...]

    8. Peter Carey is a wizard with words. The story is hilarious and not a little crazy, but it is told with a deep regard for humanity. I guess you could call it a dark comedy, touching on things like industrial poisons, big business, advertising, and family dynamics. I saw the movie nearly twenty years ago, and have wanted to see it again, but I can't find it. (There is a popular movie called "Bliss", but it isn't the same one.) It wasn't at the library, but I did find this book. I read "The Tax Ins [...]

    9. Reading Carey's tale of the Joy family and their acquaintances is like biting into a tantalizing piece of fruit only to realize it is rotten in the middle, and no matter how much effort one puts into erasing the taste, the foulness lingers. Harry Joy (subtle name, huh?) is a fat-cat Australian in the early 80s who lives decadently off of his success in advertising as does his severely dysfunctional family. He is known as a "good guy" simply because he chooses to ignore anything that might spoil [...]

    10. This isn't my favorite of Peter Carey, and I'd hesitate to recommend it to people who haven't read him; it's definitely a first novel, stuffed with digressions and minor characters that don't quite work, and also the satirical tone has an aspect of contempt and despair that could be off-putting even if you like that kind of thing (sort of an early Martin Amis quality). But it's often beautiful and surprising, and it covers a lot of territory— Carey seems equally interested in the emotional and [...]

    11. This is the story of a man who dies on the operating table for a few minutes but then is revived. He believes, however, the he has died and gone to hell. And his belief that this is true is firmly upheld as he faces the awful truth about the dysfunctional state of his family for the first time.This is one of the most bizarre books I have ever read. It was utterly horrifying in parts, full of twists and turns and fascinating characters. I was thoroughly captivated by it and think about it often. [...]

    12. "How to Spoil a Good Plot" a dissertation in form of a novel titled "Bliss" by Peter Carey. Synopsis:Take a great idea. The apparent death and unexpected resuscitation of the main character would do.Develop the aforementioned great idea a step forward. The main character thinking that he actually died, went to Hell and that his own life after-resuscitation is just a day to day performance set up by demonic-characters impersonating his family and friends sounds perfect.Now, this is definitely som [...]

    13. This book tells the story of a man who dies and comes back to life. Peter Carey is a brilliant writer. He creates a unique world peopled with some strange characters and you just keep turning pages. You can't help it, you have to find out what happens next. The great ones always make it look so easy. The book, first published in 1981, has a timeless quality to it as it touches on issues including family, health, the environment, advertising, corporations, capitalism and imperialism. You might th [...]

    14. Took me awhile to get started, almost didn't pick it back up. But, I'm so glad I did. The last part of the book is an incredibly documented contrast to the prior three quarters of the book. It made me want to change my life. It also made me really sad as it clarified how truly messed up modern society is in many many ways, mainly environmental but also in terms of the way people treat each other and themselves, very insightful! This book is really forward thinking for having been written in the [...]

    15. I still love this book, nearly 25 years after I first read it and more than 15 years after I read it last. A peculiar blend of optimism and pessimism that moves me. A wonderful, meandering use of language and unexpected glimpses inside ourselves. "And in it's magical pattern there was now a new element, a new glow, a cast of a golden colour which suffused everything, the source of which was a character in a book he had half read of and would never finish. He was not interested in what happened t [...]

    16. Opening: KNOCKING AT THE HELLGATE: Harry Joy was to die, three times, but it was his first death which was to have the greatest effect on him, and it is this first death which we shall now witness.I am not supposed to be reading this now as there are many others in the queue that should take priority, however I have been lassoedMy first adult Carey; the 2* kids-lit I don't hold against him. High 3*

    17. It's easy to see why Carey went on to win awards. His writing is very literary, which is both this book's strength and weakness: Too many times the clever writing took centre stage, blitzing the story. I liked this story, liked these characters, but tired of the long-winded introspection and description about halfway in. (The last quarter of the book I merely skimmed to see how it ended.) Don't get me wrong, I enjoy clever, wity writing, but it should never be the star.

    18. After a cracking first half, I felt this very entertaining and amusing novel ran out of steam somewhat. Possibly this is because I knew how it would end (I've seen the movie and I've started to suspect that I've also already read this during my 1990s Carey jag).Well worth it just to enjoy the set up in the first third, and I imagine it will appeal to fans of JT Hospital, Marquez, Rushdie and / or magical realism who are fancying something a tad lighter.

    19. They call this book a classic, and I'm not going to argue with them! It is a highly unusual black satire that is as compelling as it is bizarre. I read it twice and must admit I enjoyed it more the second time. A corker.

    20. don't feel like finishing this story, since the whole atmosphere of it made me feel queasy and stressed maybe one day I'll pick it up again, but for now it's a one star rating.

    21. This is one of those slow reads that's worth it. Don't get daunted by the disturbing scene at the beginning

    22. Brilliant writing and character development. I'll never forget Honey Barbara and Harry Joy. When asked what it was like to read, by my son, I replied, "Like eating an excellently dense rye bread, with olive oil and Marmite." Not to be missed.

    23. A pretty good Carey, reminds me a bit of John Irving (a good thing). Australian hippie commune vs. the ad industry.

    24. I quite enjoyed this book. I wouldn’t say it was brilliant but it was certainly well written and an enjoyable read.

    25. Harry Joy dies and returns to life, convinced he is in Hell. I found the novel engaging in my teens, but tiresome now; little of the humor impressed and none of the characters were more than fleetingly relatable.

    26. A bit wooden at the start but finishes up with some rhythm and depth. I ought never forget that Harry was in hell.

    27. My favorite novel,Ken Grimwood'sReplay begins with the main character dying of a heart attack, then returning to life which forces him to examine what his past life had been and what he should do given this second chance. In Bliss, Harry Joy also dies at the very first page, but when he returns to life, he doesn't dwell on his past but thinks that he has moved on to Hell and all these people posing as his family are but Actors used to torture him. At the end of Replay, you are left with a new re [...]

    28. In "Bliss" Carey tells the tale of Harry Joy, an average familyman and businessman who is liked by his community and seemingly living an ordinary and content life. Until one day he collapses and dies. As he rises up from his body he glimpses Heaven and Hell and knows that they exist. His death lasts for only a few minutes and he soon returns to his body. After undergoing surgery Harry awakes and believes that the world around him is Hell and his family and friends are all actors in Hell who are [...]

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