Madame: A Novel [Antoni Libera, Agnieszka Kolakowska] on * FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. In a novel set in Soviet-era Poland, a boy is . A review and a link to other reviews of Madame by Antoni Libera. Madame by Antoni Libera – book cover, description, publication history.

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The story itself is interesting and wonderfully executed, but Libera weaves in threads about chess, literature, language, history, and politics, making the book a nearly nonstop educational experience. The Scotsman This is an old story made fresh with an excellent evocation of a spirit-crushing school system – a microcosm of communist rule under which the layers of life are corrupted by concessions, compromises and deceptions.

I read it through largely because it was the only book I took along on a day vacation. A jack-of-all-trades, one day turning to jazz, the next to theatre, the next to literary speculation, then playing amateur detective and spy, he never seems fully convincing. While he starts innocently and eagerly, more interested in solving a puzzle than in making a romantic conquest, the things he learns about Madame cause him to become more sober and compassionate toward her. I came upon the book Madame in a thread on the Chicklit message boards.

AmazonGlobal Ship Orders Internationally. Dec 24, Anna rated it liked it. But I ended up being so impressed by the way the stories weaved through the last half that I couldn’t go down to a 3.

Madame by Antoni Libera

I would probably give this a 3. Nov 10, Agnes rated it it was amazing. This all makes for an exceptionally good reading experience, despite the fact that the narrator appears to mirror the knowledge of the author who is a literary critic himself rather than that of himself.


From the beginning I oibera smitten. Alexa Actionable Analytics for the Web. It was probably some “desert island books” kind of list, because there was no discussion of the book, only a mention from a reader that Madame was her favorite Polish-language book and furthermore probably her favorite any-language book.

I will concede that it has its flaws: He also makes this brimful novel a telling critique of the consequences of both myopic anti-intellectualism and as the narrator remarks when antonni an exhibition of Picasso madamee, “man’s. Every time I finish a book I think whether I liked it or not The story is told in the first-person and is surely semi-autobiographical. Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Something about the way she said it made me make note of the title, and I borrowed it from the library last time I went.

I also quite enjoyed the element of Polish history too, which was written brilliantly and really gave a sense of where this was madamr what was going on at the time. And, when his school’s beautiful new headmistress “Madame le Directrice” doubles as his French teacher, the. It is a fairly entertaining volume, falling a bit flat only because it is not certain enough what it wants to be — and because the author has not been able to weave the many smaller tales and episodes in the novel neatly into one.

Apr 22, Vaiva rated it really liked it. This book made me want to learn french, memorise every book in my library, and jump up on a stage and a recite an unprepared and clever speech perfectly. Set in Soviet run Poland of the s and s. If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support? Francophiles will especially like this novel as will fans of literary works and those who enjoy great prose and hopeless romantics and also fans of political sagas, theatre, Greek tragedies, and budding young intellectuals.


The book is intelligent and demanding, and yet reads deliciously even in translation.

Refresh and try again. Readers who admired Bernhard Schlink’s The Reader won’t want to miss this scintillating bildungsroman about a.

Nov 27, Dorothy rated it it was amazing. And a title Madame? Our young narrator-hero is suffering through the regulated boredom of high school when he is transfixed by a new teacher –an elegant “older woman” she is thirty-two who bewitches him with her glacial beauty and her strict intelligence.

Somehow Libera manages to couch his erudition in such delightful language and storytelling that the intelligence of the book is invigorating rather than intimidating. Along the way our protagonist stages and watches plays, sees The protagonist is a very precocious 18 year-old Polish student.

Get to Know Us. Similarly the illustrative quotes chosen here are merely those the complete review subjectively believes represent the tenor and judgment of the review as a whole. I’m not defending the Soviet system.

Apr 25, David Gilfillan rated anoni it was amazing. Not without some reward though. I want to linger in Madame’s world a little longer It is funny and engaging from the first page, and I looked forward to returning to it every day until I had read the last page.