Until I Find You

Until I Find You

Book - 2005
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Until I find you is the story of the actor Jack Burns, his life, loves, celebrity and astonishing search for the truth about his parents. When he is four years old, Jack travels with his mother Alice, a tattoo artist, to several North Sea ports in search of his father, William Burns. From Copenhagen to Amsterdam, William, a brilliant church organist and profligate womanizer, is always a step ahead, has always just departed in a wave of scandal, with a new tattoo somewhere on his body from a local master or "scratcher." Alice and Jack abandon their quest, and Jack is educated at schools in Canada and New England, including, tellingly, a girls' school in Toronto. His real education consists of his relationships with older women, from Emma Oastler, who initiates him into erotic life, to the girls of St. Hilda's, with whom he first appears on stage, to the abusive Mrs. Machado, whom he first meets when sent to learn wrestling at a local gym.
Publisher: New York : Random House, 2005.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780345479723
Call Number: IRVING
Characteristics: 824 p. ; 20 cm
Subjects: Actors -- Fiction.
Tattoo artists -- Fiction.
Missing persons -- Fiction.
Fathers and sons -- Fiction.


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Jun 20, 2016

First of all, the book is long. Maybe the longest of Irving's books, coming in a little over 800. Contrary to the previous comment, I wouldn't call it a "word-processor novel." Who uses a word processor anymore? Like Dickens, Irving immerses you in a story and he doesn't mind taking his time, which I think is a great strength. I was never bored and, in fact, think it's one of his greatest novels. Before you read it, make sure you are reasonably comfortable with a lot of underage sexuality.

Nov 02, 2015

A word-processor novel. There are good word-processor novels, of course, but this one shows no sign that the author ever had anything in mind when he sat down to write but increasing the word count. Well, that's not entirely true; some actual people appear in the book, and some disguised-actual people, and he seems to be settling scores with the latter, and sucking up to the former. But when I finally reached the longed-for end of the book, I wondered: what was all that about? I don't know.

Nov 07, 2013

About as hetero as modern novels get. It's hard to tell if Irving is appaled or over joyed at the notion of boys being seduced (and lady-handled) by older women. Is the protagonist a cad or a victim? Is he deserving of his success or just really lucky? It's a book you can give yourself over to for about 50 pages before putting it down realizing what a "wet dream" of a read it really is. And then do it over again. It took me a few months to read this between other books I liked better, but I somehow felt I had to finish another John Irving novel. (The first being the exceptional "Son of the Circus). While there were enjoyable parts, it is ultimately long winded and repetitive. Alas, not really worth the time when there are better books out there.

Jun 21, 2012

I like this book but it seems to run on a bit.

Jan 24, 2011

Not one of his best. Good in parts, but generally slightly disappointing compared with his previous books.

Nov 08, 2007

800 pages but I only liked 200 of them.

Dec 14, 2006

Very John Irving, complex, odd, light and dark. Not my all time favourite, but definitely recommended. May offend a few female readers, but only a few.


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