Alias Grace: A Novel

by Margaret Atwood | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 9780385490443 Global Overview for this book
Registered by JenKazoo of Shreveport, Louisiana USA on 3/28/2008
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15 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by JenKazoo from Shreveport, Louisiana USA on Friday, March 28, 2008
Margaret Atwood is my favorite author and at one time I wanted to have a collection of all of her books, but in the spirit of bookcrossing I will mark this book as AVL. This was probably my third favorite Atwood book. The story is about a woman named Grace Marks, who in real life spend thirty years in prison for the murder of two people. The story follows Grace's life and questions what really happened the day of the murders. I love historical fiction and while this novel is only loosely based on Grace Marks it is very intriguing and makes me want to look into it more and do a little research. I also want to read Atwood's The Journals of Susanna Moodie, which I believe were also inspired by the Grace Marks story.



There are no specific rules for this ray, just a few guidelines that will make the ray enjoyable for everyone. Please be sure to journal the book when you receive it. Also, make a journal entry again after you have read the book to let us know what you thought. Say as much or as little as you like. It helps keep the ray going at a comfortable pace if you PM the next person when you are nearing the end of the book. If you feel like you may need to keep the book longer than a few weeks please PM me and let me know. Be respectful of other members of the ray who would like to read this book! Have fun reading, I hope you enjoy the book!

Please make sure I have your name spelled correctly because I have a bad habit of making careless mistakes when it comes to typing! Thanks!

Here is the temporary order of the Ray, it is SUBJECT TO CHANGE:

Stacers1973 (US SHIPPING)
DitteL (DENMARK, PREFERS EURO SHIPPING)
Mallary (PREF FRANCE, WILL SHIP INT'L)
bilbi (FRANCE, PREFERS EURO, WILL SHIP INT'L)
Caroley (UK, INT'L SHIPPING)
vincentthefish (LONDON, NO PREF STATED)(skipped)
bearyfriend (SINGAPORE, PREFERS ASIA/PACIFIC SHIPPPING, WILL SHIP INT'L) Neuilly (US, PREFERS US/CANADA SHIPPING)<-----------BOOK IS HERE



Journal Entry 2 by JenKazoo at Gladstone, Oregon USA on Thursday, October 2, 2008

Released 13 yrs ago (10/2/2008 UTC) at Gladstone, Oregon USA

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The book is off to the first person in the ray. I hope everyone enjoys it!

Journal Entry 3 by Stacers1973 from Gladstone, Oregon USA on Friday, October 10, 2008
The book arrived safe and sound, Thanks for sharing. This looks really interesting and I have enjoyed the other Atwood books I have discovered this year :)

Journal Entry 4 by Stacers1973 from Gladstone, Oregon USA on Sunday, November 9, 2008
I started reading this in dribs and drabs, with only time for a page here, three there -- I read it this way for about 40 pages and the story was feeling very disjointed for me, due to my reading availability. However, one morning I got up early and pounded through twenty pages which seemed to kickstart my heart when it came to this story, the rest of which I read through very quickly. It was pretty interesting to go through Grace's memories while Dr. Jordan was trying to figure her out, while his own side-story was a bit of a train wreck. The characters were very vivid and usually known as either likeable or unlikeable pretty quickly. The ending was very good. On a side note I really liked the quilting names and drawings along with each main chapter. (Great little details throughout.)
I will PM DitteL to confirm shipping info and get this Ray moving :)
Thanks for sharing JenKazoo - great author!

Journal Entry 5 by Stacers1973 at Gladstone, Oregon USA on Monday, November 10, 2008

Released 13 yrs ago (11/10/2008 UTC) at Gladstone, Oregon USA

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Mailed to DitteL this morning, Air mail. Happy reading!

Journal Entry 6 by DitteL from Næstved, Storstrøms Amt Denmark on Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Picked up at the postoffice today. I'll start reading it right a way so that it hopefulle can continue its journay soon.

Thanks for sharing JenKazoo and thanks for sending it to me Stacers1973.

Journal Entry 7 by DitteL from Næstved, Storstrøms Amt Denmark on Thursday, November 27, 2008
I finished reading the book this morning. I think it's quite intersting that the book is based on real life and I enjoyed reading it especially the parts where Grace tells Dr. Jordan about her life. I didn't really care for the letters that Dr. Jordan send and received from his mother - I didn't quite understand why Atwood thought that I as reader needed to know this.

I must say that eventhough I like this book, I think that 'The Handmaid's Tale' is better.

I've already got Mallary's address and will post the book tomorrow. Thanks again JenKazoo for sharing.

Journal Entry 8 by DitteL at Frederiksberg, København Amt Denmark on Thursday, November 27, 2008

Released 13 yrs ago (11/28/2008 UTC) at Frederiksberg, København Amt Denmark

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Mailed to the next reader on the list. I hope you'll enjoy it

Journal Entry 9 by Mallary from Ginestas, Languedoc-Roussillon France on Tuesday, January 6, 2009
I felt sure I journalled this book when it arrived but clearly I didn't. I am so sorry about that.
I received the book about a month ago and have read it and am now ready to post it on!
Thanks for sharing this with us all.
I will pm bilbi for her address.

Journal Entry 10 by Mallary at Ginestas, Languedoc-Roussillon France on Thursday, January 22, 2009

Released 13 yrs ago (1/22/2009 UTC) at Ginestas, Languedoc-Roussillon France

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bilbi asked to be skipped so this is winging it's way to Caroley in the UK.
Enjoy!

Journal Entry 11 by Caroley from Birmingham, West Midlands United Kingdom on Saturday, January 24, 2009
Received today thanks :)

Journal Entry 12 by Caroley from Birmingham, West Midlands United Kingdom on Sunday, February 1, 2009
I've just finished this and have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed it. It's the fourth Margaret Atwood that I've read, and is so very different from the others. I think Handmaid's tale is still my favourite, but this comes a very close second.
I love the way the story gradually unfolded and I really didn't see that ending coming.

I've already PMd the next person for their address and will post on as soon as I get it.

Thanks for organising the ray Jen :)

Journal Entry 13 by Caroley at Birmingham, West Midlands United Kingdom on Saturday, February 7, 2009

Released 12 yrs ago (2/7/2009 UTC) at Birmingham, West Midlands United Kingdom

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Posted airmail to Bearyfriend

Journal Entry 14 by bearyfriend from Singapore, Singapore Singapore on Monday, February 16, 2009
Wow, a bull came charging all the way from the Bullring SC in Burmingham. Very impressive sculpture (postcard), thanks. Hope it will revive the economy in this year of the ox. I'll journal again after reading.

Journal Entry 15 by bearyfriend from Singapore, Singapore Singapore on Monday, March 2, 2009
I have received Neuilly's address, will let the book travel by end of the week. Will update again my reviews.

Journal Entry 16 by bearyfriend from Singapore, Singapore Singapore on Saturday, March 7, 2009
Sending it off to Neuilly. I have enjoyed reading this historical fiction, was so engrossed in the case until I lost myself in Atwood's fictionalized writing thinking the ending was the actual happenings when in reality some of the real facts were not known, as being explained in the Author's Afterword.

When I started reading, I thought Grace was suffering from schizo or split personality kind of illness that's why she couldn't remember the murder scenes and what she had done. After I couldn't be sure whether she really was the murderess, either she was a very good actress or that she really was suffering from amnesia, was possessed and having sleepwalking disorder. I had even wondered whether the girlfriend she talked about did really exist or just based on her imagination. In the end, seemed the "real culprit" came to light, but we'll never know whether it's the truth or just a pretense. It will remain a mystery.

She seemed to be very intelligent and could speak and write very well, from her correspondences and the facts written in the book. There were quite a lot of corresponding letters in the book, written by her doctor, and all the other concerned parties who petitioned for her release.

This is my 2nd favourite of Atwood's and I've come to like her writing style which makes smooth reading.

Update (Mar-08):- Have sent out the book via surface mail (due to cost) this morning. Sorry if it will take a longer time to reach you, Neuilli.

Journal Entry 17 by Neuilly from Brooklyn, New York USA on Friday, March 27, 2009
I got this book in the mail today, how exciting! I've been trying to read more of Margaret Atwood's writings. I've only read A Handmaid's Tale and loved the way she wrote. So thank you for this opportunity to read another of her works. I will start is tonight.

Journal Entry 18 by Neuilly from Brooklyn, New York USA on Thursday, May 7, 2009
I have completed this book and will be giving this to mmeclinton in the upcoming week.

Atwood has done a really amazing job of coming up with a plausible explanation of what may have transpired. Knowing how little facts were known, the pieces really seemed to come together in this. I really enjoyed the slow unfolding of events and all the information about that time that was woven into the end. I do admit, however, that I was rather disappointed with the end. The life of Dr. Jordon after his time visiting Grace seemed like a let down to me, and unnecessary - as well as even a bit absurd.

Journal Entry 19 by wingMmeClintonwing from South Berwick, Maine USA on Wednesday, May 13, 2009
I have just received this book from Neuilly who was the last on the ray. Once I read it, I'll happily look for another bookcrosser to keep it going!

Journal Entry 20 by wingMmeClintonwing from South Berwick, Maine USA on Monday, August 24, 2009
I did really enjoy reading this book even though I am still not sure of where the truth lies. It is fiction, of course, even if based on real events, and I think Atwood deliberately created a tale in her engaging style which leaves lots open for interpretation. I was of course intrigued by Grace, the main but not the only focus of the book. I think Simon Jordan was well drawn, and even if the ending may have seemed too pat as far as what happened to him, he was as interesting to me as Grace. I have the feeling that the characters are actually secondary to the mysterious workings of the human psyche, so it seems appropriate that the picture the book creates leaves very different impressions in readers. Atwood doesn't want us to have a pat answer. It wasn't really a whodunit book. The descriptions, from Ireland to the Atlantic crossing to the various stages of Grace's life in Canada are superb. I have had a request for this from a new friend bookcrosser in Italy and will be sending this off to her at the end of the week. As an individual book, it has had quite a journey already!

Journal Entry 21 by wingMmeClintonwing at South Berwick, Maine USA on Monday, August 24, 2009

Released 12 yrs ago (8/28/2009 UTC) at South Berwick, Maine USA

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Am sending this off to Hayes13 in Italy! Happy reading!

Journal Entry 22 by Hayes13 from Roma, Lazio Italy on Saturday, September 12, 2009
It arrived this morning... Thank you, thank you, thank you.

I will try to read it before the end of 2027!

Journal Entry 23 by Hayes13 from Roma, Lazio Italy on Monday, December 14, 2009
Finally re-reading this. Just as fabulous the second time. I love Atwood's language and imagery.

Thank you again for sending this on to me, MmeClinton.

Hope your holidays are happy and fine!

Journal Entry 24 by Hayes13 from Roma, Lazio Italy on Sunday, December 20, 2009
This will be a ring, here in Italy.

Departure time: After the holidays

Order subject to change based on need, location, phases of the moon...

Link to Italian forum page

Hayes13
deborahck
ladyofbabylon
MartinaViola

who's next?

tilly77
alassante
gahan

Journal Entry 25 by Hayes13 at -- via posta o passaggio a mano --, Lombardia Italy on Monday, January 18, 2010

Released 12 yrs ago (1/19/2010 UTC) at -- via posta o passaggio a mano --, Lombardia Italy

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Atwood retells a story that appeared in the Canadian Newspapers in 1843. A man and his housekeeper are murdered by the maid (Grace Marks) and the handyman. Dr. Simon Jordon, a proto-psychiatrist, has been engaged to get to the bottom of the story, of which Grace has no memory. We learn of the events as Dr. Jordon does, listening to Grace's testimony.

It would be a fairly boring story, were it not for the plot twists, some of which were introduced by Atwood and some of which were already present in the events, and for the author's prose, which is as always splendid.

Ultimately, I found the ending unsatisfactory, but as the true-life ending was also unsatisfactory this did not bother me. I enjoyed it very much.

- - - - - - - - - - - -

pp 82-83 (Dr. Jordan at a social occasion):
...In her turn she presents Simon (Jordan) to Dr. Jerome DuPont, of New York, who is visiting just now, and who has promised to give a demonstration of his remarkable powers. He is well known, says Mrs. Quennell, and has stayed with Royalty in England. Or not exactly Royalty; but aristocratic families, all the same.

"Remarkable powers?" says Simon politely. He would like to know what they are.... Spiritualism is the craze of the idle classes, the women especially; they gather in darkened rooms and play at table-tilting... or they emit voluminous automatic writings, dictated to them by Mozart or Shakespeare; in which case being dead, thinks Simon, has a remarkably debilitating effect on one's prose style.


Off to Saronno.

xxH

Journal Entry 26 by deborahck from Saronno, Lombardia Italy on Wednesday, January 20, 2010
I've actually already read this, years ago when I was at school and we read the Handmaiden's Tale in class, and I wanted to read more by the same author. It was so long ago I'd completely forgotten the story and the ending, and it rewoke my fascination with the author's writing.

Sent today to LadyofBabylon, Como!

Journal Entry 27 by Ladyofbabylon from Como, Lombardia Italy on Friday, February 5, 2010
Received today!

Journal Entry 28 by Ladyofbabylon from Como, Lombardia Italy on Thursday, April 15, 2010
It was my first Margaret Atwood's and i found it very interesting from the historical point of view. In particular, it has been very interesting to me to read about the psychiatric notions of the 19th century: it seems incredible how much we have learned about that in less than two centuries (i think for example to all the fictions about behavioral analysis). I liked Grace's character and i think she has been described as a very wise woman, despite her "ignorance". The Atwood's Grace seems to be incapable to kill and i wonder if it was the same for the historical Grace... The description of her life was very sad and, for this reason, i have really appreciated the end of the novel. I enjoyed also the side stories, as for example that of Doctor Simon Jordan and his mother: the letters from the old woman to the landlady of his son are very funny!
Thanks to the ring master for this ring.

Sent today to MartinaViola.

P. S. What a wonderful life is having this copy of the book!

Journal Entry 29 by MartinaViola from Latina, Lazio Italy on Saturday, April 17, 2010
The book has just arrived! :D

Journal Entry 30 by deborahck from Saronno, Lombardia Italy on Friday, April 30, 2010
Great book, even the second (third?) time round.

Journal Entry 31 by tilly77 at Cesena, Emilia Romagna Italy on Friday, December 10, 2010
it's here, thanks!

Journal Entry 32 by MartinaViola at Latina, Lazio Italy on Saturday, December 11, 2010
I have finished reading this book a few days ago but I still go on thinking about the mistery of Grace's memory. I think that it's not simple to deal with such a subject: there's always the risk to appear trivial or superstitious, but Margaret Atwood is a great writer and the result is a work of superb storytelling with a touch of poetry and an extraordinary language.

I have already read "the blind assassin", which I couldn't appreciate completely maybe because I was not ready to read such a book in english; then I read "the handmaid's tale" and I simply loved it, even if I found it very upsetting. I followed Offred and her fears to lose the memory of her family as I've followed Grace and her doubts about what had happened.
Now I can tell that Margaret Atwood is one of my favourite writers, for sure!
What I like most about her books is that she obviously have some themes (like memory, for example) which she likes to develope but you never know in which way she's going to put them in her story! You can find yourself reading a sci-fi book or an historical one but the pleasure is still the same! Chapeau, Margaret!

Thank you to the bookcrosser who offer this great read, I'm sorry it took me so long to read it...
Happy Reading! :))

Journal Entry 33 by tilly77 at Cesena, Emilia Romagna Italy on Sunday, July 3, 2011
I love Margaret Atwood and this novel confirms me that she is a natural born storyteller.
The multifaceted and elusive portrait of Grace is polished with admirable skill.

Sorry it took me so long, I am sending the book to alassante soon!

Journal Entry 34 by tilly77 at -- via posta o passaggio a mano --, Emilia Romagna Italy on Friday, July 8, 2011

Released 10 yrs ago (7/8/2011 UTC) at -- via posta o passaggio a mano --, Emilia Romagna Italy

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I am sending the book to alassante today!

Journal Entry 35 by alassante at Palermo, Sicilia Italy on Tuesday, July 19, 2011
book is here, thank you very much!

Journal Entry 36 by alassante at Palermo, Sicilia Italy on Thursday, December 1, 2011
I have finished reading this book some time ago, but then life went a bit mad (as it does, sometimes ;))
I apologize for keeping the book with me for such an unecessary extra time, but now I am ready to have a little walk to the post office with it :)

Many thanks to Hayes for making this book available for a bookring in Italy. I truly enjoyed it, especially since I didn't really know what to expect -I didn't even know it was inspired by a true story. I had read 'The Handmaid's Tale' before, loved it and wished to read more by Atwood, but that was all. I even avoided reading the previous journal entries, and I have to say this total unawareness added a plus to the ambiguity and uncertain atmosphere of the novel, which harmonizes perfectly with the realistic and detailed description of the life of a woman towards the end of 1800.

Journal Entry 37 by alassante at By mail, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Saturday, January 7, 2012

Released 10 yrs ago (1/7/2012 UTC) at By mail, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

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sent by mail on Thursday.
I preferred to wait for the holidays to be over, and the book is now travelling again :)

Thanks for sharing it with me!

Journal Entry 38 by Gahan at Ziano Piacentino, Emilia Romagna Italy on Monday, January 9, 2012
The book is here. Unfortunately it will have to wait for a while because I have to finish two other bookrings.

Journal Entry 39 by Gahan at Ziano Piacentino, Emilia Romagna Italy on Monday, September 16, 2013
When I started to read this book it was really a bad time for me, I could not get involved into the story, and left it unfinished. It was more than one year ago, and yet I do not feel I want to start it all over again.
It's time for it to resume its journey.

Journal Entry 40 by Gahan at Ziano Piacentino, Emilia Romagna Italy on Friday, November 8, 2013
The book is now traveling as part of this swap:
http://forum.bookcrossing-italy.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=25986&p=544621#p544621

Journal Entry 41 by MartinaViola at Latina, Lazio Italy on Monday, November 18, 2013
The book has just arrived, and it's the same copy I have already read!

I loved this novel so I'm sending it to a reader who I hope will appreciate it.

:)

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