The Woman Who Waited

Andreï Makine Geoffrey Strachan

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The Woman Who Waited

The Woman Who Waited A moving utterly captivating love story Romeo and Juliet as if told by Chekhov or Dostoevsky In the remote Russian village of Mirnoje a woman waits as she has waited for almost three decades for th

  • Title: The Woman Who Waited
  • Author: Andreï Makine Geoffrey Strachan
  • ISBN: null
  • Page: 272
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • A moving, utterly captivating love story Romeo and Juliet as if told by Chekhov or Dostoevsky In the remote Russian village of Mirnoje a woman waits, as she has waited for almost three decades, for the man she loves to return Near the end of World War II, 19 year old Boris Koptek leaves the village to join the Russian army, swearing to the 16 year old love of his life,A moving, utterly captivating love story Romeo and Juliet as if told by Chekhov or Dostoevsky In the remote Russian village of Mirnoje a woman waits, as she has waited for almost three decades, for the man she loves to return Near the end of World War II, 19 year old Boris Koptek leaves the village to join the Russian army, swearing to the 16 year old love of his life, Vera, that as soon as he returns they will marry Young Boris, who with his engineering battalion fights his way almost to Berlin, is reported killed in action crossing the Spree River But Vera refuses to believe he is dead, and each day, all these years later, faithfully awaits his return Then one day the narrator arrives in the village, a 26 year old native of Leningrad who is fascinated by both the still beautiful woman and her exemplary story, and little by little falls madly in love with her But how can he compete with a ghost that will not die Beautifully, delicately, but always powerfully told, Andre Makine delineates in masterly prose the movements and madness that constitute the dance of pure love.

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      Posted by:Andreï Makine Geoffrey Strachan
      Published :2018-011-24T16:42:59+00:00

    One thought on “The Woman Who Waited

    1. Elizabeth (Alaska) on said:

      I can't do better in describing this book than the GR description. But the better he thinks understands her the more she surprises him, and the more he gains uncomfortable insights into himself.When I finished, I needed to know whether the village of Mirnoe is a real place. Indeed, it is, and its name in Russian means "peaceful." Makine set his story well - he makes multiple references to the quiet of this village almost ignored by the passage of time. It becomes a character of the story, with i [...]

    2. Friederike Knabe on said:

      "A woman, so intensely destined for happiness refusing instead to love" characterizes Vera. She's a mysterious, strikingly attractive woman who captures the mind and heart of the young nameless narrator of this delicate, reflective love story that enchants the reader. Since age sixteen, Vera has been waiting faithfully for three decades for her soldier fiancé to return, living alone in an isolated northern Siberian village close to the White Sea. Andrei Makine is a master in exploring character [...]

    3. Corinne on said:

      It's unfortunate that this book was such a poor fit for me (isn't that cover absolutely gorgeous?). The premise seemed so interesting - a woman in a tiny village in Russia has been waiting for her soldier to return from WWII for 30 years. A much younger man (our narrator who never tells us his name) goes to live in the village, to meet her, learn about her story and to write an article about the culture and customs left among the old widows there. You get a taste of modernish Russian history (60 [...]

    4. Galina on said:

      Макин явно има склонност да запраща героите си отвъд пределите на познатата ни цивилизация, за да изстиска от тях чувства и характеристики, които иначе няма как да бъдат проявени. В "Жената, която чакаше" историята се отличава с проста фабула - млад журналист, който едноврем [...]

    5. Helen on said:

      Someone described this book - "you can read it in a lunch hour but it will stay with you for a lifetime". I'd need a longer lunch than I currently get but it was quite a short book at 180 pages. The images that this book created will definately linger. Wonderful dreamy, atmospheric novel set in a Russian village where only old women survive after the war. A young man arrives in this village intending to stay for a short while only but becomes obsessed with the local teacher, the woman in the tit [...]

    6. Mark on said:

      This short novel creates one of the most evocative women characters I have encountered in a long time. But the key to the book is the story's narration by a 26-year-old self-styled Russian dissident, who becomes captivated by the woman and who reacts to her in a way that is uttery faithful to his age and immaturity. In the end, she surprises him, humbles him and makes their encounter utterly memorable.When the narrator leaves his dissolute artists' community in Leningrad to spend time in Siberia [...]

    7. Jared Blum on said:

      A German co-worker who always likes to discuss European literature and issues recommended that I read Makine, a Russian émigré to France, who writes in French. This was the only book of his stocked by my local public library. This novel, really more of a novella, was a quick read that probably only took me a couple hours. I spent time in Russia in the '90s and so I found the setting of Leningrad and surrounding countryside in the 1970s intriguing. The gist is that a 16-year old girl sends her [...]

    8. Ilyhana Kennedy on said:

      Ah, the pleasure of reading a work that is so beautifully written. This is an elegant book skilfully crafted and credit must surely be due to the translator as well as the author.Yes, it's easy to predict how the woman Vera will behave, but I doubt that that's the point. The story is not so much about the woman, but about what goes on in the mind and being of the young man who is telling the story. And on reflection, I cannot recall his name and wonder if it was actually given.Set against the de [...]

    9. Julie on said:

      A word portrait of a woman in a small town in northern Russia who makes certain choices after hearing her teenage love is killed in the last days of WWII. Like his other books, then facts aren’t all that you think they are, and you have to rethink your notion of what is true. I didn’t really understand the narrator and his motives all that well, which I why I didn't rate it higher.

    10. Nina on said:

      Типичен руски стил, описателен, красив, наляга те мъка Авторът разказва за срещата си с една жена, която тридесет години чака годеника си, заминал на война. Изящен език, прелестни природни картини. Книгата ми беше носталгична, героите - горди и с едно вече почти изчезнало дос [...]

    11. Czarny Pies on said:

      Ce roman nous rappelle qu'il y a deux sortes de victimes de la guerre; à-savoir ceux qui meurent et les survivants qui ne peuvent que faire le deuil.

    12. Nicoleta on said:

      Trivia:Alexandra Kollontai, prima femeie ministru, prima femeie ambasador, care considera sexul o nevoie naturală(propunea niște cabine pe stradă unde oameni necunoscuți să-și rezolve nevoia) a fost părăsită de soț pentru o femeie mai tânără și a suferit pentru asta. Holm în norvegiană înseamnă insulă, dar în rusă colină(atunci când veneau vikingii pământul era inundat și ei vedeau o insulă ceea ce rușii știau că e doar colină).

    13. Siv30 on said:

      התלבטתי רבות באשר לכתיבה על הספר "האישה שחיכתה". לא התלהבתי מהספר וחשבתי שהוא לא מהודק כמ שצריך ב- 159 עמ` שהוא כולל.מלכתחילה, הספר קומם אותי כי באיצטלה של רומאן ומבלי אפילו לנסות ולקשור בין שני חלקי העלילה, כרבע מהספר משמש מנוף למסירת דעותיו הפוליטיות של מאקין, נגד המהלכים של המ [...]

    14. Diane Ramirez on said:

      This was written beautifully but had an ugly story. How uncomfortable to look down on, laugh at, the absolutist narrator, who kept trying and failing to know the world around him, especially the woman in the title, and then *bam* realize how like him I am. I kept thinking: what an awful person, placing others into his own (always wrong) easy tropes, assuming their inner thoughts, their motivations, "knowing" and even dreading their next move. I found his this tension relevant on a number of leve [...]

    15. O.R. Melling on said:

      I can't remember the last time I envied a writer his or her skill, but every sentence of this book is a work of art. The Russian author, exquisitely translated from original French, claims that literature is about "how" not "what." I don't agree with this theory - I'd prefer not to read a beautiful corpus, all dressed up and with nothing to say - but that's irrelevant here as the "what" of his work is as wonderful as the how. I cared about his characters, about Russia's personal history, and mos [...]

    16. Rosetta Allan on said:

      An absolutely beautifully written story that carried me through at it's own pace, not mine, made me slow my steps and look around, though there was in fact so very little actually happening.

    17. George Thomas on said:

      I have read many of Makine’s novels and it is obvious from his beautiful descriptive passages especially describing the countryside, and his characters that he is following in the tradition of the great Russian authors steeped in what is known as “the Russian Soul”. This term has been used in literature to describe Russian spirituality and the writings of many Russian writers such as Gogol, Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky offer descriptions of the Russian soul.The Russian word "душа" (dushá), [...]

    18. Tamene on said:

      This is a Siberian author's French novel translated into English. One would expect some clumsiness but this is masterfully and poetically told. Perfection. The aching beauty and deep religious silences of this unsettling landscape reflect the anguish of war and communism on small Russian communities. Humanity's fears, desires and questioning encapsulated in poignant descriptions of chopping wood, rowing boats and fording frozen streams. In case you haven't guessed, I loved this. I will read all [...]

    19. LeeW Adams on said:

      If ever there was a 'Vera' in your life this book will move you.

    20. Amandine on said:

      4,5 étoiles. Lorsque j’ai choisi ce titre d’Andreï Makine avec Métaphore pour notre lecture commune mensuelle, je ne m’attendais pas à être aussi agréablement surprise : j’avais gardé un souvenir flou de La musique d’une vie et peu d’envie de découvrir le reste de l’œuvre de cet auteur. Je ne me suis heureusement pas obstinée dans cette attitude et ai été charmée par cette Femme qui attendait.Le style tout particulièrement m’a semblé plus travaillé et mieux déplo [...]

    21. Marcel Uhrin on said:

      Útla knižka o láske ale aj o ťažkostiach života niekde na severe sovietskej Sibíri. Trochu aj o vojne ale hlavne o milujúcej žene, ktorá trpezlivo čaká na svojho muža, aby splnila sľub, daný koncom vojny vo veľmi mladom veku. O žene, ktorá v tom neznesiteľnom čakaní, počas ktorého starne obklopená ešte staršími ženami (lebo však muži vo vojne vymreli), odoláva mladému umelcovi. Ten, unavený búrlivým ale zároveň bezvýchodiskovým životom umeleckých disident [...]

    22. Kerry on said:

      Vera, the woman of the title of this book, is akin to Charlotte, the grandmother from Dreams of My Russian Summers: a woman no longer youthful, living in the fog of the past, "on hold" and clinging to memories that make the days tick by like a metronome. However, Vera's tale is different in that the narrator is a man when he meets her, and her story is reflected in the way he pieces it together from information that he gathers from other people, his observations, and his reading of her psycholog [...]

    23. Sherry Evans on said:

      From Publishers WeeklyA sensuously styled, elegiac tale set in the mid-1970s, Makine's latest opens a window onto a generation of post-WWII Russian widows through one mysterious woman's vigil. In the village of Mirnoe on the northern White Sea coast, a young male journalist researching local customs meets an intriguing woman who has waited 30 years for her fiancé, reported killed, to return from the war. Just 16 when her lover was conscripted, Vera devotes herself selflessly to the care of the [...]

    24. Jessica on said:

      The Woman Who Waited takes place in a remote Russian village that has been all but abandoned in the years following WWII. With all the men having gone off to war and the younger people having long ago fled for better lives, the town is made up almost exclusively of elderly women - and one younger one who has stayed to look after them. The tale is that her sweetheart swore he would come back for her, and that she's still waiting for him to come back - thirty years later. A young man half her age [...]

    25. metaphor on said:

      In reality, it all happened differently The minute-by-minute reconstruction, the timed storyline of that night of cowardice was put together much later, in those moments of painful honesty when we meet our own gaze, one more pitiless than either the scorn of others or the judgement of heaven. This gaze aims straight and shoots to kill [] In reality, that is all there was: fear, the icy logs against my chest, the endless wait a few steps away from the shaft of light as it sliced up the muddy path [...]

    26. Kris McCracken on said:

      A lovely little novel in which our narrator constantly ties himself in knots trying to understand a woman (Vera) he meets in a small town in the remote north of the Soviet Union. An 'intellectual' and 'artist' - albeit with enough self-awareness to know his own absurdity - his observation turns into an obsession to know the unknowable.Makine writes very well, and this is another book that is rich in symbolism and the author uses the natural and isolated beauty of the north well. The central feat [...]

    27. Elisa on said:

      Vera [La Femme qui attendait] on venäläis-ranskalaisen kirjailijan järjestyksessä seitsemäs suomennettu teos, jonka jälkeen on ilmeisesti suomennettu vielä kolme. Juuri tämän tahdoin lukea kiinnostavalta kuulostavan juonen ja slaavilais-nostalgiseksi kehutun tunnelman takia, enkä lainkaan pettynyt. Kirjassa eletään 70-luvun puoliväliä ja Vienanmeren rannalla sijaitsevan pienen kylän ilmapiiri on kiireetön ja kaihoisa. Teos on nopealukuinen siinä mielessä, että se on kooltaan l [...]

    28. Patricia Bracewell on said:

      Makai's language is beautiful. Some of that praise must, I think, go to the translator, from the French.This is an interior story, told from the perspective of a young man of 26 who is self-centered, smug and totally clueless about the realities of life and death. It is told as a memoir, so we have the reflective narrator looking back at his youthful self with the advantage of hindsight. Nothing much happens, but the setting and the characters are portrayed in such gorgeous language that the rea [...]

    29. Juliana Es on said:

      Started reading in 2013, finished reading in January 2014.Why so slow? Reading any Andrei Makine's work is like enjoying a full four-course meal; you don't rush it to enjoy the taste. The same goes here, especially with such a novel as this one where it has less dialogue but more descriptive parts.This novel is not nearly as enjoyable as Le Testament Francais, or Music of A Life (which is not even a fair comparison since the latter is a shorter novel). However if you are into Andrei Makine, then [...]

    30. Juan Hidalgo on said:

      Un libro peculiar que retrata muy bien una región rural de la URSS en los años 70, a medio camino entre el fin del stalinismo y la cercana caída del comunismo (cuando éste aún no se adivinaba).El autor consigue impregnar su historia del romanticismo y la poesía que eran propias de algunos escritores de principios del siglo pasado, en un relato amoroso que termina con un final inesperado para cada uno de sus dos protagonistas principales, y que también muestra claramente las elucubraciones [...]

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