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اثر مایکل فرین از انتشارات چترنگ - مترجم: کیهان بهمنی-برندگان جوایز ادبی

The sudden trace of a disturbing, forgotten aroma compels Stephen Wheatley to return to the site of a dimly remembered but troubling childhood summer in wartime London. As he pieces together his scattered memories, we are brought back to a quiet, suburban street where two boys—Keith and his sidekick, Stephen—are engaged in their own version of the war effort: spying on the neighbors, recording their movements, and ferreting out their secrets. But when Keith utters six shocking words, the boys game of espionage takes a sinister and unintended turn. Childhood and innocence, secrecy, lies and repressed violence are all gently laid bare as once again Michael Frayn.


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Well, its finally over. That slow, monotonous pace expressed by my a-level English class is now only to be repeated on the other side of the course with A Streetcar Named Desire.

I probably think more critically of this book as a result of the teacher who made us read this book with her, and consequently discovering a to-be-tested drinking game every time she says, now I find this part really chilling! and sexual awakening along with a multitude of other phrases such as, oh my days, babe! at which point I catch myself shuddering that this woman is to be teaching English of all things.

Rant over and explanation of my initial negative colouring of this novel, I found the story interesting, if not what I would normally read. The style of writing is by no means conventional, as is especially expressed within the last chapter which almost gives spoilers of who Stephen was and who he became, leaving more questions than answers. For that, I did quite enjoy the book - as did my three highlighters spent on covering the novel.

An interesting point of the novel was the presentation of the characters and then how Stephen perceived them after the reader had already come to their own conclusions. For instance, the reader develops a distinct dislike for the men of the Hayward men right from the start, but it takes Stephen really up until the bayonet incident to truly recognise how better off he is without having them as a blood relation.

Now, rather than give a rather patchy guide to an essay covering this novel, I’ve decided to not subject anyone who might possibly be reading this to my full analysis of ‘Spies’. So, if you are considering reading this, give it a go! I dare say that if you’ve marked it as a possibility then it is your sort of genre – in which case it is indeed a good read, so take a chance a buy it.

مشاهده لینک اصلی
This lovely, thoughtful book is like a dip in cool, clear water.
It revolves around a mystery which the narrator, now an old man, is trying to solve. What did he really know as a boy ? Who was leader, who follower? How could he not see? When did everything suddenly change?
It is World War II and everything is put on hold for the “Duration”. German Spies and Juice people the boys’ imagination.
The narrator and his best friend set out to investigate the suspicious actions of the best friend’s mother. Little by little they uncover a terrible secret. In the haze of things not said, they are unable or unwilling to understand its implications, leading to the tragedy that the old man now, slowly, methodically and obsessively, tries to grasp.
A thoughtful look at bravery and cowardice, memory and knowledge, guilt and innocence. And the difficulty of being a boy in wartime Britain. Beautifully written.


مشاهده لینک اصلی
Little boys are inherently curious; I know I was. I had a secret fort in the bushes across the street from my house where my brother and I made plans and spied on neighbors. This book brought me back to those days.

However, these two boys uncover a genuine mystery that moves the plot forward in leaps and bounds. The story overflows with suspenseful moments and the protagonists draws the reader in with his way of narrating his self defeating thoughts as he faces and crumbles in increasing tense moments.

This story is rich with symbolism and has nifty ending that ties it all together. It was engaging from the beginning to the end.

I read this book to explore it as an option for the IGCSE Literature Course I will be teaching next year. It definitely passed the test and Im excited to analyze it in more depth with my students in the coming year.

مشاهده لینک اصلی
I loved this book. It reminded me of the time in my life when I still craved an imaginary world but knew that I knew better. Stephen is a vulnerable boy, lacking in self confidence, easily led by anyone who befriends him. His fantasy world with Keith leads to the uncovering of a secret that has devastating consequences. Frayn tells us a poignant story, drawing us into Stephens troubled world and through his childish perspective into the adjacent adult world. Its a story that will stay with me for quite some time. Im also very excited to have discovered another author to read my way through.

مشاهده لینک اصلی
@Spies@ is a coming of age story, a mystery, a war novel, and a big leap into childhood from adolescence - and back. I cant say much more beacuse Im at a loss for words - and its all Michael Frayns fault. The guy is brilliant - and so is the book.

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