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The Swan Thieves is a novel by American author Elizabeth Kostova. The ” old painter” described in the book before the first chapter is Alfred Sisley. The Swan Thieves: A Novel [Elizabeth Kostova] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Psychiatrist Andrew Marlow, devoted to his profession. Psychiatrist Andrew Marlow, devoted to his profession and the painting hobby he loves, has a solitary but ordered life. When renowned painter Robert Oliver.

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Oliver’s inexplicable behavior, which includes poring over a stolen cache of old letters written in French, triggers what I can only call a rampant countertransference response in Marlow, whose overwhelming obsession becomes a strange and frequently far-fetched journey of discovery as he persists to the point of trespass and invasion.

Why is Robert Oliver obsessed with this woman? It’s pages long. I had read “The Historian” and had to force myself to finish that. Threads collapsed expanded unthreaded.

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The Swan Thieves by Elizabeth Kostova | Book review | Books | The Guardian

Amazon Renewed Refurbished products with a warranty. Worse, all the characters share a level of pretentiousness that makes the reader want to slap them silly: Alexa Actionable Analytics for the Web. Her elizabeht descriptions of artwork are luscious Can you tell me who is in the scene at the very end?

The Swan Thieves succeeds both in its echoes of The Historian and as it maps new territory for elizabbeth canny and successful writer. I loved the author’s prose though, really powerful and creative.


Oliver, to learn what he can about the patient. How many times and in how many ways do we need to know that Olivier is old?

Aug 21, Adriane rated it it was ok.

The Swan Thieves by Elizabeth Kostova

I would quote it here eoizabeth reviewers are requested to not quote from the reader copies He goes to great lengths to paint her, learn about her, etc. View Full Version of PW. He has it all: I’ve listened to enough that I can participate in the discussion, and giive it a thumbs down.

Loading comments… Trouble loading? With the whiz bang opening, I had some hopes that this would be like A. Andrew Marlow’s journey to discover the secrets behind his patient’s obstinate silence in order to help him recover. And so I just didn’t like him or feel any sympathy for his condition.

The Swan Thieves: A Novel: Elizabeth Kostova: : Books

I knew the other characters, This was, in a word, disappointing. AmazonGlobal Ship Orders Internationally. There is much, much more going on in this interwoven tale of two different time periods, spanning countries.

This apparently frustrates a lot of people, but it’s what made the book so appealing to me. The Swan Thieves is fascinating and culturally informative Sunday 30 December I am usually a bigger fan of sparse writing that gets a little more to the point, mixed with good dialogue to break the monotony of exposition and description.

I highly recommend this book for anyone who enjoys great modern literature, painting, and history. A very disappointing second book from Ms.


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I do wonder if male readers have sensed the same shadow, found the voice of Dr. But the problem with creating a character that is hard to relate to is that he is hard to relate to. What a gynormous waste!!! In fact, the letters become so hopeless as a device for carrying the plot that Kostova abandons them in favor of actual elizabeeth person narration.

One is with her husband’s uncle. This could have been thievse fixed, of course, by writing the entire book in the third person. Unfortunately this book didn’t live up to expectations. Then there is the artist whose wife and kids are afterthoughts to his own needs and wants.

I found the characters to be completely loved by the author, yet I could not find a place in my heart for them.

tbieves I was genuinely interested in all the characters and their stories, and just like in The Historian, Kostova used her powerful descriptive ability to bring things to life – rather than the Eastern European cities that popped out of The Historian’s pages, The Swan Thieves is full of descriptions of paintings and sketches that don’t need any visual illustration for me to picture them in my mind.