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Elizabeth Is Missing av Emma Healey
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Elizabeth Is Missing (2014)

av Emma Healey

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
1,6481377,721 (3.86)180
In this darkly riveting debut novel'a sophisticated psychological mystery that is also an heartbreakingly honest meditation on memory, identity, and aging'an elderly woman descending into dementia embarks on a desperate quest to find the best friend she believes has disappeared, and her search for the truth will go back decades and have shattering consequences. Maud, an aging grandmother, is slowly losing her memory'and her grip on everyday life. Yet she refuses to forget her best friend Elizabeth, whom she is convinced is missing and in terrible danger. But no one will listen to Maud'not her frustrated daughter, Helen, not her caretakers, not the police, and especially not Elizabeth's mercurial son, Peter. Armed with handwritten notes she leaves for herself and an overwhelming feeling that Elizabeth needs her help, Maud resolves to discover the truth and save her beloved friend. This singular obsession forms a cornerstone of Maud's rapidly dissolving present. But the clues she discovers seem only to lead her deeper into her past, to another unsolved disappearance: her sister, Sukey, who vanished shortly after World War II. As vivid memories of a tragedy that occurred more fifty years ago come flooding back, Maud discovers new momentum in her search for her friend. Could the mystery of Sukey's disappearance hold the key to finding Elizabeth'… (mer)
Medlem:daliagagne
Titel:Elizabeth Is Missing
Författare:Emma Healey
Info:Harper (2014), Hardcover, 320 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
Betyg:*****
Taggar:Ingen/inga

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engelska (126)  nederländska (4)  tyska (3)  franska (1)  norska (bokmål) (1)  lettiska (1)  katalanska (1)  Alla språk (137)
Visa 1-5 av 137 (nästa | visa alla)
Fascinating insight into the world of dementia and a great story to boot. ( )
  Timwindram | Feb 28, 2021 |
Emma Healey’s 2014 novel Elizabeth Is Missing is narrated by a woman determined to find out where has best friend, Elizabeth, has gotten to. But Maud, the narrator, cannot get anyone to take her concerns seriously because she suffers from a rapidly advancing case of dementia and her daughter, the police, the caretakers who visit her every day, and Elizabeth’s son are getting very tired of hearing the same old questions from her over and over again.

Talk about an unreliable narrator; Maud is the ultimate unreliable narrator. The elderly woman suffers from an advanced case of dementia, and she is losing more ground to that horrible condition every day. However, though Maud lives in a world inside her own head that is such a blending of the present with the past that she is in a constant state of confusion, she knows two things for certain: she can find neither her friend Elizabeth nor her own sister, Sukey. The problem is that Elizabeth is missing right now, but Sukey disappeared just a few months after World War II and hasn’t been seen since. Now, Maud cannot always be certain for which of the two women she is looking. Even so, she keeps looking for them even as what’s left of her dwindling cognitive abilities continues to slip away from her, and what she uncovers by forcing others to try to keep up with her turns out to be more than anyone bargained for, including Maud.

Elizabeth Is Missing would have been a good mystery even without its unusual narrator. The circumstances under which Sukey disappeared not long after her recent marriage to a man who seemed to be living just on the edge of the law has all the makings of a very good historical fiction mystery. But what really makes this novel stand out from the crowd is the way that Emma Healey allows the reader to live for a few hours inside the head of a dementia sufferer like Maud. We stumble along with Maud in the present as very little makes sense to her, as she begins to forget the names of common everyday items that she’s used all her life, and as every little thing she encounters reminds her of a vivid memory from her long ago past. In effect, Sukey’s part of the story is told in flashback fashion as Maud literally flashes back to her detailed memories of those days.

Bottom Line: Too many books are forgettable; after a few weeks or months, readers can barely distinguish them in their minds from all the other books they’ve read before or since. Elizabeth Is Missing is not one of those books. These days, as more and more people live to an advanced age, most every family has been, or soon will be, touched by the experience of having to provide care for a family member with dementia or Alzheimer’s. If you want to know what that family member is really experiencing, novels like this one are a good way to supplement your more clinical reading of the disease. Readers will not be forgetting this one. ( )
  SamSattler | Feb 24, 2021 |
Een wat warrig boek over een oudere vrouw met dementie, die zoekt naar haar vriendin Elizabeth. Verleden en heden lopen door elkaar; haar zus Sukey is kort na de tweede wereldoorlog vermist en blijkt uiteindelijk begraven te zijn in de tuin van Elizabeth.
De dementie en verwarring wordt goed beschreven maar dat maakt het verhaal soms onnavolgbaar. Dus de ontknoping is ook niet echt helder. ( )
  elsmvst | Nov 18, 2020 |
3.5 As an audio book, it was equally challenging and charming to be in the mind of the narrating character, Maud, who could easily be described as a generic "little old lady." But Maud is in the throes of Alzheimers or dementia and she constantly muddles the present (2000s) with the past (1946). In the present, Maud is convinced that her good friend Elizabeth is missing and has possibly come to harm. She can't remember seeing her, her house is locked up and in transition, and no one (her own daughter or Elizabeth's son) will tell her anything. But since we are in Maud's mind, that perception is not entirely correct and both her daughter Helen and Elizabeth's cranky son, Peter have repeatedly told Maud what has happened, but she just can't remember. She takes her worries to the police several times and takes out and advert in the paper, and tries to get into Elizabeth's house all in her quest to understand. What this obsession stems from is her own sister, Sukie who disappeared back in 1946. The mystery was never solved, and police were slow to act. Apparently in post-war England many people went missing as they backed out of hasty marriages, were uprooted by bombings, tried to reunite with loved ones in other European countries. I had no idea so much of one country was on the move, but it makes sense. Maud was only 15 when this occurred and Sukie who was 7 years older, and married just stopped coming around the family home. Both her husband Frank and the lodger Douglas are suspects, though more in Maud's mind than the actual investigation. Little things in the present send Maud careening back into the past and she gets stuck in loops about some of the tiny details she remembers (summer squash, her sister's perfume brand and lipstick color) There is also a mad woman character from the past, who could conceivably be Maud in present day. Excellent portrayal of the slipping memory -- what objects are called, who her daughter is, where she lives, and the nagging feeling she needs to remember. The mystery gets solved, though not entirely satisfactorily. ( )
  CarrieWuj | Oct 24, 2020 |
A fascinating and very convincing story of a dementia sufferer, Maud, who is slowly loosing her memory, but is convinced all is not right. The narrative by Maud, an unreliable witness, is well written, as you the reader experience her growing confusion, her notes, helping and hindering her solving the mystery. The story flips between the present and the past when she was growing up, causing you to pause wondering where you are.
The story gives good insight into the world of a dementia sufferer, with excellent observation of people, things, seasons with good descriptions. Often little clues are dropped that come together as the story progresses..
The author expertly portrays progressive memory loss and annoying interactions with her family.
A slow moving but enjoyable narrative.
( )
  GeoffSC | Jul 25, 2020 |
Visa 1-5 av 137 (nästa | visa alla)
It's a very good novel and highly impressive for a debut. It's a rare imagining of a character pushing 90 years of age who has either severe Alzheimer's or just everyday senility (we never quite know) ... this book is an interesting exercise in genre, comparable to Kate Atkinson's Case Histories, not quite crime, not quite literary fiction, a "hybrid" work.... There's a lot here to praise, admire and enjoy. But ultimately this is a novel for readers who love unreliable narrators instead of being infuriated by them.
tillagd av KayCliff | ändraThe Guardian, Viv Groskop (Jun 8, 2014)
 
Normally a well-observed, literary novel that accurately shows us ourselves by deepening our knowledge of what it is to be human cannot manage, as well, to be both a comedy and a thriller. Elizabeth is Missing, however, encompasses these genres and deserves prizes in all categories.... Not only have we several genres in the one novel, we have two main themes. How it feels to experience dementia, and a page-turner of a detective story. If I had to describe it in one word, it would be beautiful. It is a gripping thriller, but it's also about life and love: the love of an exasperated daughter for her mother; the love of sisters and of friends and the love I felt for Maud.
 
British author Emma Healey’s debut novel, Elizabeth is Missing, is an engaging and beautifully written description of a mystery-within-a mystery.... Elizabeth is Missing is hard to put down, and Maud is an utterly likeable narrator. The novel launched a rare and justified bidding war among publishers after 29-year-old Healey submitted sections of the book as her MA thesis, which was then nominated for an award that a literary agent judged. Publishers were captivated by Healey’s light touch and lively phrases, married to her heart-breaking and accurate portrayal of what it must be like to feel your mind slipping away....
 
The story eagerly tugs the reader from chapter to chapter, but the book succeeds more on the strength of its main character than the intrigues of its plot....But Healey resists turning her into a tragic figure, instead showcasing Maud’s pluck and wicked sense of humour. .... But by design, the reader cares. It’s vital to the reader – it’s the whole point. Like Ian McEwan’s Atonement, Elizabeth is Missing is a redeeming force for its main character, even if she’ll never know it.
 
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To my grandmothers,
Vera Healey and Nancy Rowand,
for inspiring this book.
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Prologue

Maud? Was I boring you so much that you'd rather stand outside in the dark?
Chapter 1

You know there was an old woman mugged around here?" Carla says, letting her long, black ponytail snake over one shoulder. "Well, actually, it was Weymouth, but it could have been here, So you see, you can't be too careful. They found her with half her face smashed in."
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In this darkly riveting debut novel'a sophisticated psychological mystery that is also an heartbreakingly honest meditation on memory, identity, and aging'an elderly woman descending into dementia embarks on a desperate quest to find the best friend she believes has disappeared, and her search for the truth will go back decades and have shattering consequences. Maud, an aging grandmother, is slowly losing her memory'and her grip on everyday life. Yet she refuses to forget her best friend Elizabeth, whom she is convinced is missing and in terrible danger. But no one will listen to Maud'not her frustrated daughter, Helen, not her caretakers, not the police, and especially not Elizabeth's mercurial son, Peter. Armed with handwritten notes she leaves for herself and an overwhelming feeling that Elizabeth needs her help, Maud resolves to discover the truth and save her beloved friend. This singular obsession forms a cornerstone of Maud's rapidly dissolving present. But the clues she discovers seem only to lead her deeper into her past, to another unsolved disappearance: her sister, Sukey, who vanished shortly after World War II. As vivid memories of a tragedy that occurred more fifty years ago come flooding back, Maud discovers new momentum in her search for her friend. Could the mystery of Sukey's disappearance hold the key to finding Elizabeth'

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