The Waves

The Waves

Book - 1978 | 1st HarvestHBJ ed
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An innovative work of modernist fiction ahead of its time, Virginia Woolf's The Waves traces the lives of a group of friends against the backdrop of the sea.

Set on the coast of England against the vivid background of the sea, The Waves introduces six characters--three men and three women--who are grappling with the death of a beloved friend, Percival. Instead of describing their outward expressions of grief, Virginia Woolf draws her characters from the inside, revealing their, inner lives: their aspirations, their triumphs and regrets, their awareness of unity and isolation.
Publisher: New York : Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1978, c1931
Edition: 1st HarvestHBJ ed
ISBN: 9780156949606
0156949601
Branch Call Number: x
Characteristics: 297 p. : 20 cm

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Mentioned in "Art Objects" by Jeanette Winterson


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jaybarksdale Nov 17, 2012

My first VW novel. By page 20 I didn't think I could make it, but by page 40 it had coagulated enough. By page 60 I couldn't put it down, so to speak. Beautiful beautiful book.

acidflux Oct 03, 2012

This is probably Virginia Woolf's least accessible book. It's not one I'd normally recommend for my patrons at the library unless they really love Virginia Woolf's writing, or they love Shakespeare. The soliloquy nature in the way the six characters speak can make for a daunting read if you are looking for straightforward narrative.

I wouldn't rank it with her best, but I applaud the experimental nature. The way the characters personality and story slowly move over you, you come to accept the writing as normal and it eventually feels like you aren't reading six separate people, but one communal feeling. This is helped by their thoughts and recollections of the Percival character. Although he isn't one of the main six characters, you get to know him very well.

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