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We see with stunning emotional exactitude how ordinary women discover unimagined reserves of strength, even as their humanity is chipped away. Three Strong Women admits us to an immigrant experience rarely if ever examined in fiction, but even more into the depths of the suffering heart. She was only eighteen when her first work was published. In she was… More about Marie NDiaye. A major work of world literature.


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NDiaye is a rare novelist, whose arrival in America is long overdue. A writer of the highest caliber. There is good and evil here, and as in the world they are blended confusingly and only slowly revealed. In the interplay between Europe and Africa, between men and women, NDiaye finds both beauty and beast.

Three Strong Women

A multifaceted glimpse of lives too rarely seen in print. With spare prose and evocative imagery. A novel that examines bravely and from both sides the collision of Europe and Africa. Its three heroines have an unassailable sense of their own self-worth, while their psychological battles have an almost mythic resonance. The prose compels with astonishing range and precision.

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NDiaye dissects her characters with impressive forensic detail, the subtlest speech inflection or gesture put under the microscope. The language has an hypnotic emotional intensity. The power the stories reveal is that of self-knowledge, self-belief and endurance. Proust and Faulkner conversing under African skies. Velvety prose, wise and precise—a frighteningly just, real, dignified, and poignant vision of suffering humanity. Riveting, hypnotizing prose. That is the word that would suffice to summarize the genius of this work. Join Reader Rewards and earn your way to a free book!

Join Reader Rewards and earn points when you purchase this book from your favorite retailer. Read An Excerpt. You are inside of someone's head as they reflect on where they are, what they have done, and what is happening to them as a result. You really feel that for a short time you are in someone else's skin. One person found this helpful. The links between the 3 stories are not that obvious, I wasn't even sure who the strong woman was in the second tale. Yes I know there is such misery in the world as the lot of the last heroine, but I am sorry, I do not want to read about it, just too depressing.

I did like the first story though, and the way she made you wonder about who saw life as it really was, who was being honest?. This book was an interesting read when each section is considered individually. However, aside from mentioning a common relative's name throughout, there is no connection between each section. Wasn't particularly enjoyable, but I felt I had to finish it to see what the connection was between the three stories.

The book left unanswered questions but I'd say it would be a good topic for discussion at a book club. The author has a very lengthy and descriptive style of phrasing a sentence or a paragraph. The story lines moved from character to character.

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Sometimes hard to follow. Overall, I enjoyed the book. Took me to another world.

Three Strong Women

Complicated, interesting characters worth getting to know. I didn't want the stories to end. Wanted more to understand the women who quietly and powerfully change their worlds. I did not like this book. Perhaps there was a problem with the translation. See all 47 reviews. Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers.

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