The Blue Flower by Penelope Fitzgerald audiobook

The Blue Flower

By Penelope Fitzgerald
Introduction by Candia McWilliam
Read by Derek Perkins

Blackstone Publishing 9780544359451
6.43 Hours Unabridged
Format: Digital Download (In Stock)
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    ISBN: 9781483099545

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    ISBN: 9781483099576

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    ISBN: 9781483099569

The Blue Flower is set in the age of Goethe, in the small towns and great universities of late eighteenth-century Germany. It tells the true story of Friedrich von Hardenberg, a passionate, impetuous student of philosophy who will later gain fame as the romantic poet Novalis. Fritz seeks his father's permission to wed his "heart's heart," his "spirit's guide"—a plain, simple child named Sophie von Kühn. It is an attachment that shocks his family and friends. Their brilliant young Fritz, betrothed to a twelve-year-old dullard? How can this be? The irrationality of love, the transfiguration of the commonplace, the clarity of purpose that comes with knowing one's own fate—these are the themes of this beguiling novel, themes treated with a mix of wit, grace, and mischievous humor.

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Summary

Summary

The Blue Flower is set in the age of Goethe, in the small towns and great universities of late eighteenth-century Germany. It tells the true story of Friedrich von Hardenberg, a passionate, impetuous student of philosophy who will later gain fame as the romantic poet Novalis. Fritz seeks his father's permission to wed his "heart's heart," his "spirit's guide"—a plain, simple child named Sophie von Kühn. It is an attachment that shocks his family and friends. Their brilliant young Fritz, betrothed to a twelve-year-old dullard? How can this be?

The irrationality of love, the transfiguration of the commonplace, the clarity of purpose that comes with knowing one's own fate—these are the themes of this beguiling novel, themes treated with a mix of wit, grace, and mischievous humor.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Set in provincial Saxony in the 1790s, this is, on the face of it, Ms. Fitzgerald’s most recondite and challenging book. It is also her greatest triumph…luminous and authentic…An interrogation of life, love, purpose, experience, and horizons.” New York Times
“Fitzgerald presents a brilliant, subtly ironic portrayal of Friedrich von Hardenberg (aka Novalis) as an anti-Pygmalion who takes an unformed, all-too-human girl and fires her into an image of chaste muse…History aside, this is a smart novel. Fitzgerald is alternately witty and poignant, especially in her portrayal of the intelligent, capable women who are too often taken for granted by the oblivious poets. Fitzgerald has created an alternately biting and touching exploration of the nature of Romanticism—capital ‘R’ and small.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Fitzgerald never repeats herself, and her latest novel…is her most original book yet…A little treasure; highly recommended.” Library Journal
“A historical novel that’s touching, funny, unflinchingly tragic, and at the same time uncompromising in its accuracy, learning, and detail: a book that brings its subject entirely alive, almost nothing seeming beyond its grasp.” Kirkus Reviews

Reviews

Reviews

by Bob12 9/13/2017
Overall Performance
Narration
Story

As if W. G. Sebald, Jane Austen, Barbara Pym and Emily Dickinson had collaborated

Hard to describe Penelope Fitzgerald's novels -- maybe especially this one about an episode in the life of the German Romantic poet known as Novalis. Witty and relishing people's absurdities yet at the same time delighting in their generous feelings and ideals (things that unfortunately can often lead to absurdities, given how the world goes on). If you say touching and funny, however, that leaves out unflinching and astringent. Also sad, beautiful and strange, qualities which are also there in some mysterious way...thus my attempt to create a collaboration. Unlike Marilynne Robinson, she is very fortunate in her narrators. This one is excellent, with just the right dryness for the narration and excellent shifts for the emotions revealed in dialogue. He does such a good job I finally caught the sense of things I missed after repeated readings. And she is someone to reread, always with new pleasure.

Author

Author Bio: Penelope Fitzgerald

Author Bio: Penelope Fitzgerald

Penelope Fitzgerald (1916–2000) was an English novelist, poet, essayist, and biographer who embarked on her literary career at the age of fifty-eight and later earned much popular and critical acclaim, winning a Booker Prize and a National Book Critics Circle Award.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Fiction/Historical
Runtime: 6.43
Audience: Adult
Language: English