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Mnich PDF, ePub eBook


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Title: Mnich
Author: Matthew Lewis
Publisher: Published October 12th 2016 by Vesper (first published 1796)
ISBN: 9788377312469
Status : FREE Rating :
4.6 out of 5

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Mnich, młodzieńcze dziecko M.G. Lewisa, dziś nieco trąci myszką, ale wciąż potrafi przerażać, budzić emocje i rozpalać erotyczne fantazje, o czym świadczą pojawiające się co pewien czas adaptacje i przeróbki filmowe. Jak widać, koncept żądz rodzących się pod mniszymi habitami zachowuje swoją łechczywość, a opowieść o diabelskim pokuszeniu intryguje ponadczasową uniwersalno Mnich, młodzieńcze dziecko M.G. Lewisa, dziś nieco trąci myszką, ale wciąż potrafi przerażać, budzić emocje i rozpalać erotyczne fantazje, o czym świadczą pojawiające się co pewien czas adaptacje i przeróbki filmowe. Jak widać, koncept żądz rodzących się pod mniszymi habitami zachowuje swoją łechczywość, a opowieść o diabelskim pokuszeniu intryguje ponadczasową uniwersalnością. Czytajmy więc Mnicha jak chcemy, choćby i jako perwersyjną powieść erotyczną, ale jeśli powstydzimy się własnej ekscytacji, będzie to znaczyć, że podziałał, i to podwójnie: dotknął jakiejś prawdy o ludzkich pragnieniach, a zarazem o zahamowaniach, jakie narzuca im obłudna moralność. - z posłowia Macieja Płazy

30 review for Mnich

  1. 4 out of 5

    Bill Kerwin

    When I was younger, I avoided this book because the literary snob in me--a much more insistent voice back then than now--had decided, on the basis of ”informed opinion,” that “The Monk” was a calculated exercise in sensationalism, a device for producing horrific thrills through the deliberate, exploitative use of cheap effects and anti-Catholic stereotypes. Now that I have read it, I see that the literary snob in me had a point. “The Monk” is all of these things. But it is also more. I think the When I was younger, I avoided this book because the literary snob in me--a much more insistent voice back then than now--had decided, on the basis of ”informed opinion,” that “The Monk” was a calculated exercise in sensationalism, a device for producing horrific thrills through the deliberate, exploitative use of cheap effects and anti-Catholic stereotypes. Now that I have read it, I see that the literary snob in me had a point. “The Monk” is all of these things. But it is also more. I think the young Matthew Lewis liked Walpole and loved Radcliff, but believed that they both fell short of his own darker, revolutionary vision, particularly in regard to the supernatural, providence, and fate. For Lewis, the supernatural is neither an obvious intrusion of the symbolic into the actual, a providential and prophetic sign (Walpole) nor a mere objective correlative for the heroine's emotional state which--once it has served its sentimental purpose--can be explained away and summarily discarded (Radcliff). No, the supernatural for Lewis is an elusive, complex phenomenon, a dangerous disruption of the ordinary, which may be mocked by the rationalist or embraced by the gullible, which may at times be a mere legend (or a stratagem exploiting a legend), but could just as easily turn out to be real. And if real, it will be something horribly real--relentless and insistent at best, malevolent and destructive at worst, and only tangentially connected to providence. It is in his radical criticism of providence itself that Lewis differs most markedly from his influences. For Mrs. Radcliff (and Walpole, to a lesser extent) Providence is a benevolent but mischievous uncle who enjoys scaring the children before he rewards them with treats. But for Lewis, Providence is a capricious, unreliable overseer, capable of allowing the spotless innocent to be ravished and destroyed by the wicked. The fact that the wicked one later meets with a terrifying supernatural destruction never quite makes up for the great horror or the grave injustice of the initial violation. In addition, Lewis brings the dark side of Shakespeare plus the spirit of early German Romanticism and the recent French Revolution into the already familiar world of sentimental dialogue, medieval abbeys and Salvator Rosa landscapes, giving the gothic world a wider breadth and a greater force. (A final note: all lovers of Poe should read this novel. Just as "The Fall of the House of Usher" was inspired by "Otranto," so "The Pit and the Pendulum" was inspired by "The Monk." In both cases Poe surpasses his influences, but the comparisons are extremely interesting.)

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jeffrey Keeten

    ”Lucifer stood before him a second time. He borrowed the Seraph’s form to deceive Ambrosio. He appeared in all that ugliness, which since his fall from heaven had been his portion: His blasted limbs still bore marks of the Almighty’s thunder: A swarthy darkness spread itself over his gigantic form: His hands and feet were armed with long Talons: Fury glared in his eyes, which might have struck the bravest heart with terror: Over his huge shoulders waved two enormous sable wings; and his hair was ”Lucifer stood before him a second time. He borrowed the Seraph’s form to deceive Ambrosio. He appeared in all that ugliness, which since his fall from heaven had been his portion: His blasted limbs still bore marks of the Almighty’s thunder: A swarthy darkness spread itself over his gigantic form: His hands and feet were armed with long Talons: Fury glared in his eyes, which might have struck the bravest heart with terror: Over his huge shoulders waved two enormous sable wings; and his hair was supplied by living snakes, which twined themselves round his brows with frightful hissings. In one hand He held a roll of parchment, and in the other an iron pen. Still the lightning flashed around him, and the Thunder with repeated bursts, seemed to announce the dissolution of nature.” How does Ambrosio the most pious, the most venerated monk in all of Madrid find himself at this point bargaining with Lucifer for the tattered remains of his blackened soul? ”His Brother Monks, regarding him as a Superior Being...They were persuaded, that what He did must be right...His monastic seclusion had till now been in his favour, since it gave him no room for discovering his bad qualities. The superiority of his talents raised him too far above his Companions to permit his being jealous of them: His exemplary piety, persuasive eloquence, and pleasing manners had secured him universal Esteem, and consequently He had no injuries to revenge: His Ambition was justified by his acknowledged merit, and his pride considered as no more than proper confidence. He never saw, much less conversed with the other sex; He was ignorant of the pleasures in Woman’s power to bestow. Ambrosio had been left on the monastery doorstep “when he was too young to tell his tale”and had never known a moment of the world beyond those monastic walls. Because of these unique circumstances he had never been exposed to temptation, vice, sin or the charms of the female form. Now the upper class women did find his eloquence when he gave sermons so enticing that he quickly became the most popular monk for hearing confessions. Which I often thought that one of the bonuses of being a member of the cloth would be to hear all the juicy details of confession. Now don’t hold anything back young lady salvation is in the details. I digress. My point is that even with his sheltered upbringing he had a good idea what all those people were getting up to out there in the regular world, but he had an almost scientific detachment from the conception and the temptations of sin. The downfall of Ambrosio was just too tempting for Lucifer. He sends Rosario to the monastery to be Ambrosio’s assistance. Rosario keeps his face hidden under a cowl and makes himself indispensable to Ambrosio. After he has gained the trust of the monk he reveals himself to be a woman, a beautiful woman named Matilda. This was a HOLY SHIT moment for Ambrosio. Needless to say after much wringing of hands and grand speeches about his virtue being beyond reproach he finds out after all he is just a man. ”Dangerous Woman! said He; Into what an abyss of misery have you plunged me! Should your sex be discovered, my honour, nay my life, must pay for the pleasure of a few moments. Fool that I was, to trust myself to your seductions! What can now be done? How can my offence be expiated? What atonement can purchase the pardon of my crime? Wretched Matilda, you have destroyed my quiet for ever!” It really isn’t fair after all. I mean if Lucifer decided to send a beautiful being to any one of us with the intention of getting us to “fall from grace” we would all be doomed. Samuel Taylor Coleridge thought that the creation of Matilda was Lewis’s masterpiece. He said she was “exquisitely imagined” and “superior in wickedness to the most wicked of men." When I think about this book being published in 1796, in the infant stages of novel writing, by a young man of 19 and written in just ten weeks it is staggering to contemplate how wonderfully he developed the villains of this story. The writing is weak when it comes to characters representing the commendable people. They were cardboard cutouts just mere backdrops for the villains to ply their villainy upon. Ambrosio soon tires of the beautiful Matilda and turns his attentions to the seduction of Antonia a timid and innocent girl of 15. Matilda turns demon pimp and acquires magic to help Ambrosio feed his growing lust. Lewis builds the tension in this section as there are several moments when we feel that he is about to accomplish his task and something interferes. He knows it is not right to despoil this girl of her virtue, but he can not resist his own base urges. ”Every feature, look, and motion declares you formed to bless, and to be blessed yourself! Turn not on me those supplicating eyes: Consult your own charms; They will tell you, that I am proof against entreaty. Can I relinquish those limbs so white, so soft, so delicate; Thos swelling breasts, round, full, and elastic! These lips fraught with such inexhaustible sweetness? Can I relinquish these treasures, and leave them to another’s enjoyment? No, Antonia; never, never! I swear it by this kiss, and this! and this!” Of course this is not Ambrosio’s fault. It is the girl’s fault. ”Wretched Girl, you must stay here with me! Here amidst these lonely Tombs, these images of Death, these rotting loathsome corrupted bodies! Here shall you stay, and witness my sufferings; witness what it is to die in the horrors of despondency, and breathe the last groan in blasphemy and curses! And who am I to thank for this? What seduced me into crimes, whose bare remembrance makes me shudder? Fatal Witch! was it not they beauty? Have you not plunged my soul into infamy? Have you not made me a perjured Hypocrite, a Ravisher, an Assassin! Nay, at this moment, does not that angel look bid me despair of God’s forgiveness?" If she just wasn’t so damn beautiful he would have been fine. He would have let her keep her virtue and he would be back on the path to righteousness. Matthew Lewis Now Lewis does ramble around a bit. We follow the adventures of some noblemen trying to save their sister/fiance from being condemned to a convent because her parents made a promise to God. The Prioress turns out to be another great villain and capable of such diabolical vengeance that yet again Lewis made this reader uneasy. He also incorporates the Bleeding Nun into this section. ”WIth trembling apprehension I examined this midnight Visitor. God Almighty! It was the Bleeding Nun! Her face was still veiled. She lifted up her veil slowly. What sight presented itself to my startled eyes! I beheld before me an animated Corse. Her countenance was long and haggard; Her cheeks and lips were bloodless; The paleness of death was spread over her features, and here eye-balls fixed steadfastly upon me were lustreless and hollow.” And the Wandering Jew. ”He spoke in a commanding tone, and drew the sable band from his fore-head. In spite of his injunctions to the contrary, Curiosity would not suffer me to keep my eyes off his face; I raised them, and behold a burning Cross impressed upon his brow. For the horror with which this object inspired me I cannot account, but I never felt its equal! My senses left me for some moments; A mysterious dread overcame my courage, and had not the Exorciser caught my hand, I would Have fallen out of the Circle.” Wandering Jew by Dore Stephen King wrote an interesting introduction to this volume. He puts Walpole and Lewis in perspective with the emergence of this Gothic-Horror genre. ”If this new genre had an Elvis Presley, it was Walpole. Then came Matthew Lewis the genre’s first punk, the Johnny Rotten of the Gothic novel. The Monk was a black engine of sex and the supernatural that changed the genre--and the novel itself--forever.” Is that Johnny Rotten or is that Matthew Lewis? That sums up for me why when I was deciding between three stars and four stars I gave the push to four. Lewis published the first edition Anonymously, but then when it became a sensation he published the second edition under his own name and added M.P. to reflect his recently acquired seat in the House of Commons. Charges of “immorality” and “wild extravagances” started to be flung in his direction and “an injunction to restrain its sales was obtained”. Bowing to pressure he reworked and removed some of the more offensive passages. There is nothing like a little controversy to drum up book sales. Where Walpole and Radcliffe kept the true horror of their writing off screen Lewis audaciously grabs the reader’s hand and forces it into the maw of the gruesome. He writes vividly of the most horrible circumstances. He even came to the attention of Lord Byron. "Wonder-working Lewis, Monk or Bard, who fain wouldst make Parnassus a churchyard; Even Satan's self with thee might dread to dwell, And in thy skull discern a deeper hell." Ghosts, demons, burning crosses, diabolical evil, incest, murder, riots, rape, robbery, crypts, and demonic magic kept the pages turning. If he had put more flesh on the bones of the more honorable characters bringing them up to par with the ingenious descriptions of his villains this would have been a novel to contend with the very best. If you wish to see more of my most recent book and movie reviews, visit http://www.jeffreykeeten.com I also have a Facebook blogger page at:https://www.facebook.com/JeffreyKeeten

  3. 5 out of 5

    Petra X

    This is such a great fun book to read. It's really not like anything else at all, it's so extreme in every way. It was written in the era of the great classics, but this one is never going to be taught in schools. The book out-Gothics all the Gothic novels you ever read, Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey isn't even related to the raw perversion and criminality of this madcap horror ride through the forbidden where taboos fall one by one as the The Monk, unable to live up to his vows gives in to ever This is such a great fun book to read. It's really not like anything else at all, it's so extreme in every way. It was written in the era of the great classics, but this one is never going to be taught in schools. The book out-Gothics all the Gothic novels you ever read, Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey isn't even related to the raw perversion and criminality of this madcap horror ride through the forbidden where taboos fall one by one as the The Monk, unable to live up to his vows gives in to every deviant temptation. In him, every tenet of pure, celibate monastic existence becomes corrupted and evil. The Monk has everything - a cross-dressing seductive heroine, get thee to a nunnery oh you virgin (but not for long), sex, incest, rape, madness, torture, death, crypts, poison, magic, ghosts, bandits, vermin, the devil and the total moral and social degradation of all concerned. The author, who was only 20 at the time, let his fevered imagination run as wild as it wanted and then whipped it on a bit further. The most perverted and extreme taboos were just eccentricities to be worked into the characters and plot. What makes the book so outstanding, and why it has never been out of print in the over 200 years since it was first published, is that it is written with great intelligence and insight into people's psyches by an extremely talented author. And, unlike some classics, it isn't in the least bit boring. But seriously, no one is ever going to be asked to write a book report in school for it. I might have though. If I'd know about the book I would have done it as 'summer reading'. Those reports had to be read out to the class. That would have enlivened things a bit. It's free here. It says it's a romance. I wouldn't really call it that! Edited for some egregious typos, bad grammar and triple-redundant words, mostly 'mad'.

  4. 4 out of 5

    °°°·.°·..·°¯°·._.· ʜᴇʟᴇɴ Ροζουλί Εωσφόρος ·._.·°¯°·.·° .·°°° ★·.·´¯`·.·★ Ⓥⓔⓡⓝⓤⓢ Ⓟⓞⓡⓣⓘⓣⓞⓡ Ⓐⓡⓒⓐⓝⓤⓢ Ταμετούρο Αμ

    LOSING MY RELIGION Αυτό το "γοτθικό" κλασικό βιβλίο με οδήγησε στην Ισπανία του μεσαίωνα σε ένα κλίμα δεισιδαιμονίας θρησκευτικής αποχαύνωσης και διαστροφής. Τοποθετημένο σε ένα μεσαιωνικό μοναστήρι με έναν χαρισματικά και αγγελικά διεστραμμένο καλόγερο που μαγεύει τα πλήθη, αρχίζει να περιπλέκεται μια υπόθεση σκοτεινή και μακάβρια με ιστορίες, γεγονότα και αφηγήσεις να γεννιούνται συνεχώς μέσα απο άλλες ιστορίες και να περιπλέκονται με εξαιρετική μαεστρία και σπονδυλωτή πλοκή. Απλοί θεοφοβούμεν LOSING MY RELIGION Αυτό το "γοτθικό" κλασικό βιβλίο με οδήγησε στην Ισπανία του μεσαίωνα σε ένα κλίμα δεισιδαιμονίας θρησκευτικής αποχαύνωσης και διαστροφής. Τοποθετημένο σε ένα μεσαιωνικό μοναστήρι με έναν χαρισματικά και αγγελικά διεστραμμένο καλόγερο που μαγεύει τα πλήθη, αρχίζει να περιπλέκεται μια υπόθεση σκοτεινή και μακάβρια με ιστορίες, γεγονότα και αφηγήσεις να γεννιούνται συνεχώς μέσα απο άλλες ιστορίες και να περιπλέκονται με εξαιρετική μαεστρία και σπονδυλωτή πλοκή. Απλοί θεοφοβούμενοι άνθρωποι- ιππότες- κληρονόμοι πλουσιων οικογενειών με τίτλους και διακρίσεις-ιερά εξέταση-καλόγριες-Εωσφόρος-παρθένες-μαγισσες-αμαρτίες-έρωτες-κρυφοί-πόθοι ανομολόγητοι- πάθη κολασμένα- όλη η νομοτέλεια της ανθρώπινης και της θεϊκής φύσης πρωταγωνιστούν με συμβολικό τροπο σε αυτό το εμβληματικό και επαναστατικό μυθιστόρημα. Φυσικά βασικό πρωταγωνιστικό ρόλο έχει ο έρωτας σε ολες του τις μορφές και τις εκφάνσεις. Αλλα και τίποτα απο ολα τα αλλα που εξιστορούνται-και γίνονται με την δεινότητα και το πάθος που εξελίσσεται στην φαντασία μας-δεν ειναι όπως φαίνεται... Εξαίσια περιγραφικό, τέλεια μεταφρασμένο δεν μπορείς εύκολα να το εντάξεις σε κάποια κατηγορία είδους βιβλίου. Ανατρεπτικό,σαρωτικό,χωρις εξωραϊσμούς και διακρίσεις,ένα μαύρο παραμύθι με εκπληκτική μυθοπλασία και τρομερό ρεαλισμό. Ηθικό δίδαγμα: κάθε μορφή φανατισμού και αρρωστημένης πίστης ειναι μια σοβαρή ασθένεια που πλήττει θανάσιμα την ψυχή και τα χαρίσματα της ανθρώπινης ύπαρξης οδηγώντας τη σε διχασμό και ολοκληρωτική ανυπαρξία. Καλή ανάγνωση !! Πολλούς ασπασμούς!! * Παρακαλώ όσοι-ες απο εσάς έχουν διαβάσει παρόμοια βιβλία να με ενημερώσουν σχετικά. Θα σας ήμουν ευγνώμων. Ευχαριστώ.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Hannah Greendale

    Click here to watch a video review of this book on my BookTube channel, From Beginning to Bookend. Scandalous and scintillating, The Monk is a literary marvel.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Amalia Gavea

    ‘’I must have your soul; must have it mine, and mine forever.’’ This is one of the pioneers of Gothic Fiction, a work that defined one of the most fascinating, demanding and controversial genres. A novel written in the end of the 18th century that shocked the reading audience of its time with its last, darkness and violence. But what about the contemporary readers? Well, a few hundred years later and ‘’The Monk’’ still continues to attract us. My first experience with Lewis’ novel took place du ‘’I must have your soul; must have it mine, and mine forever.’’ This is one of the pioneers of Gothic Fiction, a work that defined one of the most fascinating, demanding and controversial genres. A novel written in the end of the 18th century that shocked the reading audience of its time with its last, darkness and violence. But what about the contemporary readers? Well, a few hundred years later and ‘’The Monk’’ still continues to attract us. My first experience with Lewis’ novel took place during my studies, in an exciting course called ‘’The Bible in English Literature’’. Since then, I’ve overlooked reading it and I don’t know why. This Christmas, an amazing colleague gave me a collector’s edition as a Christmas present. I think she knows me well. In Madrid, Ambrosio is a charismatic monk who dazzles the congregation with fiery sermons. A younger monk, Rosario, is his faithful shadow and confidante. However, Rosario is actually a young lady who has no other way to be close to him except disguising herself as a boy. Ambrosio discovers the truth and succumbs, because he is weak in spirit and in flesh. When his attentions turn to a young lady from a noble family, all Hell breaks loose. Literally, I assure you… ‘’The Monk’’ echoes Shakespeare and the Jacobite playwrights quite clearly. The cross-dressing, the scandalous love affairs, the ambivalent outcome, the extreme depiction of violence and punishment. The action is set in Spain, faithful to the stereotype which imagine the people of the Southern part of Europe as more vulnerable and governed by their passions, within a context that breaks apart the two institutions which are supposed to provide comfort and security. The Family and the Church. Dishonesty is common. ‘’Holy’’ men break their vows, noble sons try to trick virgins into their path, parents bargain their children away. It is a world far more terrifying than any satanic involvement could ever create and it is too real. Obsession leads to crimes and Lewis paints a dark portrait of a society that is corrupted to the core. Men and women blame God for their ‘’weak souls’’ while choosing a path that leads nowhere. The atmosphere is tangible with dark sensuality and violent lust and madness, as Lewis depicts a country and an era in all their attractive paranoia. We live in the time when violence and sex are always around, often used to shock but ending up being nothing. We aren’t easily shocked now, exposed to them from an outrageously young age through TV and video games. ‘’The Monk’’ may seem to us anything but shocking. Some may say that it stereotypically places the women in the archetypal roles of the Seductress or the Virgin. Yes, well, obviously! Take the story within its historical context and you’ll have the explanation. But wouldn’t this be too simplistic to consider? We love ‘’A Song of Ice and Fire’’ (most of us, at least….), we love Stephen King and Gothic Fiction has never been better both in Literature as well as in exceptional TV series like BBC’s ‘’Taboo’’. Violence, darkness and sexual implications don’t shock us, but dark stories of quality continue to fascinate us and will always do so. And by ‘’quality’’, I mean Literature, not mass-produced porn garbage...Darkness continues to rule many a life, forming a kind of obsession that may lead to horror and despair. This is why ‘’The Monk’’ still remains an iconic creation in the vastness of Literature. I would also wholeheartedly suggest the 2011 film version of the novel, starring Vincent Cassel at his best. My review can also be found on https://theopinionatedreaderblog.word...

  7. 4 out of 5

    Paul Bryant

    Calling all Gothic Novel fans : you have to read The Monk - this is the Texas Chainsaw Massacre of Gothic novels which will unjade the most jaded. Here you will find much fun to be had with nuns, priests with uncontrollable underwear, more nuns, pregnant nuns, nuns with minimal clothing, nuns giving birth in frankly unsanitory conditions attended only by untrained inappropriate monks, heaving bosoms, unspeakable acts, souls in the process of being damned for all eternity, mostly ghostly ectoplas Calling all Gothic Novel fans : you have to read The Monk - this is the Texas Chainsaw Massacre of Gothic novels which will unjade the most jaded. Here you will find much fun to be had with nuns, priests with uncontrollable underwear, more nuns, pregnant nuns, nuns with minimal clothing, nuns giving birth in frankly unsanitory conditions attended only by untrained inappropriate monks, heaving bosoms, unspeakable acts, souls in the process of being damned for all eternity, mostly ghostly ectoplasm, also big rats. The things that happen to people after they are dead in this book are more than happen to living people in some other books I have read. I remember well that as I perused this volume, those many years ago, my hair rose perpendicularly from my scalp and tingles spread across my nether regions.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Henry Avila

    Ambrosio, the abbot, is the perfect monk, head of an abbey in Madrid, and the idol of the city, a young, handsome, charismatic man, with a spellbinding voice, that thrills the congregation at his church. All the people flock to it, to hear his sermons, five minutes after the bells ring, the church is overflowing, and the noble families are there, silently the assembly listens, a living saint, they witness, the proud people are ecstatic, in this modern age (the 1700's), God has sent them Ambrosio Ambrosio, the abbot, is the perfect monk, head of an abbey in Madrid, and the idol of the city, a young, handsome, charismatic man, with a spellbinding voice, that thrills the congregation at his church. All the people flock to it, to hear his sermons, five minutes after the bells ring, the church is overflowing, and the noble families are there, silently the assembly listens, a living saint, they witness, the proud people are ecstatic, in this modern age (the 1700's), God has sent them Ambrosio! The Capuchin Friar (an order of independent Franciscans), the Monk, is not what he appears to be, everything, a mirage, the orphan, found at the door of the abbey, as an infant, raised in the monastery, never leaving its grounds, nobody knows where the child came from... Now evil thoughts permeates his curious mind, lust and debauchery, after thirty dull years, the Monk, wants to have some fun, the deadly boredom must end soon, risk his reputation, if only the abbot had a chance...Ambrosio is close to a novice by the name of Rosario, his only friend, who mysteriously arrived at the abbey, this young gentleman, always covers his face, keeps to himself, except for the abbot, their discussions are what the monk looks forward to, during the bleak daily ennui. But finally in the garden of the abbey, Rosario reveals to Ambrosio, he's a she, a woman called Matilda, of course , after a short hesitation, carnal knowledge commences, that "She" looks like the Madonna, doesn't hurt. The abbot soon shows lack of interest, a new, fresh conquest is needed, the very accommodating Rosario/Matilda , through witchcraft, helps him, try to violate another innocent woman... Midnight, at the cemetery, he hears the owls ominous shrieks, opens the gate, into the vast, dark, eerie underground vaults of the abbey's graveyard, jointly used by the nearby convent. Ambrosio slowly descends the forbidding stairs, his heart is pounding, a flickering lamp to show the many decaying bodies, unknown vermin creeping around the horrific scene, while the monks and nuns above, hold a sacred procession, viewed by the citizens of Madrid, he goes on, until he reaches the tomb of the supposedly dead, Antonia , the drugged girl, is still alive and waking up just now, she see him and thinks all will be safe, the Monk moves closer.......Later he hears the sound of footsteps approaching him, fiend, friend or enemy? The uneasy monk awaits in the gloom, is his destiny, death or life? ...Condemned when first published, in England, in 1796, and thus a bestseller, considered now, the Gothic classic novel, even though the twenty -year- old British author, uses Italian names in Spain, murder, incest, parricide, lascivious men and willing women (including an old maid). Religious bigotry, Black Magic, and some strange, creepy, and weird scenes, supernatural atmosphere too, graveyards, ghosts, demons, secret identities, and a hidden prisoner, held by, yes nuns. Everything that a reader, comes to expect and dread, hate and love, in this type of book, it's all there, not for everyone...Young Matthew Gregory Lewis, was an English M.P. during the bright daylight.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Bookdragon Sean

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Does character redemption exist in Lewis’s world? No, I think not. The vile protagonist degrades himself on every level. Here’s a list to show how messed up he is: 1. He lusts after his sister. 2. He becomes obsessed. 3. He tries to rape his sister. 4. He goes insane. 5. He tries to kill his sister. 6. He yields his soul to Satan. 7. The end He's just a little bit too creepy; he’s a complete sex pest with stalker like tendencies. This is incredibly Gothic, more so than most Gothic classics. But, is t Does character redemption exist in Lewis’s world? No, I think not. The vile protagonist degrades himself on every level. Here’s a list to show how messed up he is: 1. He lusts after his sister. 2. He becomes obsessed. 3. He tries to rape his sister. 4. He goes insane. 5. He tries to kill his sister. 6. He yields his soul to Satan. 7. The end He's just a little bit too creepy; he’s a complete sex pest with stalker like tendencies. This is incredibly Gothic, more so than most Gothic classics. But, is that necessarily a good thing? Certainly, it was enjoyable in parts, but, ultimately, it left me feeling rather dissatisfied. The power of seduction was running through this novel; the monk really had no chance of surviving it. He would have had to have an iron will to face the powers that were exerted on him. Even the most remote doubt in his beliefs could be exploited by Lucifer. The Monk has one major weakness, and that’s women. So, Lucifer sends the most perfect women, for the Monk, to corrupt him and apply directly to his one vulnerability. I never felt like there was any chance in hell of Ambrosio resisting the charms; it wasn’t like he was divided or displayed a struggle of resistance, he simply fell over his heels in made obsessive love. There were no two ways about it. He had no chance. He was doomed from the first page. At times, it felt like it was over before it began. It was blatant that the Monk’s indulgence would lead to a cycle of moral degradation. He was obviously going to be defeated by the devil and end up in some form of hell. I just didn’t need to read it to know how it was going to play out. The sexual elements were also a little bit sordid. What I mean is, it was blatant and in your face. It lacked all the subtlety of Dracula and the brilliance of Stoker’s metaphorical actions. I think this was merely written to shock its readership. Obviously, at the time such lust in books was rare and surprising especially on such a fantastical sexual level. The Monk lusts after his own sister, albeit unknowingly, but it was like it was added to just to enhance the seducing power of evil. There was lust for the sake of lust, incest for the sake of incest, and sexual imagery for the sake of sexual imagery. I didn’t take a lot from it. And it was one big inglorious headache. It took me a while to get over the disjointed style of the prose, the frequent shifts in narrator and the similar sounding characters. I would have been lost without a plot summary, and a breakdown of the characters. It all felt rather difficult to follow. Now I know what you’re thinking- isn’t that a problem with me personally rather than the novel? Well, yes, I suppose it is. But, this book was a struggle. There was something about it that put me off from the very beginning. And it only got worse. This is a classic that I really don’t like.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Λίνα Θωμάρεη

    Readathon 2017 22/26: Ένα βιβλίο που εκδόθηκε πριν το 1850 Πραγματικά ακόμα και τώρα, 1,5 μέρα μετά, δεν ξέρω τι και πως θα το κρίνω. Σίγουρα αυτά που θα πω θα είναι πολύ λίγα και φτωχά με σχέση τα αισθήματα που μου έβγαλε αυτό το βιβλίο. Ο Matthew Lewis σε αυτό το αριστούργημα (διότι για αυτό πρόκειται) μας ξετυλίγει την αχαλίνωτη φαντασία του και μας ταξιδεύει στην Ισπανία των Ιπποτών και των Τίτλων και τον Καθολικών με τα πρέπει και τα μη. Μας ταξιδεύει σε δεισιδαιμονίες, θρύλους και σε παγιδευμ Readathon 2017 22/26: Ένα βιβλίο που εκδόθηκε πριν το 1850 Πραγματικά ακόμα και τώρα, 1,5 μέρα μετά, δεν ξέρω τι και πως θα το κρίνω. Σίγουρα αυτά που θα πω θα είναι πολύ λίγα και φτωχά με σχέση τα αισθήματα που μου έβγαλε αυτό το βιβλίο. Ο Matthew Lewis σε αυτό το αριστούργημα (διότι για αυτό πρόκειται) μας ξετυλίγει την αχαλίνωτη φαντασία του και μας ταξιδεύει στην Ισπανία των Ιπποτών και των Τίτλων και τον Καθολικών με τα πρέπει και τα μη. Μας ταξιδεύει σε δεισιδαιμονίες, θρύλους και σε παγιδευμένες ψυχές που αναζητούν λύτρωση. Μας μιλάει για την αμαρτία τόσο της ψυχής όσο και του σώματος. Το πόσο ένας αγνός σεβάσμιος άνθρωπος με ένα υπέρτατο εγωισμό και περηφάνια καταντάει ένας τιποτένιος αμαρτωλός θολωμένος με μια σαρωτική μανία που φτάνει τα όρια της παράνοιας. Μας μιλάει και για τον έρωτα. Τον έρωτα τον ανεκπλήρωτο και τον έρωτα που αντέχει στο χρόνο, στο πόνο, στα θέλω των άλλων. Αυτό το βιβλίο τείνει να είναι η αρχή των πάντων και στις σελίδες του καταλαβαίνεις ποιοι και σε ποια σημεία έχουν επηρεαστεί από την γραφή του. Όπως στις σελίδες του καταλαβαίνεις και από που έχει επηρεαστεί και ο ίδιος. Αυτό το πολύπλευρο μυθιστόρημα αν μπορούσα να το κατηγοριοποίησω θα το έκανα ως ένα δυνατό βιβλίο τρόμου, όσο και θρίλερ, όσο και περιπέτειας, όσο και αστυνομικό, όσο και Φαντασίας, όσο και κοινωνικό, όσο και ρομαντικό. 5 αστέρια είναι λίγα τόσα λίγα....

  11. 5 out of 5

    Orsodimondo

    VENDERE L’ANIMA Il primo film tratto da questo romanzo è una produzione italo-franco-tedesca del 1972, sceneggiatura firmata dallo spagnolo Luis Buñuel e dal francese Jean-Claude Carrière, regia del greco Adonis Kyrou, con Franco Nero nella parte del monaco Ambrosio e Nathalie Delon in quella di Matilda. Muoio dalla voglia di vederlo. Matilda mi sazia di godimento fino al disgusto, mi attira a forza nelle sue braccia, fa il verso alla sgualdrina e si vanta della sua prostituzione. Matthew Gregory L VENDERE L’ANIMA Il primo film tratto da questo romanzo è una produzione italo-franco-tedesca del 1972, sceneggiatura firmata dallo spagnolo Luis Buñuel e dal francese Jean-Claude Carrière, regia del greco Adonis Kyrou, con Franco Nero nella parte del monaco Ambrosio e Nathalie Delon in quella di Matilda. Muoio dalla voglia di vederlo. Matilda mi sazia di godimento fino al disgusto, mi attira a forza nelle sue braccia, fa il verso alla sgualdrina e si vanta della sua prostituzione. Matthew Gregory Lewis aveva vent’anni quando scrisse questo romanzo, il suo più celebre, ventuno quando fu pubblicato: un’età che ritengo abbia contribuito alla sua voglia di scandalizzare e stupire - man mano che si va vanti con le pagine incontriamo religiosi fornicatori, incesto, magia, demonio, inquisizione, omicidio, tortura, stupro, eccetera. Ancora il film del 1972: Franco Nero con Eliana de Santis che interpreta Antonia: Ambrosio la sequestra, la droga, la violenta, la uccide, e in punto di morte scopre che era sua sorella. Il libro ebbe subito gran successo, anche di critica (Coleridge! Più avanti anche il marchese de Sade rivelò la sua ammirazione), ma l’anno dopo fu ritirato dalla vendita perché considerato troppo spinto. Allora, Lewis sfrondò il romanzo degli aspetti più osé, ma lasciò la maggior parte di quelli spaventosi e lo ripubblicò come seconda edizione. Nel 1990 uscì un nuovo adattamento cinematografico, produzione anglo-spagnola diretta dallo spagnolo Francisco Lara Polop, Paul McGann è il monaco e Sophie Ward è Matilda. La storia si svolge a Madrid ai tempi dell’Inquisizione. Ambrosio è un giovane monaco cappuccino, bello, rispettato e stimato, il confessore più richiesto della capitale spagnola: il romanzo racconta la sua caduta agli inferi. Nel senso più letterale del termine, perché sarà il diavolo in persona a ucciderlo spingendolo giù da un dirupo dopo avergli rivelato che gli ha venduto l’anima per nulla, dio lo avrebbe perdonato nella sua infinita misericordia, e il tribunale lo avrebbe graziato. Pura diabolica perfidia luciferina, un signor demonio, non c’è che dire. I piaceri dell’Inquisizione spagnola nel film del 1990. Prima di finire nelle fiamme dell’inferno, Ambrosio s’innamora del suo giovane discepolo Rosario, che si scopre essere una discepola, anche carina, che più avanti si scopre essere incarnazione del diavolo. Perché costei, di nome Matilda (proprio come il futuro romanzo di Mary Shelley), fa di tutto per corrompere Ambrosio: lo avvicina fingendosi uomo, entra nelle sue grazie, gli si rivela, lo conquista, lo possiede e si lascia possedere, lo spinge e aiuta a fare il male (sequestro, stupro, omicidio, eccetera). Il diavolo a quell’epoca non vestiva ancora Prada, ma era già e sempre donna. Ciliegina sulla torta: Ambrosio è solito pregare in ginocchio davanti a un dipinto della madonna, che si scopre essere il ritratto di Matilda! Nel 2011 il terzo adattemento firmato Dominik Moll e interpretato da Vincent Cassel. In punto di morte Ambrosio scopre di aver ucciso sua madre, violentato e ucciso sua sorella. Tanto per gradire. Pur nella snellezza del testo, Lewis si concede digressioni, parentesi e percorsi secondari, durante i quali introduce l’Ebreo Errante e la Monica Sanguinante. In pratica una summa del romanzo gotico, una gemma della letteratura del terrore, un horror antesignano. Sempre “Le moine” di Dominik Moll con Vincent Cassel. Ma anche, i complessi rapporti fra la solitudine, la società e l’immaginazione, fra la liberazione interiore dell’individuo nei mondi della fantasia e la sua sottomissione esterna ai limiti della convenzione e della repressione. Essenzialmente, l’esplorazione dei rapporti tra l’individuo e il suo ambiente. (David Punter dixit, nel suo "Storia della letteratura del terrore"). Argomenti che probabilmente valsero a The Monk l’entusiasmo del movimento surrealista: Bréton e Artaud lo citarono spesso, sottolineandone il messaggio trasgressivo e la carica libertina. Luis Buñuel scrisse la sceneggiatura del primo adattamento cinematografico. Magari si deve proprio alla passione surrealista se il romanzo di Lewis è ancora noto e pubblicato. Chapeau. Matthew Gregory Lewis ritratto da Henry William Pickersgill, 1809.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kirstine

    “What? live to plunge myself in infamy? to become an agent of hell? to work the destruction in both you and myself?” Alright, this book is hilarious. However, there are a few spoilers in this review. If you think you’ll read The Monk someday (and you should, seriously), maybe come back to this another time. Or don’t, who knows, maybe it won’t be so bad? Maybe this is the best, most spoiler free review you’ll ever read in your life? (see, I’m tempting you, because it’s the theme of the book!). I’m “What? live to plunge myself in infamy? to become an agent of hell? to work the destruction in both you and myself?” Alright, this book is hilarious. However, there are a few spoilers in this review. If you think you’ll read The Monk someday (and you should, seriously), maybe come back to this another time. Or don’t, who knows, maybe it won’t be so bad? Maybe this is the best, most spoiler free review you’ll ever read in your life? (see, I’m tempting you, because it’s the theme of the book!). I’m serious though, there are spoilers. So it features Ambrosio, our “Bad Blood” monk, who at firsts seems a very devout believer and as though he’s generally a good person. This is a lie. Sure he gets “seduced” by his trusty novice sidekick Rosario, who turns out to be a woman named Matilda (and how’s a man supposed to resist that, I mean, she’s a WOMAN and PRETTY, get it together Ambrosio), but really his capacity for sin was there from the start, it was only, truly, a matter of time before he fell and in his vanity and stupidity forgot how to get back up. So the first sin is committed by sleeping with a dying Matilda! Of course, because she’s a woman, and not a helpless idiot, she doesn’t die and he, being a man, and a shitty one at that, tires of her, like, a week after they started doing the do. There are tears, but instead of shunning him and leaving the monastery to seek greener pastures she offers to help him seduce his new target, the pious, innocent Antonia (and really, Ambrosio, you maybe shouldn’t trust a woman who cheated death, but he’s not really that smart and kind of a coward). In between those two plotting on how to get into her pants, there’s another plot involving Don Lorenzo, who’s also in love with Antonia (popular gal, that innocence really attracts the men), and his friend Don Raymond who’s in love with Lorenzo’s sister, Agnes, who’s in a convent in the same city. A great detail is how the villains of the story almost all belong to the convent/monastery, God needs better representatives. There are many stories-within-the-story, one involving a ghost (really, one of the best parts of the story), one involving a band of robbers luring people into a house only to murder them and steal their money, but my personal favourite is Antonia’s aging aunt Leonella finding a young, handsome, gold digging man who agrees to marry her despite her unattractive features (that she’s completely oblivious to), but because of her wealth. You go, Leonella, you’re the true heroine of this story. The whole thing is just… a lot. I mean, someone gets torn a apart by an angry crowd, there are TWO kidnappings, someone gives birth to a baby IN A DUNGEON, someone gets raped and murdered in a freaking crypt, there’s torture, love-me-or-I-die romance, and then the Devil shows up to buy a few souls and fling someone off a cliff. There are so many hilarious moments and brilliant details (like Antionia’s mother, Elvira, copying out the bible by hand, leaving out the steamy bits, so Antonia will be safe in her complete and child-like innocence, because that always ends well), and it wasn’t overtly sexist, not more than I expected at least. The men were mostly useless without the women, so that makes up for it. For a book that was written in 10 weeks, by someone not yet 20, it is quite impressive. Other than the excellent plot(s), there is depth and serious consideration hidden in there, even some literary critique. It’s not merely frivolous entertainment, which only heightens the enjoyment. What a book, what an adventure, what a good time. I loved it, I loved it so much.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Apatt

    This was going to be part of my themed Halloween 2017 Reads, but I overestimated my reading speed (or lack thereof) and here we are in December. Just as well I suppose as The Monk: A Romance took me 48 days to read, mostly as an audiobook I was listening to in the bus on my two hours commutes to work. Ah, but those were vastly amusing bus journeys thanks to this outrageously fun, (unintentionally) silly book. The Monk is often described as a gothic novel, which is not inaccurate but to my mind, i This was going to be part of my themed Halloween 2017 Reads, but I overestimated my reading speed (or lack thereof) and here we are in December. Just as well I suppose as The Monk: A Romance took me 48 days to read, mostly as an audiobook I was listening to in the bus on my two hours commutes to work. Ah, but those were vastly amusing bus journeys thanks to this outrageously fun, (unintentionally) silly book. The Monk is often described as a gothic novel, which is not inaccurate but to my mind, it is a no holds barred supernatural occult horror novel. However, it was published in 1796, prior to the birth of horror as a genre of fiction. While the language is unavoidably dated, the plot feels like an occult horror novel from the 70s, something Dennis Wheatley could have written. The novel is set in Spain and is made up of two main plotlines that only intersect toward the end of the book. There is plotline about a poor girl called Agnes who is committed to a convent against her will by her overzealous mother. To makes matters worse after “taking the veil” she realizes that she is pregnant with her lover’s child, this caused the super cruel prioress to imprison her in a ratty dungeon. An actual scene from the book! The central story arc, however, is about the eponymous monk, called Ambrosio who is introduced to us at the beginning of the book as an extremely pious abbot, but by becomes a depraved sex maniac by the end of the book. Ambrosio’s downfall is caused by the seduction by the amazingly wicked Matilda, introduced to us disguised as a monk called Rosario. It turns out that Matilda is a Satanist and, using her wiles, manages to lead Ambrosio away from his religion and God. She also persuades him to avail himself of her black magic artifacts to have his way with have his ways with another beautiful girl called Antonia. I had no idea what to expect from The Monk, but I literally did not expect the Spanish Inquisition! Yes, the dreaded S.I. make an appearance in this book, their chief weapons are surprise and fear ...fear and surprise ... and ruthless efficiency... Anyway, besides the S.I., I also did not expect the book’s descent into a tale of rape, murder, torture and general mayhem. The first half of the narrative is a fairly restrained gothic tale of a monk losing his religion, an innocent girl imprisoned in a convent, and her friends’ efforts to liberate her. Suddenly ghosts, demons, and black magic things are all over the place. I found the book’s sudden shift in tone vastly amusing. However, this novel is not for the faint of heart, especially as the author is very unkind to beautiful innocent young ladies in this book. Most of Matthew Lewis’ female characters have no agency to speak of, with the obvious exception of the Satanic femme fatale Matilda, and Antonia’s brave mother. The dialogue tends to be longwinded and flowery, but I like it! I don’t really see how this book can be analyzed as a serious work of literature. It is more like an evil romp with little in the way of moral lessons or philosophy to impart, read it for a hoot I would say. But only if you like this sort of thing (hooty Satanic romps). Definitely recommended for Iron Maiden fans. Note: Audiobook read by James K. White for Librivox (free audiobooks). On the whole a pretty good narration, thank you. Quotes: “It was not so lovely from regularity of features as from sweetness and sensibility of Countenance. The several parts of her face considered separately, many of them were far from handsome; but when examined together, the whole was adorable.” “She was wise enough to hold her tongue. As this is the only instance known of a Woman's ever having done so, it was judged worthy to be recorded here.” “Suddenly deprived of pleasures, the use of which had made them an absolute want, the Monk felt this restraint severely. Naturally addicted to the gratification of the senses, in the full vigour of manhood, and heat of blood, He had suffered his temperament to acquire such ascendency that his lust was become madness.”

  14. 5 out of 5

    Eirini Proikaki

    Είχα την εντύπωση οτι ο Καλόγερος θα ήταν ένα βαρύ αργόσυρτο βιβλίο και για αρκετό καιρό δίσταζα να το διαβάσω.Ίσως να φταίει και λίγο το εξώφυλλο γι'αυτο.Φανταστείτε την έκπληξη μου όταν, παίρνοντας τελικά την απόφαση να το διαβάσω,βρέθηκα μπροστά σε ένα εξαιρετικά ευκολοδιάβαστο κείμενο που ,ειδικά στην αρχή που το σατιρικό του ύφος είναι έντονο,είχε και πλάκα.Στη συνέχεια γίνεται όλο και πιο σκοτεινό,όσο σκοτεινή είναι η ψυχή των φανατικών. Πολύ τολμηρό για την εποχή του με τόσες αναφορές στο Είχα την εντύπωση οτι ο Καλόγερος θα ήταν ένα βαρύ αργόσυρτο βιβλίο και για αρκετό καιρό δίσταζα να το διαβάσω.Ίσως να φταίει και λίγο το εξώφυλλο γι'αυτο.Φανταστείτε την έκπληξη μου όταν, παίρνοντας τελικά την απόφαση να το διαβάσω,βρέθηκα μπροστά σε ένα εξαιρετικά ευκολοδιάβαστο κείμενο που ,ειδικά στην αρχή που το σατιρικό του ύφος είναι έντονο,είχε και πλάκα.Στη συνέχεια γίνεται όλο και πιο σκοτεινό,όσο σκοτεινή είναι η ψυχή των φανατικών. Πολύ τολμηρό για την εποχή του με τόσες αναφορές στο σεξ και την περιγραφή του βιασμού ,όπως και με την επίθεση που ουσιαστικά κάνει στην υποκρισία των ανθρώπων της Εκκλησίας. Ένα πολύ ωραίο σκοτεινο και μακάβριο παραμύθι,γεμάτο φαντάσματα, θρύλους και ανθρώπινη κακία.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Nikoleta

    Προκλητικό, ιερόσυλο και βλάσφημο για την εποχή του βιβλίο (το αγαπώ), το οποίο γράφτηκε το 1796. Παρόλα αυτά, ο Καλόγερος καταφέρνει μέχρι και σήμερα να προκαλεί ανατριχίλες ή ακόμα και να σοκάρει τις μικρότερες ηλικίες αναγνωστών. Στις σελίδες του παρελαύνουν οι πάντες και τα πάντα! Ματωμένα φαντάσματα, μάγισσες, απαγωγές, βιασμοί, αποτρόπαιοι θάνατοι, διαφθορά, ο ίδιος ο σατανάς αυτοπροσώπως και στο κέντρο των πάντων ο συμβολισμός του προπατορικού αμαρτήματος και φυσικά ο μέγας πειρασμός. Ευτυ Προκλητικό, ιερόσυλο και βλάσφημο για την εποχή του βιβλίο (το αγαπώ), το οποίο γράφτηκε το 1796. Παρόλα αυτά, ο Καλόγερος καταφέρνει μέχρι και σήμερα να προκαλεί ανατριχίλες ή ακόμα και να σοκάρει τις μικρότερες ηλικίες αναγνωστών. Στις σελίδες του παρελαύνουν οι πάντες και τα πάντα! Ματωμένα φαντάσματα, μάγισσες, απαγωγές, βιασμοί, αποτρόπαιοι θάνατοι, διαφθορά, ο ίδιος ο σατανάς αυτοπροσώπως και στο κέντρο των πάντων ο συμβολισμός του προπατορικού αμαρτήματος και φυσικά ο μέγας πειρασμός. Ευτυχώς αυτό το βιβλίο δεν το ξεπέρασε, ούτε το άφησε πίσω ο αδίσταχτος χρόνος και η εποχή μας. Διαβάζεται αχόρταγα και ευχάριστα και στις ημέρες μας. Η γλώσσα δεν είναι καθόλου επιτηδευμένη, η αφήγηση απλή και η πλοκή όσο γρήγορη πρέπει, ενώ τα γυρίσματα της μπαίνουν όπου ακριβώς χρειάζεται, για να προκαλέσει τα κατάλληλα συναισθήματα κάθε φορά. Επιπλέον ευχάριστη έκπληξη για εμένα, αποτέλεσαν οι μπαλάντες, που συχνά πυκνά είτε διάβαζαν είτε απήγγειλαν οι ήρωες.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Dan Porter

    I think Wilkie Collins has spoiled me when it comes to this type of Victorian/Gothic/Thriller because it's so hard to match his writing and storytelling skills. That being said, I'll add that The Monk was a fun read. While it's clearly an attack on organized religion - the Catholic church in particular - a close reading makes it also clear that Lewis found a significant difference between organized religion and a personal relationship with a Supreme Being. While he provides several interesting t I think Wilkie Collins has spoiled me when it comes to this type of Victorian/Gothic/Thriller because it's so hard to match his writing and storytelling skills. That being said, I'll add that The Monk was a fun read. While it's clearly an attack on organized religion - the Catholic church in particular - a close reading makes it also clear that Lewis found a significant difference between organized religion and a personal relationship with a Supreme Being. While he provides several interesting twists, his inexperience - at age 19 - at storytelling is evident as he inserts seemingly innocuous scenes early for the purpose of explaining his twists later. That's as annoying in an 18th century book as it is in a current TV crime drama. It's also possible to tell when a twist is coming by the increase in his verbosity as he tries to build tension and suspense. His best twist is saved for last but is presented in such an "Oh, by the way" manner in his rush to finish the story that it loses most of its shock value. Despite these shortcomings, this is a good book for any fan of Gothic literature or for a stormy weekend curled up in your favorite reading spot.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Evripidis Gousiaris

    Στα τέλη του 18ου αιώνα, κάποιος 19χρονος έγραψε ένα μακροσκελές μαγικό ξόρκι με σκοπό να καθηλώσει και να ακινητοποιήσει τον οποιοδήποτε αναγνώστη. Ο 19χρονος είναι ο Matthew Lewis και το μακροσκελές μαγικό ξόρκι που ακινητοποιεί και κρατάει το βλέμμα καρφωμένο στις σελίδες του είναι φυσικά ο Καλόγερος! Ένα αριστουργηματικό γοτθικό μυθιστόρημα γεμάτο ανατριχιαστικές σκηνές όπου η πραγματικότητα και οι δεισιδαιμονίες γίνονται ένα, σκοτεινά μοναστήρια όπου το πάθος και η φιληδονία έχουν ηγετικό ρό Στα τέλη του 18ου αιώνα, κάποιος 19χρονος έγραψε ένα μακροσκελές μαγικό ξόρκι με σκοπό να καθηλώσει και να ακινητοποιήσει τον οποιοδήποτε αναγνώστη. Ο 19χρονος είναι ο Matthew Lewis και το μακροσκελές μαγικό ξόρκι που ακινητοποιεί και κρατάει το βλέμμα καρφωμένο στις σελίδες του είναι φυσικά ο Καλόγερος! Ένα αριστουργηματικό γοτθικό μυθιστόρημα γεμάτο ανατριχιαστικές σκηνές όπου η πραγματικότητα και οι δεισιδαιμονίες γίνονται ένα, σκοτεινά μοναστήρια όπου το πάθος και η φιληδονία έχουν ηγετικό ρόλο, και αμαρτωλές επιθυμίες που προσπαθούν να μολύνουν αθώες καρδιές. Καταστάσεις που προκαλούν θυμό, οργή, έκπληξη, αμηχανία, λύπη και συμπόνια, και φυσικά αυτές που σε κάνουν να ανατριχιάσεις. (Σε ένα σημείο έριξα μια γρήγορη και ανησυχητική ματιά τριγύρω μου για να ελέγξω μήπως ξέφυγε κάποιο πνεύμα από τις σελίδες του βιβλίου και βρίσκεται στο δωμάτιο.) Τέλος η καταπληκτική μετάφραση των εκδόσεων Gutenberg μετέφερε εξαιρετικά το γοτθικό κλίμα και έκανε εξίσου συναρπαστικά τα διάφορα ποιήματα και τραγούδια που υπήρχαν στην αφήγηση. Ένα απολαυστικό βιβλίο όπου θα αναστατώσει και θα δαιμονίσει κάθε αναγνώστη. Το προτείνω σε όλους :)

  18. 4 out of 5

    Cassandra Lê

    OMGGGGGGG.... I totally CANNOT believe that the author of this book was 19 YEARS OLD when he wrote this, and he wrote it under 10 WEEKS . This is a masterpiece!! A 18TH CENTURY GOTHIC GODDAMN MASTERPIECE!!! Seriously high school kids would have loved the hell out of this and seek to read more classics were they not confined to snoring tomes like... idk, A scarlet letter? (Sorry, Hawthorne I have never gotten used to you ). "The Monk" retells the stories of a monk who abandons his virtues to be OMGGGGGGG.... I totally CANNOT believe that the author of this book was 19 YEARS OLD when he wrote this, and he wrote it under 10 WEEKS . This is a masterpiece!! A 18TH CENTURY GOTHIC GODDAMN MASTERPIECE!!! Seriously high school kids would have loved the hell out of this and seek to read more classics were they not confined to snoring tomes like... idk, A scarlet letter? (Sorry, Hawthorne I have never gotten used to you ). "The Monk" retells the stories of a monk who abandons his virtues to become perfidious. So engulfed with lust and horror that he went at length to sell his soul for the devil and commit most heinous crimes. I was at first expected to read some long and boring stories about theology and rambling monologues, but this book turned out to have EVERYTHING that made a novel awesome : romance, poetry, murder, death, kidnapping, evil schemes, satire, social commentary, rape, incest, ghost, demons, poison, secret underground entrances, a devil that throw a guy off a cliff, and FUCKING great PLOT TWISTS! I was so blown away at the end that I nearly ripped my hair off and sunk into irretrievable euphoria. Lewis's novel, with anti-Catholic sentiments influenced by the French Revolution, was actually banned in England when it first published but that only instigated more people to read it, albeit illicitly. Well, who cannot help but being enchanted by Lewis? Even Edgar A. Poe cited him as an inspiration for his short story "The Pit and The Pendulum."

  19. 4 out of 5

    Vasilis Manias

    Εν έτει 1796, ένας συγγραφέας τολμάει να γράφει ευθαρσώς και επωνύμως για τα φαιδρά της Ρωμαιοκαθολικής (και όχι μόνο) Εκκλησίας, ενός σαθρού οικοδομήματος γεμάτο φαύλους καλόγερους, μοχθηρούς Ιεροεξεταστές, μνησίκακες μοναχές, ανθρώπους που μπροστά στα πάθη τους δε διστάζουν να υπογράψουν συμβόλαια με το Διάβολο (ναι, τόσο μπροστά), αλλά και για αθεράπευτους έρωτες, για την φανταχτερή λάμψη της νιότης αλλά και για το ανυπέρβλητο μεγαλείο της ανθρώπινης καρδιάς και ψυχής. Αναμφισβήτητα ο "Καλόγερ Εν έτει 1796, ένας συγγραφέας τολμάει να γράφει ευθαρσώς και επωνύμως για τα φαιδρά της Ρωμαιοκαθολικής (και όχι μόνο) Εκκλησίας, ενός σαθρού οικοδομήματος γεμάτο φαύλους καλόγερους, μοχθηρούς Ιεροεξεταστές, μνησίκακες μοναχές, ανθρώπους που μπροστά στα πάθη τους δε διστάζουν να υπογράψουν συμβόλαια με το Διάβολο (ναι, τόσο μπροστά), αλλά και για αθεράπευτους έρωτες, για την φανταχτερή λάμψη της νιότης αλλά και για το ανυπέρβλητο μεγαλείο της ανθρώπινης καρδιάς και ψυχής. Αναμφισβήτητα ο "Καλόγερος" είναι ένα βιβλίο που όποιος το διαβάσει, δεν πρόκειται να το λησμονήσει ποτέ και χίλια μπράβο στις εκδόσεις Gutenberg που διαρκώς εμπλουτίζουν τη σειρά Orbis Literae με τέτοια απίθανα έργα.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Христо Блажев

    Монахът може да има вечността, но избира да има всичко сега: http://knigolandia.info/book-review/m... След “Дракула” на Брам Стокър, която от миналата година се радва на постоянен читателски интерес (а около Хелоуин имаше и страхотен пик), видях колко смисъл има да се правят класически романи в достойно оформление – с въвеждащи предговори, с подробни бележки и разяснения. Тази възможност до голяма степен се дължи, че се “намерихме” със Слави Ганев, истински ерудит в областта на готическата литера Монахът може да има вечността, но избира да има всичко сега: http://knigolandia.info/book-review/m... След “Дракула” на Брам Стокър, която от миналата година се радва на постоянен читателски интерес (а около Хелоуин имаше и страхотен пик), видях колко смисъл има да се правят класически романи в достойно оформление – с въвеждащи предговори, с подробни бележки и разяснения. Тази възможност до голяма степен се дължи, че се “намерихме” със Слави Ганев, истински ерудит в областта на готическата литература, ненаситен читател и всеотдаен преводач – с Благой Иванов не можем да сме му по-благодарни за всичко, което направи и за “Дракула”, и за неизлизалата досега на български класика “Монахът” на Матю Грегъри Луис. Със сигурност не съм аз човекът, който може да опише в пълнота колко важен е този роман за световната литература, колко направления тръгват от него и колко велики автори се вдъхновяват от тази книга (ще спомена само Байрон, дьо Сад, Лъвкрафт, Кинг и По), но пък в началото на книгата има подробен увод, който описва подробно всички това. Deja Book http://knigolandia.info/book-review/m...

  21. 4 out of 5

    Cindy

    O Father Ambrosio, stop Monking around! This book was quite a surprise. Yes, there are all sorts of hypocritical Monk-y debauchery and lustful, euphemism-filled scenes. But there are also two romantic subplots that filled with action, swashbuckling heroes, damsels in distress and deceit. All three stories end up intertwining in unexpected ways. Did more people in olden times have prosopagnosia, or what? Why was it so damn easy to disguise yourself? I had all sorts of naughty fun reading even more f O Father Ambrosio, stop Monking around! This book was quite a surprise. Yes, there are all sorts of hypocritical Monk-y debauchery and lustful, euphemism-filled scenes. But there are also two romantic subplots that filled with action, swashbuckling heroes, damsels in distress and deceit. All three stories end up intertwining in unexpected ways. Did more people in olden times have prosopagnosia, or what? Why was it so damn easy to disguise yourself? I had all sorts of naughty fun reading even more filthiness between the lines of the book. I can see why it got Lewis renounced as MP. Naughty, naughty man. But thanks for giving us such a fun book! --------- I just wanted to update my review with a list of the cool words I found in The Monk: * probity: integrity and uprightness; honesty. * opprobrium: the disgrace or the reproach incurred by conduct considered outrageously shameful; infamy. * Mountebank: a person who sells quack medicines, as from a platform in public places, attracting and influencing an audience by tricks, storytelling, etc. * perfidy: deliberate breach of faith or trust; faithlessness; treachery: perfidy that goes unpunished. * iniquity: gross injustice or wickedness. * prolix: extended to great, unnecessary, or tedious length; long and wordy.

  22. 5 out of 5

    juan carlos

    LA OBRA QUE ATERRO A LOVECRAFT, HA LLEGADO A MIS LECTURAS DE ESTE AÑO: Me encanta terminar libros de terror en la madrugada, ayudan a darle atmósfera a la novela gótica. ¿Para qué leer el monje? 1. Por que es un referente idóneo de la novela gótica de terror, ya que nos plasma las costumbres y pensamientos de la sociedad en la edad media. Donde la religión, las supersticiones y los castigos inhumanos eran el pan de cada día. 2. En la trama no sólo encontramos pactos con el demonio y ritos de bruja LA OBRA QUE ATERRO A LOVECRAFT, HA LLEGADO A MIS LECTURAS DE ESTE AÑO: Me encanta terminar libros de terror en la madrugada, ayudan a darle atmósfera a la novela gótica. ¿Para qué leer el monje? 1. Por que es un referente idóneo de la novela gótica de terror, ya que nos plasma las costumbres y pensamientos de la sociedad en la edad media. Donde la religión, las supersticiones y los castigos inhumanos eran el pan de cada día. 2. En la trama no sólo encontramos pactos con el demonio y ritos de brujas, sino que además hay leyendas, asesinatos, y romances imposibles. El amor se puede llevar hasta la muerte. O ¿la muerte puede llevar al amor? 3. El personaje principal el monje Ambrosio, es un ser revolucionario dentro de la literatura de su época ya que cae en las tentaciones del lado oscuro y tiene un final bastante desalentador. Le puse 4 estrellas debido a que el desarrollo es demasiado lento y toda la parte media del libro esta enfocada en el romance de Ines y Raymundo. Además les recuerdo que es una obra escrita en otros tiempo, no crean que es un horror impresionante, es un terror que va en dosis cortas.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    This book has long been on my TBR but I really didn't know that much about it. I have to say I was completely hooked from the beginning. Yes, the language is dated and there are parts that are a bit tedious. I think better editing would have done wonders. There were some really good twists at the end that while I thought they were great I would have liked more backstory on them. There were a couple of very disturbing scenes (one rape scene in particular was just haunting). This is a must read fo This book has long been on my TBR but I really didn't know that much about it. I have to say I was completely hooked from the beginning. Yes, the language is dated and there are parts that are a bit tedious. I think better editing would have done wonders. There were some really good twists at the end that while I thought they were great I would have liked more backstory on them. There were a couple of very disturbing scenes (one rape scene in particular was just haunting). This is a must read for gothic-lit fans and I'm really glad I finally got to it.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Omaira

    5 estrellas porque se las ha ganado ¡Tengo tantas cosas que comentar de esta novela! Mi mente ahora mismo es un conjunto de pensamientos sugeridos, escasamente desarrollados. O digo en serio que ha sido una lectura muy intensa y que jamás, JAMÁS, leeré nada igual. No digo que sea uno de mis libros favoritos, pero es una novela que recomiendo a cualquier persona que ya tenga una trayectoria en la literatura gótica o, al menos, esté curtida de literatura del siglo XVIII-XIX. Para mi volver a la l 5 estrellas porque se las ha ganado ¡Tengo tantas cosas que comentar de esta novela! Mi mente ahora mismo es un conjunto de pensamientos sugeridos, escasamente desarrollados. O digo en serio que ha sido una lectura muy intensa y que jamás, JAMÁS, leeré nada igual. No digo que sea uno de mis libros favoritos, pero es una novela que recomiendo a cualquier persona que ya tenga una trayectoria en la literatura gótica o, al menos, esté curtida de literatura del siglo XVIII-XIX. Para mi volver a la literatura gótica con El monje ha sido una experiencia harto satisfactoria. Me he reencontrado con esa literatura que me enseño un camino y que me dio una identidad. Ha sido como volver al seno materno, a los brazos de la mismísima Ann Radcliffe, después de una guerra. Aprecio las cosas de otra manera, busco otros elementos, pero sigo amando la literatura gótica de la misma manera entusiasta y apasionada que en 2015, cuando comencé mis andaduras por estos tenebrosos senderos. El monje es una novela dividida en 3 partes donde prevalece la descripción al diálogo. Una novela con tres frentes: una monja marcada por la ignominia, una chiquilla recién llegada a Madrid con sus familiares y un monje alabado por todos, que es la mismísima encarnación de la pureza y castidad cristianas. En este contexto podríamos haber encontrado una novela bastante aburrida plagada de descripciones tediosas de la arquitectura madrileña o de la sociedad del siglo XVIII (algo que a mi me habría gustado ver, pero bueno, entiendo que no todo el mundo puede buscar este tipo de información). Sin embargo, es una novela muy narrativa donde prevalecen los hechos a la descripción del entorno. Distintas historias conectan unos personajes con otros de manera natural, ingeniosa e interesante. A veces sí que resultan ligeramente pesadas ciertas historias, sobre todo porque Lewis también introduce poesías y mitos para introducir al lector mucho más en los hechos narrados. Pero no es algo que en el conjunto sea de una importancia decisiva a la hora de disfrutar la lectura. Respecto a lo demás, la parte sobrenatural es seguramente lo que más he disfrutado junto al contenido explícito y violento de la historia. Lo diré una y mil veces: que esto fuera escrito en 1796 me parece revolucionario. He leído historias posteriores que por muchísimo menos eran llevadas a tribunales. Es un libro escrito con mucha rabia, con pasión, con ardor...La misma se percibe la interacción con los personajes, en el mundo sobrenatural que subyace y en el mismísimo tratamiento de los temas. Lewis, básicamente, se caga en la institución cristiana católica apostólica. Pero de una manera muy de la época: elegante y sin despeinarse. Volviendo a la parte sobrenatural, me gusta que Lewis no explique porque suceden ciertos fenómenos como si hacía su antecesora, Radcliffe. Lewis no pretende en ningún momento ser raciona. El mundo estaba cambiando y él era joven y parte de ese futuro. La influencia del materialismo desfasado de LaMettrie y compañía no caló jamás en él. Y, como Radcliffe, también coge mucha influencia de Shakespeare e introduce algún elemento cómico, como la casera de Antonia, heroína gótica de la novela. Los personajes están bien construidos, no son meros arquetipos. Se aprecia una vuelta de tuerca en el arquetipo de mujer casta y virginal, como también en el del abad cuya rectitud solo es superada por la pureza de su alma. Todo acaba convirtiéndose en una caricatura macabra que fascina y aterroriza como las pinturas negras de Goya. Pero lo mejor es que Lewis no intenta justificarlo. Porque, básicamente, NO HACE FALTA. Ha sido una lectura densa pero maravillosa. Ojalá hablar más sobre ella en el futuro…

  25. 5 out of 5

    WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker

    3.5 stars Dreams, magic terrors, spells of mighty power, Witches, and ghosts who rove at midnight hour. I read this for the Classic Horror Halloween Bingo square. It's said this was written by a 19/20 yr old and within 10 weeks, which if true, is amazing. The format of having a main character, Ambrosio (the monk), and then having secondary characters branch off from him and tangentially going astray and telling their stories, only to have them all come together in the end, was extremely compellin 3.5 stars Dreams, magic terrors, spells of mighty power, Witches, and ghosts who rove at midnight hour. I read this for the Classic Horror Halloween Bingo square. It's said this was written by a 19/20 yr old and within 10 weeks, which if true, is amazing. The format of having a main character, Ambrosio (the monk), and then having secondary characters branch off from him and tangentially going astray and telling their stories, only to have them all come together in the end, was extremely compelling. I was expecting more creepiness, it takes until the 50% mark for a ghost to appear: At length the Clock struck two. The Apparition rose from her seat, and approached the side of the bed. She grasped with her icy fingers my hand which hung lifeless upon the Coverture, and pressing her cold lips to mine, again repeated, "Raymond! Raymond! Thou art mine! Raymond! Raymond! I am thine! &c.----" She then dropped my hand, quitted the chamber with slow steps, and the Door closed after her. Till that moment the faculties of my body had been all suspended; Those of my mind had alone been waking. The charm now ceased to operate: The blood which had been frozen in my veins rushed back to my heart with violence: I uttered a deep groan, and sank lifeless upon my pillow. Until the last 30-20% the story is really about love, lust, and jealousy. As an atheist I don't hold religious individuals, rather they be in high ranking positions in the church, to a higher regard. I don't think it is any more crazy that a monk would give into his lust than an average non-religious male. (Not talking about Ambrosio's later desire to rape Antonia; he wants her and she doesn't want him. This is a different issue than him being turned on by Mathilda who willing wants to sleep with him) Religious individuals might find this story more, I don't know, worrisome because of the themes of non-infallibility regarding sin; no one is safe from the devil. I did really enjoy how the author played around with the themes of religious doctrine and the hypocrisy/corruption of its supposed devout leaders, men putting the blame on women for their failings, jealousy, and power. If you read this looking for a Gothic, I think you'd hit the gold mine with it's verbiage and tone. Like I mentioned, the more creepy scenes didn't have a strong presence until the ending with the Devil making a strong appearance: He appeared in all that ugliness which since his fall from heaven had been his portion: His blasted limbs still bore marks of the Almighty's thunder: A swarthy darkness spread itself over his gigantic form: His hands and feet were armed with long Talons: Fury glared in his eyes, which might have struck the bravest heart with terror: Over his huge shoulders waved two enormous sable wings; and his hair was supplied by living snakes, which twined themselves round his brows with frightful hissings. In one hand He held a roll of parchment, and in the other an iron pen. Still the lightning flashed around him, and the Thunder with repeated bursts, seemed to announce the dissolution of Nature. This story had some twists and turns with characters having some pretty intriguing life stories. I didn't find it as outlandish as some reviews led me to believe it was going to be (a lot mention how Ambrosio lusts and rapes his sister. He didn't know it was his sister during his obsession, so calling him incestuous seems a bit unfair). I read a small amount of horror stories and watch a ton of horror movies so maybe my creep/crazy bar is set too high but I did notice two movies were made about this and Netflix has the 2011 on DVD so I'll be adding it to the queue. Man was born for society. However little He may be attached to the World, He never can wholly forget it, or bear to be wholly forgotten by it.

  26. 4 out of 5

    William2

    This novel is all about Christian, specifically Catholic, sexual hysteria. Sex seems to determine everyone's motivation in the first volume. This makes sense when you consider that it was written by a nineteen year old for whom these obsessions were no doubt a daily occurence. Fortunately for us, he has managed to sublimate them into the form of a novel. (Which puts me in mind of E.M. Forster, who, when touched on the ass by an admirer at a tender age, promptly went home and wrote Maurice.) A du This novel is all about Christian, specifically Catholic, sexual hysteria. Sex seems to determine everyone's motivation in the first volume. This makes sense when you consider that it was written by a nineteen year old for whom these obsessions were no doubt a daily occurence. Fortunately for us, he has managed to sublimate them into the form of a novel. (Which puts me in mind of E.M. Forster, who, when touched on the ass by an admirer at a tender age, promptly went home and wrote Maurice.) A duenna and her charge arrive in Madrid from provincial Mucia some time in the very late eighteenth century. For some reason no doubt to be made clear later, they arrive at a church where the much talked about Father Ambrosio is to speak. The father is a paragon of virtue. He has spent his thirty years entirely immersed in studies and prayer at the local Capuchin monastery. While waiting for the good father to arrive the duenna, Leonella, who is fifty-one, and her charge, Antonia, who is fifteen, are questioned by two young men and their tale of woe is gradually revealed. This is essentially a tale of Antonia's mother, seduced by a libertine, who runs away with her to the West Indies where thirteen years later he dies leaving her penniless so she must return to Spain with baby Antonia in tow to throw herself on the mercy of her outraged father. The wholly pure Ambrosio then spends the next sixty pages undergoing two events: the first is his heartless condemnation of a nun who has allowed herself to be seduced. She is with child but Ambrosio gives her into the hands of the prioress of her order for purposes of punishment; the second event is Ambrosio's seduction by a woman disguised as a young man, one Rosario, who has shamelessly broken the sanctity of the monastery. That at least is how Ambrosio sees it before he eventually gives way to godless and all too enjoyable rutting with the woman. These pages are tumescent with hot-blooded satanic sex. It is hard to believe they first saw the light of day in 1796. What an earth-shattering fireball this novel must have been then. One of the gentlemen entertaining the two new arrivals at the church is a nobleman, Lorenzo. It is his sister, Agnes, who has just been sacrificed by Father Ambrosio to the prioress. Now we enter into a long divagation narrated by the sister's nobleman lover, the Marquis de las Cisternas. First there is the interlude in the forest outside Strasborg in which the Marquis walks into a nest of banditti who wish him only ill. This is a vividly described section with lots of action and blood. At extraordinary length, the Marquis survives, as he must if we are to get the story of how Agnes becomes trapped into entering a convent by a guardian jealous of her relationship with the Marquis. This section involves some decisions on the part of the Marquis that no adult man with any romantic experience would make. In other words, the crudeness here really smacks of a nineteen year old writing his first novel. Yet the vivacity of the writing somehow continues to hold the reader despite these howlers. Later, we move on to Ambrosio's repeated sexcapades with Matilda (Rosario). The prioress's lie to brother Lorenzo that his sister Agnes has died in childbirth. Father Ambrosio as he overhears the prioress's evil plans for punishing Agnes on his way to an assignation with Matilda. Father Ambrosio's attempted seduction of a the young Antonia, innocent of carnal knowledge, and his deal with the devil to gain access to her lily-white body. The satisfying denouement I will not describe. Suffice it to say that Lewis's writing becomes more assured as he proceeds. By chapter 7, more than half way through, his writing becomes, as John Berryman discusses in his introduction, "passionate and astonishing."

  27. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    Now that I've finished this fabulous piece, I remember I read it several years ago. However, this time around I enjoyed it so much more. Be it because of age, wisdom, life knocking me around a bit more, don't know the reason why only that I absolutely couldn't shut up talking about it with my husband all night last night. For being only 19 when he wrote it and during the particular time period, he was very astute at the cultural swing that was occuring at the time. There is even a note of awarene Now that I've finished this fabulous piece, I remember I read it several years ago. However, this time around I enjoyed it so much more. Be it because of age, wisdom, life knocking me around a bit more, don't know the reason why only that I absolutely couldn't shut up talking about it with my husband all night last night. For being only 19 when he wrote it and during the particular time period, he was very astute at the cultural swing that was occuring at the time. There is even a note of awareness regarding his own role in society as a writer....very impressive! I haven't loved a book like this since Dostoevsky's "Demons"....people enslaved by their own passions....Wow! It's rare that a book will entice so many different emotions in me. I felt shock, horror, despair, joy, love, hate, disgust....so many things entricately woven in a tale of prideful sin and unrequited love. Wow! Wow! Wow! Note though...it's not an "easy" read....older english is very different but well worth the effort!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Bill

    I loved the language of this one. It had a deliciously creepy old school vibe to it. Probably on the account that is was originally penned in 1796. Truly a classic and holds up remarkably well.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Wreade1872

    Well that was absolute chaos. I'm very tempted to give it 4 stars but... can't quite. This is so over the top. Its a complete melodrama, but it also goes to places so much more extreme than i expected. It's is also a complete mess. The author tends to follow a character until he hits a wall, then backup and head off in another direction. A lot of it feels very pulpy, its clear that a lot of it was not planned out from the start, despite the annoying foreshadowing we get. It stops every so often Well that was absolute chaos. I'm very tempted to give it 4 stars but... can't quite. This is so over the top. Its a complete melodrama, but it also goes to places so much more extreme than i expected. It's is also a complete mess. The author tends to follow a character until he hits a wall, then backup and head off in another direction. A lot of it feels very pulpy, its clear that a lot of it was not planned out from the start, despite the annoying foreshadowing we get. It stops every so often to do a little poem or song and characters seem to switch personalities at the drop of a hat. On the other hand it also has a remarkable amount of humanity. People act in very human ways. Their thoughts and motivations make sense a lot of the time... and then it breaks out into crazy supernatural stuff. This review is as uneven as the novel ;) . Oh and then there's the weird view of superstition it keeps bringing up. At times it feels like it might be a joke but it makes such a big deal of people not being superstitious even while actual apparently supernatural stuff is happening. I mean at one point (view spoiler)[a demon (hide spoiler)] laughs at how superstitious people are! Also i couldn't get that episode of the Simpsons with Ned Flanders as (view spoiler)[the devil (hide spoiler)] out of my head during those final dungeon scenes, i don't think that was the mood the author was going for :lol . The ending gets even more uneven than the rest, there were several points were i expected it to end but it just kept going.. much like this review. The most pulpy and extreme of the Gothic's i've read and really fun for long stretches.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Yanper

    Διαβάζεται σαν παραμύθι, αλλά παραμύθι γεμάτο από θρησκευτικό φανατισμό, μαύρη μαγεία, διαστροφή, ανθρώπινα πάθη και αέναη πάλη του καλού με το κακό. Σε σοκάρει και σε μαγεύει ταυτόχρονα, σε κάνει να εκπλήσεσαι γιατί είναι το πρώτο έργο ενός 19άχρονου γραμμένο το μακρινό 1796. Απορώ πως επιβίωσε το βιβλίο μέσα σ’ ένα κόσμο που επικρατούσε ο αγγλικανικός πουριτανισμός και τα συγχωροχάρτια του καθολικισμού

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