In the Skin of A Lion

In the Skin of A Lion

A Novel

Book - 1987
Average Rating:
13
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Random House, Inc.
Bristling with intelligence and shimmering with romance, this novel tests the boundary between history and myth. Patrick Lewis arrives in Toronto in the 1920s and earns his living searching for a vanished millionaire and tunneling beneath Lake Ontario. In the course of his adventures, Patrick's life intersects with those of characters who reappear in Ondaatje's Booker Prize-winning The English Patient. 256 pp.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Publisher: Toronto : McClelland and Stewart, c1987
ISBN: 9780771068874
0771068875
Characteristics: 243 p

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k
KABuck
Aug 15, 2016

This book is a fierce reminder that Michael Ondaatje will always be a poet before a novelist. His story, one of his city of Toronto, is so chalk-full of bizarre imagery, unique dialogue, explicitly intimate encounters, and stunningly precise perspectives that one can at times smell the cool waters of Lake Ontario and feel the majestic stone of the Bloor Street Viaduct. However, Ondaatje seems to become trapped in his poetic habits and lose the reader along the way. All of a sudden, one is not too sure where they are, who is speaking, what has just befallen, and what message the author is trying to convey. One's final impression of the novel is a single skin-tingling passage rather than a whole story and its theme.

r
rheal4
Jun 05, 2016

I found this book did not flow well and was somewhat disjointed. Maybe that's the "poetry" of his writing but I didn't particularly like it.

d
d050387321
Sep 14, 2015

An interesting tale of aloneness even in crowds in the city and what love can bring one to do.

j
jenan40
Jul 06, 2014

A carefully crafted novel that shines with intelligence.
however, overall,I personally didn't find it to be a page turner. I wasn't really hooked.
To be fair, at some chapters I find myself eager to turn the next page.
This novel needs to be read with a very concious mind. Details are particularly important, so I couldn't just read it before sleep or while drinking coffee. It took its own time on my schedule with nothing else associated with it.

a
AuntCarolyn
Mar 13, 2014

I'm not sure if I enjoyed this book or not. It was a relatively easy read and interesting enough, but I'm luke warm about it. It felt like I was reading a book assigned by an English Lit teacher. I also couldn't help getting caught up in the weeds of the Ontario place names. The Napanee River doesn't go through Tamworth and Marmora is a couple of hours away (by 1920s driving time). There might be an advantage to not knowing the setting of a book.

s
silverajaxlibrary
Oct 04, 2013

I read this book for a Canadian History class in 2 days. What I enjoyed the most was the telling of a rarely told story of (Macedonian) immigrants who basically built the city of Toronto, by working in dangerous and dirty jobs. For those who like romance and intrigue there is also something for you .Ondaatje researched this book at The Toronto Public Library. You can book a tour with the City of Toronto to view the landmarks/ buildings detailed, which I have not done yet, but think is really cool!

s
srikanthk
May 13, 2013

On the plane, I found a lady who is a lawyer and a graduate of Wharton Business School. I asked her what book she was reading and she showed me this book saying that it was by the same author who wrote the English Patient. I was intrigued by the reading choice of such an accomplished lady and here I am trying to read the book.......
...will write my comment about the book after I read it!

e
erinsnest
Jan 24, 2013

Jan 24 2013, I chose to read this as it was the first book to win the "Canada Reads" in 2002. I have heard so much about it, that I finally decided to give it a go. Starting it today, hope I enjoy it, as my last book didn't live up to my expectations. (The Follow by Linda Spalding)(hmm....Linda Spalding seems to be Michael Ondaatje's partner.....and I chose to read their books back to back without knowing that....spooky!)......Jan 24, end of the day, I am really into this book! (Pg 64, and want to read more, but gotta get to bed!).......Jan 27, finished today, but after the first half, I kinda got lost, and never really found my way back again. It was beautifully written, but ziiiiiiiippppp, went over my head!

m
musicv
Aug 24, 2012

I liked the story. It was my first book that I read by Ondaatje. I like the discription of the bulding of the water plant.

120bass Jun 08, 2012

Interesting juxtaposition of images set in historic Toronto and Muskoka during the 1920s and 1930s. Flawed and compelling characters. A great story that tries to capture the immigrant experience.

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