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Peyton Place and Return to Peyton Place (Modern Classics) Hardcover – September 14, 1999
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From Library Journal
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
From Kirkus Reviews
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Top Customer Reviews
The book runs from about 1937 to 1944. The central character is Allison McKenzie, but there are any number of characters whose consciousness the author easily slips into: Allison's emotionally distant mother Constance, the new school superintendent Tom Makris, the town doctor Matt Swain, Allison's poverty-stricken friend Selena Cross, dedicated teacher Elsie Thornton and many others. I think it's one of the virtues of this book that Metalious creates so many believable characters, both male and female, with such apparent ease and economy.
Peyton Place the town is a major character in the book, and everyone lives in fear of it, because it demands the appearance of perfection from all its citizens and thus condones hypocrisy and condemns human frailty. But Peyton Place isn't unique; it's a microcosm of a sexually repressive society. If someone describes your office as "a regular 'Peyton Place'," you can bet that harassment follows in the path of the hijinks. Big city or small town, there's a little "Peyton Place" in us all, even in these more liberated times.
I would recommend that readers save the introduction to the novel until after they have read it because it gives too much of the plot away.
I finally read Peyton Place several years ago, long after it wasn�t �hot stuff� or controversial. Certainly it isn�t shocking by today�s standards but the book presents an interesting view of 1950�s America, far removed from the soda pop and sundae image that nostalgia has tried to recreate.
The story centers around Allison McKenzie, a girl coming of age and facing all of the challenges of growing up in a small town without a father. Her mother, Constance, is emotionally distance at the novel�s beginning but warms steadily as she undertakes a romance of her own. Matt Swain is presented as the doctor with a conscience, and the impoverished Cross family provides an ample contrast to the genteel country setting. The book, in many ways, reminds me of Edith Wharton- characters whose lives are woven together in a tremendous fabric of narrative and insight. All characters seem to struggle with the perceived morality forced upon them by the social morays of life in a small town, and the manner in which the deal with problems provides much of the plot that propels this book. In short, this book is wonderful and probably on my top three or four lists of favorites. It�s exciting without being tawdry, and something I wish I had read a long time ago.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Riveting and scandalous.! The ending fell a little flat, however...sort of anticlimactic.Published 2 hours ago by S. Lofquist
I read a book about the decade of the 50s and PP was mentioned in it and the effect it had on the culture of the times. Read morePublished 6 days ago by Johnny 1955-2055
It took me back to my younger days when we were trying to get a copy of it. I wanted to read it as an adult and I couldn't put it down.Published 6 days ago by beverly jacques
Fast read and ageless, took me back to my youth. It's been fifty years since I read Peyton Place reading Return now was worth the wait. Absolutely loved it.Published 15 days ago by Ruth W. , Illinois
Still relevant and not so shocking in 2016. I enjoyed the multiple story lines.Published 23 days ago by Dana S. Whitney
The story is much better than the show or the media has led the public to believe.Published 24 days ago by Amazon Customer
Standing in the kitchen as a teenager my mom made a reference to this book ... This is why I read it. She has been gone from us since 2004. Read morePublished 3 months ago by lisa riner