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A Ripple From the Storm (Children of Violence) [Kindle Edition]

Doris Lessing
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $15.00
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Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers

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Book Description

Martha Quest, the embodied heroine of the Children of Violence series, has been acclaimed as one of the greatest fictional creations in the English language. In a Ripple from the Storm, Doris Lessing charts Martha Quest's personal and political adventures in race-torn British Africa, following Martha through World War II, a grotesque second marriage, and an excursion into Communism. This wise and starling novel perceptively reveals the paradoxes, passions, and ironies rooted in the life of twentieth-century Anglo-Africa.

A Ripple from the Storm is the third novel in Doris Lessing's classic Children of Violence sequence of novels, each a masterpiece in its own right, and, taken together, an incisive and all-encompassing vision of our world in the twentieth century.

Editorial Reviews


'I read the "Children of Violence" novels and began to understand how a person could write about the problems of the world in a compelling and beautiful way. And it seemed to me that was the most important thing I could ever do.' Barbara Kingsolver 'The "Children of Violence" series gives an astounding compression of a total, coherent vision, as if Doris Lessing knew all along where it would end.' The Times

About the Author

Doris Lessing is one of the most important writers of the twentieth century and was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature 2007. Her first novel, 'The Grass is Singing', was published in 1950. Among her other celebrated novels are 'The Golden Notebook', 'The Fifth Child' and 'Memoirs of a Survivor'. She has also published two volumes of her autobiography, 'Under my Skin' and 'Walking in the Shade'. Doris Lessing died on 17 November 2013 at the age of 94.

Product Details

  • File Size: 551 KB
  • Print Length: 336 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins e-books; Reissue edition (October 12, 2010)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003XDUCI6
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #703,843 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So few reviews for such a great book December 9, 2003
Trying to understand the mid-20th century? Race relations, facism, colonials, communism, sexual politics? Take a ride with Doris Lessing through her strange and fictional small town in southern Africa. This was probably my favorite book of the Children of Violence series, perhaps because in it, Martha actually takes some action. Admittedly, she and her friends are running around like rabbits and will never accomplish anything substantial in the field of race relations, but they're trying, desperately, as they marry the latest currents in European liberal thinking to the absurdities of colonial life.
Steal this book!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the story of a ripple September 18, 2000
By A Customer
Lessing presents us here to a third (or forth) phase in the life of Martha Quest, a white woman in "Zambezia", a colonialist state in Africa. "children of violence" which consists the present book is a highly recommended series as a whole, but the whole is to be differentiated as the fifth book belongs to a different genre if to any existing one. the former books, this one included, on the other hand, make an important contribution to female bildungsroman, as Lessing tells us with what i heard to be a tone of apology, in the end of the fifth book. "a ripple in the storm", specifically, suggest some more categories. it faces us with a small comunist group in "Zambezia" through world war 2 which implies all the domain of questions from justice to power in its external and internal spheres, to the state of an individual inside a storm. the story is rich, clever, subtle. it leads us to the continuance of changing and growing of Martha (the author seems to hold a certain popular enough judgement of comunism as something to grow of personally and historically, though not without retaining something of it). it leads us there as if by ourselves. it's not that you want to be or feel yourself to be Martha, actually Martha is half hidden - to herself too - in the turbulence of activity, this is part of the story. it is that you can imagine your shade appearing there in the little rooms. another point,one gets a sad description of the status of women in an example of an ideologically egalitarian organization. this fact is made clear thoroghly by description. one might believe the author doesn't even know this fact (but of course, one shouldn't).
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A Ripple From the Storm continues the Children of Violence series that began with Martha Quest: A Novel. I had honestly hoped that her well-deserved Nobel Prize for Literature would bring some more attention to this under-rated sequence of books. Sadly, from looking at the numbers on Amazon, that seems to be far from the case. Too bad. I write this review in the hopes that more people will pick it up.

Martha Quest is a privileged young white woman growing up in a fictional colonial country in Southern Africa. (Echoing Lessing's own upbringing in then-Rhodesia) The first book is a coming of age story (at least of a kind); the second (A Proper Marriage) tells the story of Martha's embrace and eventual rejection of the classic housewife role. This third book in the sequence tells the story of Martha attempting to find her way in local radical politics-- both as a white person and a woman.

Although all of the Children of Violence novels can ostensibly be read independently, I would think that this volume would be the most trying if you hadn't gotten to know Martha already in the first two books. The politics of the time seem so foolish and innocent and her abandonment of her child so callous, that she is very difficult to understand in these pages without backdrop. Those very elements are a lot of what make it so interesting for me. What I admire very much about this series is the unflinching way (that word gets used a lot, but I think that Lessing really deserves it here) she examines the intersection of race, gender, youth and politics in a setting that is fundamentally bad from the get-go.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Ripple From the Storm by Doris Lessing July 9, 2009
Martha Quest's adult life continues in Lessing's third volume in her massive Children of Violence series. This volume focuses on Martha's sense of self doubt, and her attempt to get self-actualization through becoming further involved in Communist politics. As such, the majority of this book is dedicated to her learning all she can about her Communist Party, and it becoming an encroaching presence in her life. Whereas the first two books in the series can be read as stand alone, with this one the reader is in for a much deeper and rewarding experience if they had read the two books beforehand. There is a whole new cast of characters, but only through knowing about Martha's journey to get there can you understand her motivations as she turns increasingly inward and makes a second unfortunate marriage. The story itself is rather dry- especially since it follows the absorbing A Proper Marriage- and is mainly dedicated to a political movement that is predominantly marginalized these days. It is slightly forgettable, and only leaves an afterthought of a group of intellectuals arguing about stale political concepts in a swelteringly hot room. Still though, it is part of a series that should be mandatory reading for fans of literature, and tales of Martha's maturity with Lessing's typical sophistication.
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