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The Lost Father Paperback – January 11, 1993
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
- Jessica Grim, Oberlin Coll. Lib., Ohio
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
However, if you truly enjoyed the academic side of Simpson's writing, the structure and voice and insight and whatnot, you will find she still deserves the three stars I've given this book.
Mona Simpson writes and writes and writes. We have a scene where she's in a phone booth, and she describes to us various strangers who walk by. We are told what color irrelevant items in a room are. We are given descriptions of locations and people at length. Everybody in this book is crazy in a different way, and no surprise, after all this, the father is a disappointment, which we all knew going in. There were plenty of clues. And Mayan becomes the type of daughter you don't want to find you. She wants a $900 pearl necklace from him.
I try not to read much fiction because much of it is like this, too much useless information that the plot line doesn't need. Short stories become very, very long novels when a "writer" tells a story. Life is too short for this. But I read this because I knew that it is actually not fiction. The Lost Father is Steve Jobs' father and I wanted to see what it was about him that made Jobs' take no interest in meeting him. Well, that much you find out. But omg, what a tedious trip to get there.
But at any rate, changed names or not, this story was far too long. About a third at least could've been clipped, maybe more. And it was just boring. Ann is dull, whiny, obsessed with finding this father of hers. And you wonder, why didn't she start with something simple, like look in the phone book in Los Angeles where he used to live. That's where she ends up finding him. All in all, a waste of time.
For starters, the young medical student generally goes by Mayan. It takes quite some pages to reveal that some people also call her Ann -- the only name she was ever called int he first book.
Then, there is Mayan/Ann's childhood. In "ABH," she seemed to spend most of her time with her cousin Ben. In this book, Ben warrants a few passing mentions, but for the most part, Ann spends all her time with Emily and Mai linn -- characters never before mentioned. It's like Simpson has written one character with two different childhoods.
Still, a number of things remain consistent, such as Ann's dysfunctional mother Adele and her quietly strong grandmother Lillian. It's not enough, though; as Simpson's writing is strong, she might simply have decided to create an entirely different character rather than striving for a sequel that didn't quite gel.
As for the main plotline itself -- Mayan's search for the father who abandoned her as a child -- it's too drawn out. For reasons not clearly understood, Mayan has spent most of her life anticipating her father's reappearance; as a woman in her mid-twenties, however, she is nearly obsessed with a search for a man who is a virtual stranger. It takes a long time (and many, many pages) for Mayan to finally locate the man -- and when she does, Simpson does not really provide any reasons for the character's actions.
While this is hardly the worst book ever, I wouldn't really recommend it. Your time can be better spend elsewhere.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I feel like I'll never get through this book. It is so repetitive, describing over and over ad infinitum how the "heroine" feels about her father, who left her and her mom. Read morePublished 5 months ago by MBC
Because I can not relate to the protagonist plight or situation, I gave a low ratings based on my experience and understanding of the plot, execution and the deliverance of a... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Alexa
Too long getting to the result. The result too unsatisfying. I started skimming through trying to get through the ridiculous number of times this woman threw her life away trying... Read morePublished 14 months ago by LNK
Mona Simpson's somewhat autobigraphical novel.
She is the sister of Steve Jobs. Both were adopted.
Gives some insight into her reaction to that situation
I loved this book. It created a whole world I fell into for about a week. I grew up with a father but nonetheless the young woman's yearning, as she looked for love in her life,... Read morePublished on December 26, 2009 by Lara N. Cardamone
M. Simpson is one of the most intelligent, lyrical and emotionally-profound writers working today. This book is about an obsession that drives a young woman's life, an obsession... Read morePublished on August 15, 2009 by A reader
The writing is insightful and beautiful. Some of it reads like prose. The writer has developed since "Anywhere But Here" and this book is magnificent on a different level than... Read morePublished on August 4, 2008 by I. Smith