: A Constellation of Vital Phenomena: A Novel (): Anthony Marra: Books. : A Constellation of Vital Phenomena: A Novel (Audible Audio Edition): Anthony Marra, Colette Whitaker, Random House Audio: Books. by Anthony Marra (Hogarth) A Constellation of Vital Phenomena Marra is a brisk and able storyteller, and he moves deftly between a.

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This hard-hitting novel shows us the broken families littering the landscape there, some forced into unseemly alliances with enemies, and the nearly limitless capacity of humans to inflict pain.

The title came consteplation an old medical textbook Sonja owned. There is a glimmer of hope at the end, but it is too late and too weak.

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra | : Books

Accessibility links Skip to main content Keyboard shortcuts for audio player. Life is a constellation of vital phenomena — organization, irritability, movement, growth, reproduction, adaptation.

Driving this intense tragedy is an ordinary man, Ramzan, a young neighbor who was poisoned by pain, driven to accept his role as oof rat.

But it’s exactly that — and the brilliant writing — that kept me committed to that world and the people in it. This novel doesn’t look so much at the war as at the warred-over place and its inhabitants. Khassan does everything he thinks he needs to do in order to save his father’s life, including much needed insulin. The writing was beautiful. I think some writers are equivalent of chocolatiers, making bonbon after truffle upon caramel.

And there I say yes.

I do have some reservations. Leaving three sisters and myself in a cou I started off lost in a coulee reading A Constellation of Vital Phenomena with seven of my Traveling Sisters and some of us really got lost in this story. But he wrote it ov 28 years of age, and a Stanford professor where he was a graduate student in creative writing was quoted as saying his skills were already fully developed.


Although the author does infuse the story with humor, it is ironic humor, I know how I felt while reading this book, but why? Marga in the summer months, she had the complexion of someone who spent too much time in a cellar. I’m looking forward to Pnenomena story collection and future work.

Lists with This Book. Sing it, Brother Anthony, sing it. I’m not usually an outlier in this fashion; I usually like books more than others. I felt like I was supposed to vonstellation impressed with his clever words.

You can almost feel his desire to pull loose ends together, and I don’t blame him, for the material he’s working with constellayion lacks order and reason. In A Constellation of Vital Phenomena they become not only “write-able,” but also highly, deeply readable. Her father, annthony nurtured her curiosity with extravagant affection, was an arborist who had lost his fingers in a previous encounter with the Feds and a pair of bolt cutters.

All of these characters will become tied in an intricate web of connections that reveal how human fate is not just in our own hands, but in the antthony of all humanity. I couldn’t point it out on a map though. Sonja and Akhmed are amazing characters.

In a fantastic profile of the writer Colum McCann in yesterday’s New York Times Magazine, the writer sat with a class of high school students from Newtown: There are many reasons to read A Constellation of Vital Phenomena …. So I, too, would like to ask if readers might recommend other work, whether by this author or others with the following elements: Over kf days in a small town in Chechnya, the fates of several people — including two very different physicians one brilliant, the other hopelessa precocious eight-year-old orphan, an ethnic Russian involved in sex trafficking, a Chechen informer and his proud father, a historian who defended his country all over Europe — become intertwined.

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I knew little of Chechnya, and Marra does a masterful job of supplying enough information without weighing down the narrative.

Why did I constantly want to do anything else but listen?

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra, review

I look forward to seeing more of his work. Havaa ran into the w This beautiful and haunting novel is one of my favorite books of The tragic history of ethnic purging once again seems all too familiar and absurd. Our main characters, a village doctor Akhmed and another doctor who runs the hospital on her own as Sonja tries to hide her and protect her after her father is abducted by Russian soldiers. I’m a picky reader, and my friends tell me I’m a hard grader when I rate books.

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra

Do they smack you in the chops? It is a book about forgiveness and about things that are unforgivable. For all that, there is a powerful human story at the centre of the book and it manages to maintain a degree of hope, and the narrative is never less than readable.

View all 46 comments. It is a book that demands to be reread; it is dense and taxing and so much is happening and so many connections are made, that I am sure a second read would be very rewarding still. This is the kind of novel I love to read — one that is complex and meaningful and full of humanity and life and I wish I could give a copy to every bookish friend I know.