The Night Watch by Sarah Waters

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Synopsis

“[A] wonderful novel…Waters is almost Dickensian in her wealth of description and depth of character.”—Chicago Tribune

Moving back through the 1940s, through air raids, blacked-out streets, illicit partying, and sexual adventure, to end with its beginning in 1941, The Night Watch tells the story of four Londoners—three women and a young man with a past—whose lives, and those of their friends and lovers, connect in tragedy, stunning surprise and exquisite turns, only to change irreversibly in the shadow of a grand historical event.
 

About Sarah Waters

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A native of Wales, Sarah Waters is the award-winning author of Affinity and Tipping the Velvet.
 
Published September 27, 2006 by Riverhead. 513 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction, Gay & Lesbian. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Night Watch

Kirkus Reviews

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We gradually learn how the death of Duncan’s lover Alec Planer had set Duncan on a course of self-destruction, and also how virtually all the novel’s women have at one time been involved with, yearned for and/or failed or betrayed one another.

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The New York Times

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Sarah Waters's novel tracks a group of characters during World War II.

Mar 26 2006 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

The Guardian

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And then,' Julia laughed, 'you must go and live in Brighton.' The complex web connecting the characters, the swooping themes of love and death and the reverse chronology should condemn this novel to a messy noodle soup.

Jan 28 2007 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

The Guardian

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It all works very well, captures a time and a place (London, the war and just afterwards) – the sirens and the fear but also the desire that came from that fear, and a kind of liberation that emerged from the rubble.

Jul 12 2011 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

The Guardian

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The Night Watch by Sarah Waters Virago £16.99, pp480 Sarah Waters' first novel, Tipping the Velvet, opens, unforgettably, among barrels of oysters, some destined for the tables of Mrs Keppel and 'the old Queen'.

Jan 08 2006 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

The Guardian

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She works at a lonely-hearts bureau - patching up more war damage - with Waters's fourth main character, Helen, who sees "something disappointed" about the handsome, self-possessed Viv - "A sort of greyness.

Feb 04 2006 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

Publishers Weekly

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The novel works backward in time, beginning in 1947, as London emerges from the rubble of war, then to 1944, a time of nightly air raids, and finally to 1941, when the war's end was not in sight.

Dec 12 2005 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

Publishers Weekly

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Waters begins Night Watch at the end of her tale in 1947 and works her way backwards to 1941.

Jun 05 2006 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

Book Reporter

In many ways it is a tale about lonely people in extreme circumstances thrown together by chance, often unaware of themselves as part of anything bigger than their own lives and the moment they are living in.

Jan 13 2011 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

Suite 101

Lawrence's classic contains a very peculiar ending for an early 20th century novel.

Jun 20 2010 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

Open Book Society

Tyrion is chatting up the head of the City Watch about Slynt’s exploits: turning on his predecessor, Ned Stark, and recently killing babies.

Apr 19 2012 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

Historical Novel Society

First, I am wary of books from an organisation which only publishes books by women.

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Bookmarks Magazine

Tracy Chevalier NY Times Book Review 2.5 of 5 Stars "For all the vigor and intensity of its prose, The Night Watch leaves us with the sense that both the reader’s experience and the characters’ lives have been manipulated to suit the author’s design."

Aug 29 2007 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

California Literary Review

Sarah Waters’ fourth novel, The Night Watch, is set in 1940s London, during and after the Second World War, and is an innovative departure from her previous three lesbian Victorian historical fictions.

Jun 10 2007 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

EDGE Boston

The third season of "American Horror Story" will be subtitled "Coven," and add actress Kathy Bates to the series’ ensemble, according to the TV anthology’s co-creator, Ryan Murphy.

Nov 03 2011 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

After Ellen

It isn't until the second part of the novel that the plot really picks up, but even then it is still an intimate, close story—an examination of the private lives and unexpected connections that leap up between people ...

Mar 23 2006 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

After Ellen

The recent adaptation of The Night Watch on BBC2 is the fourth of Sarah Waters five books to have made the transition from page to screen, while her fifth book, The Little Stranger, will be made into a feature film sometime soon.

Jul 13 2011 | Read Full Review of The Night Watch

Reader Rating for The Night Watch
71%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 153 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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