The Falls

The Falls It is and after a disastrous honeymoon night Ariah Erskine s young husband throws himself into the roaring waters of Niagara Falls Ariah the Widow Bride of the Falls begins a relentless seven

It is 1950 and, after a disastrous honeymoon night, Ariah Erskine s young husband throws himself into the roaring waters of Niagara Falls Ariah, the Widow Bride of the Falls, begins a relentless seven day vigil in the mist, waiting for his body to be found At her side is confirmed bachelor and pillar of the community Dirk Burnaby, who is unexpectedly drawn to this plaiIt is 1950 and, after a disastrous honeymoon night, Ariah Erskine s young husband throws himself into the roaring waters of Niagara Falls Ariah, the Widow Bride of the Falls, begins a relentless seven day vigil in the mist, waiting for his body to be found At her side is confirmed bachelor and pillar of the community Dirk Burnaby, who is unexpectedly drawn to this plain, strange woman What follows is a passionate love affair, marriage, and family a seemingly perfect existence But the tragedy by which they were thrown together begins to shadow them, damaging their idyll with distrust, greed, and even murder Set against the mythic historic backdrop of Niagara Falls in the mid twentieth century, this haunting exploration of the American family in crisis is a stunning achievement from one of the great artistic forces of our time The Nation.

  • á The Falls ↠ Joyce Carol Oates
    181 Joyce Carol Oates
The Falls

  1. Joyce Carol Oates is a recipient of the National Book Award and the PEN Malamud Award for Excellence in Short Fiction She is also the recipient of the 2005 Prix Femina for The Falls She is the Roger S Berlind Distinguished Professor of the Humanities at Princeton University, and she has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters since 1978 Pseudonyms Rosamond Smith and Lauren Kelly.

256 Reply to “The Falls”

  1. The terrible, wonderful appeal of a raging waterfall you can cross above it, brave acrobat you can lose yourself in it, angst and sadness begone, your body falling into something greater than the cares that weigh you down you can wait beside it, a spectral vision of mourning and tragedy, a local icon for tourists to gape at, waiting for that body, waiting for the falls to rebirth its lonely suicide as it always eventually will you can live next to it, next to its tamer parts, the waterfall s maj [...]

  2. I read The Falls for book club I was looking forward to reading it, given its roots in historical events and my past reading of her novel, We Were the Mulvaneys The Falls was, hands down, the worst novel I have read for years If I could, I would give it 1 4 of a star The first few hundred pages are horrid adjective after adjective describing nothing The characters are boring, generally unbelievable, and have no depth To her credit, Joyce Carol Oates offers the reader moments of promise descripti [...]

  3. SynopsisWidowed on her wedding night when her new husband, a young minister and latent homosexual, throws himself into the falls, Ariah Littrell, the plain, awkward daughter of a minister, henceforth considers herself damned Her bleak future becomes miraculously bright when Dirk Burnaby, a handsome, wealthy bon vivant with an altruistic heart, falls in love with the media dubbed Widow Bride Their rapturous happiness is shadowed only by Ariah s illogical conviction over the years that Dirk will l [...]

  4. Illusioni otticheGrande libro Si parte da una notte di nozze catastrofica s , come il Chesil Beach di Mac Ewan , e, dal nucleo iniziale di una coppia nata male, la storia si allarga su la societ dagli anni 50 fino a un giorno preciso del 1978.Ogni evento vissuto a pi riprese, da angolazioni diverse, a seconda del personaggio narratore di quel momento, ogni voce ha il proprio timbro inconfondibile cos le storie, per lo pi infelici o assolutamente tragiche, si tingono di colori sfumati.La struttur [...]

  5. JCO is one of those writers you either love or hate I happen to love most everything she does The Falls is no exception, although I really started to get bored with her story set up Once she finally got the ball rolling about 60 pages into it it was cinematic in scope and really ranks high among her best works Set in the 40 s through the 70 s in duh Niagara Falls, NY, The Falls describes the falls eerie, almost preternatural effect on a family, practically destroying it I found myself skim readi [...]

  6. This book was given to me as a gift, otherwise I would have never had it in my home, especially after reading We Were the Mulvaneys which I found to be an equally horrible read I felt a little compelled to read this because it is set in the Niagra area, where I have visited many times.There are two main problems with this book, and they permeate the book unfortunately The first is that Oates characters are not in any way genuine Their reactions, motivations, what they say and do all ring false I [...]

  7. This book follows the life of a woman haunted by the rejection of her first spouse and her eternal fear that she will be rejected by anyone who is drawn into her circle of life Ariah lives her life almost as a fugitive, constantly looking over her shoulder, reading into things said as proof that she is unworthy of affection She becomes brittle and nearly unapproachable By protecting herself, she seems to live life in the shadows, barely participating, but an influence nonetheless.

  8. This was good, but after ADORING We Were the Mulvaneys by Joyce Carol Oates, I wanted this one to be a bit better than it was I was really close at one point to giving this a 4 out of 5 stars The beginning of this book, mainly the first 100 pages, were a MASSIVE blow to the book and the story told in the first 100 pages could have been told in 50 pages I just couldn t get into it at first However, Part 2 came around and I FELL IN LOVE WITH THE BOOK From page 115 to around 270 Part 2 s page numbe [...]

  9. You can t help pitying the people who show up in the novels of Joyce Carol Oates From the first page, you sense that they re going to be known to death, literally splayed by her insight And before you realize it, she s done the same thing to us For 40 years, she s coyly enticed us with the gothic details of ordinary life and then when it s too late pinned us on the sharp point of her wisdom.I read The Falls, her latest novel, in what seemed like one held breath Set around Niagara, the story refl [...]

  10. Je voulais d couvrir cet auteur depuis longtemps et mon seul regret c est de ne pas l avoir fait plus t t Les Chutes est un roman poignant et d une richesse psychologique folle Ariah Littrell se r veille le matin de sa lune de miel, apr s sa nuit de noces et une gueule de bois trange combinaison Elle se r veille l esprit embrouill et l me meurtrie, mais pr te tenir son r le de jeune mari e H las, son mari vient de se jeter dans les chutes du Niagara, pour des raisons qu elle ne conna tra jamais, [...]

  11. The beginning of this book mesmerized me much as the very Falls described here by Oates For 120 pages, the book was just shy of glued to my hand, and I could not put it down Then, for the next 200 pages, I could barely pick it back up, to continue By the mid 300s, I was hoping there would be a chemical explosion at one of the factories and all of the characters would die, putting me out of my misery.I had never before read Joyce Carol Oates, so I don t know if this inconsistency is typical, or r [...]

  12. Not exactly the kind of story I usually read but it is good to read beyond one s immediate pleasures and this novel by Oates is an example of why that s a good idea And I know I will return to Oates every once in a while, since I enjoy her distinct voice and style.The title The Falls is well chosen, as it covers the layered falls herein On the surface it is, obviously a reference to the Niagara Falls, where just about the whole story takes place, but it also covers the various kinds of falls fro [...]

  13. The Falls was my first ever Joyce Carol Oates novel I ve read a few of her stories over the years, though none of them particularly stand out in my mind I have vague but admiring memories of what is probably her most famous short story, frequently anthologized, called Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been I know she s considered something of an icon in the fiction world, so I took that into this experience, expecting what s generally called literary fiction, and expecting it to be well done H [...]

  14. E stato il mio primo incontro con Joyce Carol Oates e non sar l ultimo Leggere questo libro stato al tempo stesso terribile e intrigante come fare un viaggio in nave sul percorso navigabile lungo il fiume Niagara.Le Cascate del Niagara un maestoso fenomeno della natura, di una potenza impetuosa e travolgente tale che gli animi di chi si trova a Niagara Falls vengono attirati, in preda a una terrificante forza ipnotica, a perdersi nella nebbia uguale a quella formata da miliardi di gocce che si a [...]

  15. I thought this was an absolutely astonishing story The writing is deep, and, though there were many times when I thought it seemed to go on a bit, I found myself still caught up in the rhythm of her astonishing prose The central character, Ariah, is not a very likable character On the first night of her honeymoon in Niagara Falls in the early 1950s, her new husband leaves their bed, walks to the Falls and throws himself over Ariah finds the suicide note h left but destroys it without telling any [...]

  16. The woman in black intrigues me When I read The Falls, I thought she was Nina Olshaker, recognizing Dirk in Royall, making love to Royall as she had not been able to do with his father On the other hand, the scene in the cemetery is eerie and unreal enough to make a case for her being a phantom Her diction reminded me of Claudine, but Claudine would have been much older and never would have worn those clothes, and her hair was blond, not black, and she was always impeccably coiffed and never bar [...]

  17. My first JCO book and possibly my last Some great ideas and stunning imagery, but The Falls got on my nerves pretty fast Oates pen tends to linger for pages and pages and pages on events that other writers would condense into one or two sentences In particular, the play by play on hotel staff handling a woman whose husband just threw himself into Niagara Falls was excruciating That Oates intermittently punctuates her descriptions by italicizing the mostly cliched inner thoughts of her characters [...]

  18. Joyce Carol Oates has become quite a name in the fiction world I thought it was high time that I read one of her works Unfortunately, my first foray was The Falls Neither the characters, plot, nor writing left me particularly enthralled Nevertheless it was a readable novel, something to occupy my time The main character is Ariah who becomes a widow on her honeymoon when her husband commits suicide by jumping in to Niagara Falls Through this misfortune another man becomes obsessed with her They m [...]

  19. This was my second Joyce Carol Oates after reading We Were the Mulvaneys I didn t enjoy this one as much, but it s still well worth reading I lived in the Buffalo Niagara area for 12 years, so I enjoyed all of the local color in this novel In addition, a good deal of this story concerns the very early developments in the Love Canal case I took a sociology class in college from a professor who wrote a book about the homeowner s group that formed in the wake of the lawsuits from a sociological per [...]

  20. What can I say about Joyce Carol Oates Her ability to tackle just about any genre continues to amaze me with each new book Take, for example, the Falls, which begins as a sort of modern Greek Tragedy, before seamlessly transitioning into a ravishing romance, and then later a legal thriller that reads like a combination of Silent Spring and A Civil Action While the themes in The Falls aren t as potent as those found in Foxfire, they re still well worth the four hundred plus pages Oates takes to e [...]

  21. I m sad to have finished The Falls Joyce Carol Oates is a genius otherwise she could not have intertwined such deep fascinating characters into several or poignant themes seamlessly I ve been told her work can be inconsistent from novel to novel, but I was for in the first 30 pages The only minor complaint about the book I may have is that it seemed to slow a bit at the end However, I was still left wanting I think I have a new one for my top ten list I love a book that makes such a strong imp [...]

  22. I was disappointed in this Oates novel Too much description going nowhere a lot of the time the first few chapters the worst Not like her other work The most interesting element of the book was about the Love Canal case.

  23. In the opening pages of the novel, a young red headed woman wakes to find her groom missing the morning after their wedding Honeymooning in the famous Niagara Falls area, scandal soon erupts as news arrives that a man fitting his description has jumped to his death in the falls.This is a novel that simply brims with excitement and interesting characters Oates reels her reader in with not one story line, but several one after another in what becomes a saga of this woman s life, the community and [...]

  24. A tale whose theme is resurgent in this age where industrial pollution and climate change are high on everyone s mind Niagara Falls in the 60 s may have been the Love Capital of America but it was also the home of Love Canal, the most polluted industrial site that erupted and exposed the evil underbelly of crony capitalism.And yet this novel begins and ends as a love story a young headstrong woman, Ariah Erskine, and her pastor husband who is hiding the secret of his sexuality go to the Falls on [...]

  25. Joyce Carol Oates expertly takes cultural icons and important events and builds novels around them that seem vividly real as they could very well be.The Falls is actually several stories all wrapped into one novel First, we meet Ariah Erksine, a newlywed whose husband commits suicide the morning after their wedding night by getting up early, racing to the falls, and plunging in This is the strange event that gets the novel going JCO is very good at this many of her novels begin with events that [...]

  26. This book met my standard for keeping me engrossed on the subway Oates is certainly an engaging writer, with a flair for Gothic excess sex in a graveyard, forsooth When I saw the story was to be multi generational, I hoped for a robust pattern, perhaps along the lines of Wuthering Heights, where the second generation, though repeating some of the happenings of the first generation, has a better outcome But aside from the said graveyard sex, where the son has a bizarre sexual encounter with a wo [...]

  27. I ve read some complaints about this book as being over written and boring with hard to like characters and while I can see where these folks are coming from this is part of what I like about JCO That she creates a complete believable world with flawed characters, who sometimes think in cliche, even another complaint I read I enjoy all the details, how JCO creates an image I can actually see Contrary to what someone in another review complained about, I think it was important to follow Ariah on [...]

  28. So much book and so little story Pages and pages and pages of words that lead nowhere Characters that only the Author could love or even like The history of the Love Canal lawsuit was interesting and that part of the story elevated the rating of this book One feels for Ariah s childrenuck with a crazy, nerotic, insane mother These are the only two elements of this book that evoke any feeling or reaction at all.Ariah Here s a woman who should have stayed at home with her Pastor father and lived t [...]

  29. Another magnificent book written by Joyce Carol Oates, even if it s quite depressing but very realistic.3 Missing Mom4 Carthage4 Little Bird of Heaven3 Marriages and Infidelities4 Little Bird of Heaven4 The FallsTR MaryaTR BellefleurTR Jack of SpadesTR We Were the MulvaneysTB BlondeTR The AccursedTR Black WaterTR The Virgin in the Rose BowerTR A Garden of Earthly DelightsTR The Lost Landscape A Writer s Coming of AgeTR My Sister, my LoveTR The Man without a Shadow

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