BookBrowse Reviews Envy by Kathryn Harrison

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Envy

A Novel

by Kathryn Harrison

Envy by Kathryn Harrison
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Jul 2005, 320 pages
    Paperback:
    Jul 2006, 320 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
BookBrowse Review Team

Buy This Book

About this Book

Reviews

BookBrowse:


Harrison's dialogue is electrifying. Thriller

Envy deals with the subject of brotherly betrayal. As the reviewer for The New York Observer puts it, 'Envy touches the nerve that drives Cain and Abel, Jacob and Esau, Will and his cold-blooded fish of a brother.' The same reviewer goes on to ponder 'The question is: Do we accept all this [from Harrison] because, after 10 psyche-shattering books, [she] has debauched us by now? Or is it because we recognize that she's communicating something important?'

The Washington Post reviewer would reply to this musing with a resounding and definite no, saying, "Writers and critics who complain of the shrinking audience for literary fiction argue -- validly -- that huge advances and advertising budgets for blockbusters reduce the resources left to promote serious novels. But the chances of good literary fiction finding an audience are also damaged when books such as Kathryn Harrison's Envy are published and passed off as worthy. Ten pages of Envy are enough to make you yearn for the juiciest trash novel you can find; 50 will have you dreaming of box-top recipes."

Others disagree, Donna Seaman, a very experienced reviewer for Booklist thinks "'Harrison's dialogue is electrifying, the sophistication of her psychology is mesmerizing, and her characters, so astutely drawn, are bewitching."

Personally speaking, Envy was a disappointment after The Binding Chair - call me middle-aged and boring but there are just so many subjects that I find more interesting than other people's sexual fantasies.  However, I can see that Envy would be of appeal to many, so don't be swayed by my opinions, instead browse an excerpt for yourself.

This review was originally published in July 2005, and has been updated for the July 2006 paperback release. Click here to go to this issue.



This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The End of Eddy
    The End of Eddy
    by Edouard Louis
    The End of Eddy has been a publishing phenomenon in Édouard Louis' native France, where it...
  • Book Jacket: If We Were Villains
    If We Were Villains
    by M L. Rio
    22 out of 28 of our reviewers rated If We Were Villains four or five stars, giving it an overall ...
  • Book Jacket: The Islamic Enlightenment
    The Islamic Enlightenment
    by Christopher de Bellaigue
    In this comprehensive and well-researched history, de Bellaigue examines the evolution of Islamic ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The One-in-a-Million Boy by Monica Wood

A richly layered novel of hearts broken seemingly beyond repair and then bound by a stunning act of human devotion.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Scribe of Siena
    by Melodie Winawer

    Equal parts transporting love story, meticulously researched historical fiction, and compelling time-travel narrative.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win The Chalk Pit

The Chalk Pit:
A Ruth Galloway Mystery

A string of murders takes Ruth underground in the newest book in the series.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

T's A S B Every M

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
Modal popup -