The People's Act of Love: A Novel

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Canongate U.S., Dec 1, 2007 - Fiction - 400 pages
165 Reviews
Set in a time of great social upheaval, warfare, and terrorism, and against a stark, lawless Siberia at the end of the Russian Revolution, The People’s Act of Love portrays the fragile coexistence of a beautiful, independent mother raising her son alone, a megalomaniac Czech captain and his restless regiment, and a mystical separatist Christian sect. When a mysterious, charismatic stranger trudges into their snowy village with a frighteningly outlandish story to tell, its balance is shaken to the core.

 

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Meek is an excellent writer. - Goodreads
The writing wasn't so wonderful, unfortunately. - Goodreads
Overall though--very intriguing plot. - Goodreads
Wow. This book blew me away with its prose and scope. - Goodreads
I found the story telling to be masterful. - Goodreads
Great pace throughout. - Goodreads

Review: The People's Act of Love

User Review  - Barb - Goodreads

Started a bit slowly, but I ended up liking it. Well written but not quite a page turner Read full review

Review: The People's Act of Love

User Review  - Rana - Goodreads

I completely honestly truely hated it!!! pls dont missunderstand me its interesting but its too hard to deal with all of that violence, cannibalism, castration, and POOR Anna what a bad luck she has ... Read full review

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Page 2 - First: those frivolous, thoughtless and vapid women, whom we shall use as we use the third and fourth category of men. Second: women who are ardent, gifted and devoted, but do not belong to us because they have not yet achieved a passionless and austere revolutionary understanding: these must be used like the men of the fifth category. Finally there are the women who are completely on our side, ie those who are wholly dedicated and who have accepted our program in its entirety. We should regard these...
Page xvi - ... of so-called culture, and lives in it only because he has faith in its speedy and total destruction. He is not a revolutionary if he feels pity for anything in this world. If he is able to, he must face the annihilation of a situation, of a relationship or of any person who is a part of this world — everything and everyone must be equally odious to him. All the worse for him if he has family, friends and loved ones in this world ; he is no revolutionary if they can stay his hand.
Page xvi - The revolutionary enters into the world of the state, of class and of so-called culture, and lives in it only because he has faith in its speedy and total destruction. He is not a revolutionary if he feels pity for anything in this world. If he is able to, he must face the annihilation of a situation, of a relationship or of any person who is a part of this world — everything and everyone must be equally odious to him. All the worse for him if he has family, friends...
Page 2 - ... in its entirety. We should regard these women as the most valuable of our treasures, whose assistance we cannot do without.
Page xvi - ... (11.) When a comrade gets into trouble, the revolutionary, in deciding whether he should be rescued or not, must think not in terms of his personal feelings but only of the good of the revolutionary cause. Therefore he must balance, on the one hand, the usefulness of the comrade, and on the other, the amount of revolutionary energy that would necessarily be expended on his deliverance, and must settle for whichever is the weightier consideration.
Page xv - The nature of the true revolutionary has no place for any romanticism, any sentimentality, rapture or enthusiasm. It has no place either for personal hatred or vengeance. The revolutionary passion, which in him becomes a habitual state of mind, must at every moment be combined with cold calculation. Always and everywhere he must be not what the promptings of his personal inclinations would have him be, but what...

About the author (2007)

James Meek was born in London in 1962 and grew up in Dundee. He has published two novels, Mcfarlane Boils The Sea and Drivetime, and two collections of short stories, Last Orders and, most recently, The Museum Of Doubt. He contributed to the acclaimed Rebel Inc anthologies The Children Of Albion Rovers and The Rovers Return.

He has worked as a newspaper reporter since 1985. He lived in the former Soviet Union from 1991 to 1999. He now lives in London, where he writes for the Guardian, and contributes to the London Review of Books and Granta. In 2004 his reporting from Iraq and about Guantanamo Bay won a number of British and international awards.

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