- Published: 2012
- Number of pages: 322 pages
- Format: MOBI
- File Size: 0.50 MB
- Authors: John Fowles
“A superb novel…Evil has seldom been so sinister.” –TimeHailed as the first modern psychological thriller, The Collector is the internationally bestselling novel that catapulted John Fowles into the front rank of contemporary novelists. This tale of obsessive love–the story of a lonely clerk who collects butterflies and of the beautiful young art student who is his ultimate quarry–remains unparalleled in its power to startle and mesmerize.”A bravura first novel…As a horror story, this book is a remarkable tour de force.” –New Yorker
Reviews from Amazon users which were colected at the time this book was published on the website:
⭐Frederick Clegg is a simple man who led a lonely life. Working as a town clerk, Frederick tries to make friends, but his oddities prevent any real connections. Self-conscience about his social class and education, Frederick believes his luck will change now that he’s won the pools. With his winnings, he finds the monetary means and fortification to execute his dream of securing a companion – a beautiful young woman he’s admired for years, but rather than woo her, Frederick plans her capture.Miranda Grey is a vibrant twenty year-old art student from an affluent middle class family. Her life seems to be bright and full of potential until she encounters Frederick. Waking bound and gagged in a cellar, her life drastically changes. To her credit, Miranda is determined to take steps necessary to survive.Told in four parts, the book begins in Frederick’s POV where he explains his thoughts and justifications for his actions. Quickly, it becomes clear that Frederick isn’t treated well by many, even Miranda issues demands to him, and this causes a bit of a sympathetic view. However, his need to keep Miranda overrides any sense of morals as he provides everything she wants given she remains his possession.With a shift to Miranda’s perspective, the tone dramatically changes and creates an alternate view of her belief system, hopes, and how she tries to survive captivity. At first, she seems snobbish and demanding, and in some ways she is, but she is resolute about doing what she must to ultimately escape. Reading about her coping mechanisms is compelling, along with her ideas of beauty, love, violence and art which make broader statements about the state of society at that time yet still relevant today.The way Frederick treats Miranda is perverse in certain ways, being a butterfly collector by hobby, she becomes his prized aberrational specimen. Though he believes he wants unconditional acceptance, it becomes clear what Frederick wants. Additionally, his own behavior is contradictory in that he has become what he’s always looked upon with disdain. Ultimately, the truth about Frederick is revealed leaving a lasting impression.In this novel, the dynamic between captor and captive is deeply complex. While misguided love seems to be Frederick’s motivation, obsessive qualities soon appear. The dichotomy between creating worlds to justify reality was also fascinating and the author used these elements with exacting precision. And, the character references to The Tempest are skillfully apt.The Collector is a book that resonates long after reading the last word. A psychological thriller in genre, and perhaps one of the earliest of its kind, it delves into the minds of its characters and offers brutal honesty even when the reader is hoping for an alternative reality. I highly recommend!
⭐I’ve read a lot of the so called “dark” psychological thrillers, including Jack Ketchum’s “The Girl Next Door.” This being said, I am of the opinion that author John Fowles delivers the most powerful and captivating story by providing what so many of those other books have missed. Furthermore, this book doesn’t have to over-rely on gruesome details or graphic imagery to convey a touching story into the mind of the reader. I definitely did not expect the ending and almost didn’t see there was a chapter four lurking back there. Author does a good job of providing suspense.My only complaint is that the book could have been shorter by cutting the endless ranting about G.P. I know, I get it, it serves as very important character development for Emma and to give the reader further insight as to her behavior in relationship to “Caliban,” but after like one hundred pages of it I literally sighed and wanted to punch G.P. in his huge nose.Otherwise, the development of both characters is excellent. Emma’s part is of profound importance in thoroughly painting (no pun intended) Frederick, and by the fourth chapter you get an outstanding picture of who these two people are.I was worried that this book might have just been a lot of hype on the coattails of the Charles Ng and Leonard Lake case, but it really is a powerfully sad novel that stands on its own merits.
⭐This book was so good, and the ending gave me such anxiety at the narrator’s foot dragging and near-complete inaction. I just wanted to scream at him to DO SOMETHING to help her, but his utter and total selfishness and lack of empathy was total and barely wavered. The scariest thing about this story is that it absolutely could be real, I imagine this situation must happen every single day all over the world and hardly anyone would notice. It’s hazardous to be a woman in the world.
⭐I can see where the book is ahead of it’s time. But, in today’s psychological thrillers. This book is slow and bland. (Not being disrespectable here.)The story starts with a lonely man Frederick Clegg that has come by with a large sum of money and now he can buy anything he wants. But Clegg is so damaged and different he longs for Miranda a young and beautiful art student. He watches her, he loves her in his weird way. All he wants is for her to love him. He plans for her and builds the perfect place for her.Then he waits for the right time to take her for his own. He lures her to his van and he chloroforms her and kidnaps her.The story is about how he wants to control her, but at first he does not want to hurt her. He wants to love her and he wants her to love him.Miranda does everything she can to make him let her go. But, she makes one mistake and Frederick’s feeling for her change. He no longer believes her or will help her as much.
⭐Read this entire book in a night- it was so good! Chilling and a bit creepy seeing how Miranda’s abductor justified his kidnapping of her and his other actions. Offered perspectives from both Miranda and Ferdinand which was great and gave readers a better picture and idea of their relationship and the situation.Fun fact: This book Inspired real like serial killers Charles Ing and Leonard Lake to abduct and keep girls prisoners as Ferdinand did.
⭐Amazing book. I love it so much. Highly recommend! !!
⭐Such a great, creepy read. Awesome
⭐I recommend this to anyone wanting to learn more about how perspective can influence the reader in literature. The first half is from the point of view of the ‘Collector’, who manages to paint himself as a fairly sympathetic figure… until you hear from his victim halfway through, and the entire way you see the situation completely changes. I read this when I was quite young, so an older reader might see through the narrator a little more quickly than I did. Despite the sad subject matter, I absolutely love this book. Required reading for any English student, and any aspiring writer. It certainly inspired me to start working on my own novels!
⭐John Fowles definitely made a splash on the literary scene when he debuted with this book, and it is easy to see why, as it still holds the same power that it did back in 1963. Frederick Clegg is the main character, and we hear from him initially in the first part of this, then the second part is from Miranda’s journal that she has been secretly keeping. We then finish with the last two sections from Frederick again.We thus meet Fred and see that he is a loner and collector of butterflies, and also works in the offices of the local council. But all this is to change when he has a big win on the Pools. We can already see that he has an obsession with Miranda, a young student that he has been watching. And now we see how far he will go with his obsession, with a new object to collect.By reading the first two parts so we can see how Miranda and Fred have different perspectives on the same incidents, and how they interact in the strange situation of warder and prisoner. Taking in class, sexual dysfunction and culture, this also has a large slice of irony and absurdism, making for what is a thoughtful and gripping read, as we follow through to the end. Fowles also deceives us somewhat, because if you think about it, with the first-person narrative form for Fred we think we have worked out the final conclusion, only to see later that we have not.You get a feel of whose works that Fowles admired here with the basic structure, but also at the same time this is not a copy of someone else’s work, but an original. The story at times becomes slightly uncomfortable due to the nature of the situation, and you do have to read between the lines at times to see what kind of person Fred is, as obviously he does not give us his full nature in what he narrates. As for Miranda, we actually see her starting to grow up and mature as the story continues, whilst also recognising the sheer scale of her predicament.In all this is tightly woven, and I believe that although the author originally wrote this in a frenzy over three or four weeks, it was about another year before it was ready for publication as things were altered and the story sharpened. We all know that such things go on, with women suddenly becoming released or escaping a demented captor, but by giving us this tale in a novel form so we are able to perhaps appreciate what happens in a different light, and how the obsessed does not realise that they are perhaps different and are not aware of the ultimate damage they do. It has to be admitted that John Fowles does show a strong amount of restraint, as he could easily have then gone on to write a continuation to this and made his name perhaps by an easier way. I for one am glad he did not, as he showed his versatility and genius by producing other great reads for us.
⭐Frederick is a rather pathetic loner who collects butterflies and is infatuated by a beautiful student, Miranda. When he wins a large amount of money he concocts a plan to add her to his collection.My favourite part of The Collector was the opening paragraph. It set the story up perfectly. The first part of the novel is from Frederick’s POV and details his preparations, the abduction, and the weeks that follow. The reader gets a fascinating insight into Frederick’s mind and the battle of wits with Miranda, although it becomes tedious in places.The second part is basically the same story from Miranda’s POV, but told in a completely different way, which also provides an interesting insight. There is a lot more introspection in this section, with Miranda reminiscing about her past and recording her thoughts in a hidden diary. This also becomes monotonous in places, but serves to show her state of mind wandering as things progress.The final part of the book is told by Frederick and forms the conclusion. I thought the ending suited the novel perfectly. A well-written and fascinating novel that drags in places due to repetitiveness and rambling, but well worth a read.
⭐I finished it today and am still processing but ended up whizzing through the latter part of the story as I was finding it somewhat uninteresting. It’s a nice twist to tell the story from a different point of view – and Miranda’s insights into her captor, class, art and so on, are quite interesting but I found the frequent diversions to her love life and friends a little too much and fundamentally irrelevant to the main story. Understand that this is somewhat more than a kidnapping story and has a more literary bent, but a little too much so for my taste at times when it wonders off on a flight of fancy about what Miranda thinks about things and her yearnings outside of the situation she is in. This was all find up to a point but went on a little too much for me.
⭐I’m reading a pile of books I’ve had on my TBR pile for ages. A friend has gifted me her old books as she’s moved so I’m diving in to some I have never thought to read. With this one, I’m being brave. It’s horror and I don’t like horror much as I dream too vividly. Well, I might not ever sleep again now.It’s a classic novel however so I wanted to dig in. A man kidnaps a woman and takes her to his remote farm, keeps her locked up and wants her to love him. The story starts well enough in London where the woman studies and then we see her taken to a remote and ficitonal farm somewhere near Lewes in Sussex.It reminded me of Misery and Hannibal Lecter’s Buffalo Bill to some extent. It’s a crime horror classic and the sense of horror runs throughout. It’s creepy with a capital C. Oh my word. Horror fans will love it and I bet the film is even more chilling and uncomfortable.If you like claustrophobic reads set in a cellar in a remote farm house……
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