Impossible Views of the World

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 01 Aug 2017

Member Reviews

The writing is very disjointed and makes it hard to follow the story. Ended sharply and nothing really happened in the story.
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It was okay. I enjoyed reading it, but it didn't particularly grab me. I liked the concept but not the execution so much.
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If there ever is a book that is too focused on details, explaining and internal dialog this book would be it. 
This book is neither and nor gives a bad massage,  the opposite actually. It has a great message about growing up and moving on. But its also not too well written and i would guess that most people will not actually finish the book if they are not like me someone that can't stop a book in hopes the ending is worth it. 

All in all not horrible but also not a great one.
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Review by 2shay..........

I have reviewed a lot of books, and read many times more. I know what I like and make very few mistakes. I write a lot of 4 and 5 Star reviews because I’m pretty selective in my choices. I hate writing negative reviews! Hate it! I’ve had this book for a while, sucked in by the blurb, and tried to get interested. I just couldn’t. At 20%, I caved.

A friend once told me that he has a special name for books that are too wordy and pretentious...peacock feathers. If an author calls the sky blue, I understand that there are many shades of don’t need to tell me in excruciating detail and similes the exact shade of blue in today’s sky. Please don’t. She did. I quit.

I gave this book 2 Stars because of the sheer effort of putting that many peacock feathers in a row.

Skip this one.  ARC graciously provided by Penguin and NetGalley for an honest and voluntary review.
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We all have to grow up; this is a great awesome book about a woman finds her own power and worth.* I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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I was very intrigued by the premise of this book but couldn't get past the irritating internal dialogue of the lead character.
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This was the first book I received from Penguin Books on NetGalley and I was very happy about it. Add to that the interesting premise of a museum and a mysterious map of a magical settlement, as well as the beautiful cover, which reminded me of The Grand Budapest Hotel movie cover, and I was hooked.

Unfortunately, the book is anything but exciting. For starters, the main character was a strange, self-contradictory woman, who was as hard to like for me, as she was for all the rest of the characters. She seemed to possess mainly negative qualities, and most of all, she was rude and judgmental to the other characters, yet extremely gullible when it came to the museum heartthrob who managed to get her interest, despite being a very obvious sleazebag.

Also, story-wise, there were two separate stories which had nothing to do with each other, aside from being connected to the main character, Stella, and they kept pulling the main story in different directions, making it scattered and unbalanced.

The map story was very naive, childish and not really interesting to follow, and the story of Stella’s private life was just so out of place in terms of the book, that while finding it somewhat more interesting, I felt awkward reading about it, because it so obviously did not belong in the book, at all.

The writing itself was not to my liking either. To some it might have been clever, but to me it seemed very pretentious. There’s nothing bad about using a rich vocabulary, but it just seemed very forced and ostentatious, like a teenager trying to sound smart at a college party.
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I couldn't finish this book. I could never engage with the characters or even the story, which kept going back and forth and getting nowhere. The issues it could work on (toxic relationships, mental health) are not developed and the author simply presents them as decorative facts. I'm sorry, but this book, in my opinion, isn't very good.
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tedious, obscure, no resolution, pointless, too many unnecessary words, descriptions
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This book was a bit slow for me & too “putdown-able”, I’m afraid. Not a total miss but was hoping for a hit.  Will check out more by this author and keep my eyes peeled for future. Thanks for this ARC!
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Just couldn't get into it from the start. When every sentence is broken up with comma side notes, and the vocabulary is to the point of OED reference, just not my type of book.
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Let me just say straight off that I loved this book. I thought the writing was excellent -- very technically precise, which not only appeals to me but is also perfect for the main character, Stella, a sort of neurotic academic type working in a fictional NYC art museum. I also found a great many hysterical, laugh-out-loud moments. The humor here won't be for everyone, but it certainly felt Made For Me.

Stella is complex. Sympathetic but in no way perfect. She's going through a tough time, and much of it is of her own making. Like a real person! But even the secondary characters are so rich, so well-drawn. I feel like I've met all of these people. By that I mean both that they're realistic and seem culled from real life, and also that Ives writes so well that her characters leap out.

I can't quite give it 5 stars, mainly because I had problems with some elements around the vague "bibliomystery" that ostensibly drives the story (nota bene: it's actually the characters and relationships that drive the story). I didn't buy most of Stella's leaps of logic, presented almost as intellectual instinct, that had her interested in and/or tracking down various books and documents and whatnot, ultimately to "solve" a research mystery that was parallel to, and somewhat symbolic of, though not related to her own life. So, readers more invested in those elements will be disappointed.

But me? I literally did not want this book to end.
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IMG_2564Stella Krakus is a curator at Manhattan’s renowned Central Museum of Art and is having the roughest week. Her soon-to-be ex-husband is stalking her and a workplace romance with “a fascinating, hyper-rational narcissist” is in free fall. But then a beloved colleague, Paul, goes missing and it seems strange things are afoot.

The appearance of a mysterious map, depicting a 19th-century utopian settlement, sends Stella hunting to discover the truth. What  links a haunting poem, several unusual novels, a counterfeiting scheme, and one of the museum’s colorful early benefactors? Can she discover the unbearable secret that Paul’s been keeping?  It won’t be easy with all the distractions around her – she unwittingly stars in a viral video that’s making the rounds and the museums current exhibit is sponsored by a Belgian multinational that wants to take over the world’s water supply.

It is almost unbearably hipster New York. Almost. Luckily there’s enough salty humour in here and enough old money New York to save it and I ended up liking Stella quite a lot and wanted to know what would happen.

Unfortunately the ending left me feeling a little ‘what was the point’ and I do think this book missed a couple of great opportunities. Still a pleasant enough way to spend a few hours and I’ll look out for her next book.
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Museum setting, mysterious maps, this had all the makings to be something I loved. But I could not get past the slow pacing. It opens with pages describing mundane tasks such as weather and getting to work and through security gates and it just never grabbed me. 

Gorgeous cover and interesting premise, but the meandering writing process held me back finishing.
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A curator at the Central Museum of Art in Manhattan, Stella Krakus’ life turns upside down when her co-worker, Paul, mysteriously disappears and her ex-husband decides to fight for her affections. At the same time, Stella have to navigate the aftermath of her disastrous affair with another colleague and the demands of her mother.

The plot unfolds in a matter of weeks, the pace is good and gives plenty of room for the mystery to unfurl organically, allowing the protagonist to grow and learn more about herself in the process. At the heart of the novel is not just the discovery of the map and where it leads to, but what it means for Stella’s personal journey. It gives her the push she needed to re-evaluate her life and reminds her of who she is and which direction she wants to take. Paul’s disappearance is Stella’s catalyst to take responsibility of her life and clear the mess that had settled in.

Writers are distinguished not only by the stories they tell, but also by how they tell them. Lucy Ives is undoubtedly carrying her own style that breathes into every word and every sentence. I would be instantly able to recognize her other works by the writing. I like that she challenges the reader, reminding us that there are many more words in our vocabulary.

I found the Utopians’ tale more intriguing, but don’t let it come to you as a surprise. Stories of artistic women living in a whimsical utopia would always be one step ahead of modern everyday life. I’m not quite sure if it was just me, but one Saturday evening with a glass of rosé next to me, the novel acquired a different, much sweeter taste.

The amount of art incorporated into the story is told in a great length. If you are a fan of the arts, then I reckon you you won’t be left disappointed. Literary fiction entwined with a museum mystery and a dose of art is not something you can find on every bookstore shelf, so don’t miss it out if the combination ignites a spark in you!

I have kindly received an advanced copy of this book from NetGalley and Penguin Press in exchange of a fair review.
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Impossible Views of the World by Lucy Ives was an impossibly frustrating reading experience. The language and narration of this book gets in the way of the story; it seem to be used not for the story but rather for the sake of language itself. The writing style and word choice gives the entire book a pretentious feel and leaves me as a reader disengaged from the story.

Read my complete review at

Reviewed for NetGalley
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I did not finish this book. I tried very hard to get into it, but the writing felt heavy and dense. The language was needlessly difficult, and the story wandered. It didn't grab my attention, so I put it down. Sad, because the premise seemed like a good one.
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It's a rare novel that I don't finish, but going through this one was like wading through a weedy garden. All the clever words hid a possibly interesting story.
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I did not finish this book. I really wanted to like it--the cover and book description made the book sounds wonderful and I was excited to read it, but the writing style was not my thing. Also, the main character wasn't my cup of tea either.
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