Three Novels: Molloy, Malone Dies, The Unnamable

Three Novels: Molloy, Malone Dies, The Unnamable

by Samuel Beckett


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Few works of contemporary literature are so universally acclaimed as central to our understanding of the human experience as Nobel Prize winner Samuel Beckett’s famous trilogy. Molloy , the first of these masterpieces, appeared in French in 1951. It was followed seven months later by Malone Dies and two years later by The Unnamable. All three have been rendered into English by the author.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780802144478
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Publication date: 06/16/2009
Pages: 416
Sales rank: 280,017
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)

What People are Saying About This

A. Alvarez

In the trilogy, Beckett is creating his own death in prose, quarrying right down to that subterranean country of his heart....What remains is a terminal vision, a terminal style, and, from the point of view of possible development, a work at least as aesthetically terminal as Finnegan's Wake.

Richard Ellmann

Samuel Beckett is sui generis...he has given a voice to the decrepit and maimed and inarticulate, men and women at the end of their tether, past prose or pretense, past claim of meaningful existence. He seems to say that only there and then, as metabolism lowers, amidt God's paucity, not his plenty, can the core of the human condition be approached...yet his musical cadences, his wrought and precise sentences, cannot help but stave off the salamadars, we survive in his fires.

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Three Novels 2.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Error within the file making the text unreadable due to it freezing the nook! Do not purchase
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
While I'm sure the book is wonderful, The nook never let me read it: it would frequently stop responding, not allowing me to summon the menu, giving me the message "Activity Reader has stopped responding" This does not happen with any of my other books, and I was disappointed not to be able to read this one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I wish that I had read the reviews of this book before I bought it. I'm having the same problem that others mention, I can only read one or two pages before the reading application freezes and I need to exit.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Will not let me read past page 16!!! What a waste of time and money...suggest getting a hard book copy!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this trilogy three times each year, I feel opened up by its style and story line, Beckett is refreshing after reading the "New" stuff out there today.
martymojito on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Wow, this was hard work. Such a weird turn of phrase. Difficult to read but rewarding but I am still not sure if I enjoyed it or not. I found myself looking at the page numbers working out how many pages were left - not a good sign. The first story about Molly has only two paragraphs - one is less than a page long and the next is about 80 pages long, mad. I haven;t the energy or will to move on to the next story - maybe later, life is too short.
wrmjr66 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Reading Molloy now. No promises that I'll read the trilogy.

Those were my sentiments before reading Molloy. After reading it, I'd say I'm much more likely to read them all--just not one after another. Molloy is much what I expected from Beckett: disjointed, bleak at times, always funny. If you don't think Waiting for Godot is hilarious, then you aren't likely to find the humor in this book either. As a novel, it's easy to see what Beckett is trying to do. He is playing another variation on the impossibility of relating one's story. He's clearly closer to Kafka than to Sterne, but it's all part of the same game.

In this case, Beckett uses two narrators. First is Molloy, a vagrant who inexplicably finds himself in his mother's room and is ordered by some unknown person to report how he got there. The second is Jacques Moran who is some sort of investigator. He is assigned to find Molloy, though he is given no clue how to find him or what to do with him once found. Midway through his unsuccessful search--a journey during which he becomes more and more like Molloy--he is ordered back home to write a report on his search.

So that's the "plot" summary, such as it is. What is interesting is the narrative game. If you're bored with that particular narrative game, then you'll find this boring. I still like this sort of thing, so I enjoyed it and if I have world enough and time, I will probably read the others.
araridan on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I would give Molloy alone 5 stars, but I think the novels are in order of best to worst, and also in order of how much sense they make. But Molloy was really good, so I think the 4-star rating is an accurate judgement of the series as a whole since I would probably give Malone Dies 4 stars, and the Unnamable 3. 9/19 - I finished "Molloy" today. The intimidating 93 page rant without any paragraph breaks that comprises the first chapter turned out to be quite enjoyable. There is very little plot but one is privy to the inner monologue of essentially a homeless person, Molloy. Thoughts move from subject to subject quite rapidly, following tangents and somehow making their way back, and at other times pages and pages can be spent describing one obsessive neurotic ritual. The second chapter follows Moran, a private detective who is on a mission to track down Molloy. He is very unlikable, extremely harsh with his son and maid. His demeanor is defined by his need for order and therefore he always seems uptight or strict. The second chapter is essentially another long rant/inner dialogue, but with paragraph breaks. I find it especially interesting that some people read the second chapter as a prequel to the first, or that Moran and Molloy are the same representing the old age of the other....Something to keep in mind when you read it...which you should do. 10/5 - Finished the second installment entitled "Malone Dies" last night. Basically I had a hard time reading this novel mostly because I couldn't tell what was going on. I felt a little better once I looked the book up online for reviews and criticism and basically confirmed that there is no plot, character development (in fact some characters change names with little warning), or scene. You know some dude is dying, but it's unclear if he is home, in a hospital, or in some other institution. The bulk of the text is actually memories and nightmares which is why I was having a hard time following any structure...there isn't much of one. However, there is a pretty hilarious/depressing story dealing with a seemingly retarded man and his very elderly caretaker and their attempts at intercourse. I can appreciate that Beckett was trying to do something different as far as structure and language of novels are concerned; I just happened to like the way he pulled it off in Molloy better. 10/24 - Finished "the Unnamable." I really couldn't tell you what happened in this last short novel of the trilogy. Some scenes (possibly all) involved a cranky no arms, no legs, blind, deaf thing and a woman who collects his shit to fertilize her garden. Other than that the story seemed like a bunch of incoherent rambling.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Add me to the list. Got to page 11; Nook software froze. Repeated attempts failed. Nook eventually crashes. Have many other Barnes & Noble ebooks that work fine in the software. This item is defective.
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