Jane Green, Jane Green
6.3 /10
Ocena 6.3 na 10 możliwych
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6.3 /10
Ocena 6.3 na 10 możliwych
Na podstawie 4 ocen kanapowiczów


Julia and Mark are stuck in a loveless relationship. Julia thinks a baby will help, but perhaps that isn't the answer to her problems ... Maeve is totally allergic to commitment - she breaks out in a rash whenever she passes a buggy. A one-night stand results in an unwanted pregnancy, but just how unwanted is it? Samantha is besotted with her baby. But how is Chris, her husband, coping with his suddenly unavailable wife, and is Samantha's obsession as healthy as it seems? Babyville isn't a story about babies, it's about people. About their relationships and the effect that children, or lack of them, can have on their lives. ‘A warm, lively, wise and distinctly unputdownable novel’ Hello! ‘Once you pick up Babyville, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to put it down’ Mirror ‘Another sure-fire bestseller for Green … comes with a point and a purpose that do her undoubted skills as a storyteller a huge favour’ Times Fans of the best-selling author Jane Green will be snapping up her latest book’ Daily Express ‘You’ll be hooked – even if babies are the last thing on your mind’ Company Julia hoists herself around on the bed until her head’s at the bottom, sticks her legs straight up in the air and leans them gently on the headboard. “You know, you look ridiculous,” Mark snorts, walking out the bedroom to grab some loo paper from the bathroom, because that is their deal: She will allow the wet spot to be on her side of the bed as long as Mark is the one to clean it up, and she is only allowing it at all because she is thrilled, delighted, amazed, that Mark has even agreed to this baby in the first place. She was thrilled. Nine months ago. Nine months ago when she first broached the subject and told him that she was desperate for a baby, that at thirty three time was definitely running out; that her mother had problems conceiving her, and it took her two and a half years. That last bit was actually a bit of a white lie. Her mother conceived her on her wedding night, but that was the clincher, and she finally got her wish. She watches Mark as he comes back from the bathroom. Tallish, broadish, green-eyed and mousy-haired, he would produce adorable children. They, together, would produce adorable children. They would have Julia’s dimples and Mark’s eyes. Julia’s hair and Mark’s physique. Mark’s gentleness, calmness, and Julia’s tenacity and drive. They would have so much, if Mark and Julia were able to produce at all. Nine months. Ironic isn’t it? If they had been successful that first time they decided to leave the condoms in the drawer, they’d be having a baby right about now. To be more specific, Julia would be having a baby next Thursday. Thursday the 30th January. He or She, or Baby of Mine as Julia has termed the life that isn’t yet growing, would be an Aquarius. Her Secret Language of Birthdays book says the following about people born on January thirtieth: ‘Those commanding personalities born on January 30 are born to lead. They have a great talent for guiding, entertaining, teaching, explaining and in general making their ideas clear to others.’ Julia’s baby would have shared a birthday with Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Vanessa Redgrave, Gene Hackman and a whole host of people allegedly famous but not worth repeating. But Franklin Delano Roosevelt? Well. You can just imagine what Julia’s thinking. She lay in bed for hours that firs night, eyes wide open, thinking about her son the future prime-minister, or her daughter, the next head of the United Nations. Not that she’d planned it, but really, she had thought, is there a better sign in the galaxy? Baby of Mine would have been lucky enough not to have inherited Mark’s Cancerian moodiness or her dodgy Pisces sentimentality. According to Linda Goodman, (who’s much more up Julia’s street being a seventies hippy type of chick who is almost certainly making up fifty per cent of what she says in her books, but you don’t really mind because it’s a bloody good read), Aquarian boys and girls can be calm and sweetly docile on the surface, but the north wind can turn them suddenly topsy turvy. Expect your February child to have a dream, she says, and hold it fast – until he gets another one. Your little Uranian is, apparently, very special. He’s a humanitarian. He loves people. Do you know how rare that is? As society moves into the Aquarian age, his unprejudiced wisdom is leading us. Aquarian boys and girls have been chosen by destiny to fulfil the promises of tomorrow. All in all not a bad deal. So rather devastating that Julia’s baby chose not to make an appearance. The first couple of months it was no big deal. It only became a big deal when Sam, Julia’s best friend, fell pregnant without even trying. Of course, Julia was delighted for her, could not have been happier or more excited, but somehow it raised the stakes, began to put the pressure on, and suddenly Julia found this was no longer fun, this was business. For the first time in her life she found myself failing at something. Julia had always been Golden Girl. Through University, then into her first job on a Graduate Trainee scheme at London Daytime Television. Someone somewhere must have been smiling on her, because she was quickly promoted to the better series’, and now she’s the editor of a leading early evening chat show. Lunch times she finds herself sitting with the Controller of Entertainment. He digs his fork into her chicken for a taste, in a manner that implies equality and intimacy. And possibly more, although she’s not interested. The Head of Factual – much to he continued amazement – calls Julia to bemoan her love life. They sit in the bar after work, as researchers try and worm their way into their affections by buying them drinks and feeding them office gossip. Of course Julia has nothing to bemoan. This is what people say about her: I would like to be in her shoes. She has always had what everyone else has always wanted. From her glossy dark hair – easily her best feature – to her small feet tucked into beaded slippers or sexy pointed slingbacks. From her spotlighted career - she is regularly included in those magazine features on ‘Ones to Watch’, to her large Victorian house in Hampstead (actually, it’s Gospel Oak, but given that it’s practically on top of the Heath, and given that all the Estate Agents are now calling it Hampstead, Julia is now doing the same thing). And most of all because of Mark. Julia and Mark met four years ago. He was the company lawyer, had been with the company for about six months, had become heart-throb of the office. Julia, to her credit, was blissfully unaware of this, being embroiled in a relationship with one of those dreadful, difficult men, who pretend they love you, but are actually far too busy with their friends, their lives, to give you the time of day. Perhaps blissfully unaware is not quite true. She was vaguely aware of a new lawyer who had set hearts a-fluttering, and vaguely aware that her fellow female researchers kept dashing upstairs to get something ‘legalled’, that was quite patently legal in her opinion, and even though she knew she had met Mark, had even spoken to him, she didn’t think of him as a man. And then one lunchtime he came and stood by Julia’s table, an overflowing plate of spaghetti threatening to tip off his tray, and asked if he could join her. She was Miss Doom and Gloom, having realised that the dreadful difficult man was turning out to be too dreadfully difficult, even for her, but within minutes Mark had made her smile. The first time she had smiled for weeks. Julia never bothered ringing to tell the Dreaded Difficult man it was over. Then again, he never phoned her either. She is sometimes tempted, four years on, to ring him and tell him the relationship doesn’t seem to be working, just for a laugh, but even though the thought makes her smile from time to time, it’s not something she would ever actually do. They were friends for a while. Julia and Mark. She was working all hours, researching a fly-on-the-wall documentary about women having plastic surgery, and Mark was the junior lawyer who pretended he was also working late, who would go to her office and persuade her to get a bite to eat after work. But gorgeous as everyone else seemed to find him, Mark simply wasn’t her type. Even now she’s not entirely sure he’s her type. She tells people she fell in like with him. Because he was kind to her, and treated her well, and because he’s a nice guy. And maybe, just maybe, because she was slightly on the rebound, although the only person she’s ever admitted that to is Sam. And if that were really the case there’s no way she’d still be with him four years on, is there? Is there? They still work together, and everyone still loves him. The researchers, much like policemen, may be getting younger and younger, but they still cluster round in excitement as he passes, or scurry down the corridor to his office, an endless stream of fluffy blonde chicks, desperate to impress. It makes Julia smile. It always did. Thankfully she is not the jealous, or suspicious, type. They say the ones you have to watch are the quiet ones. That is always the ones who are least likely to have the affairs that end up having the affairs, and sometimes Julia thinks this will be the case with Mark. But the truth is that she doesn’t really care. If Mark had an affair she’s not that sure she would even be bothered to deal with it. Maybe she would. Maybe it would be an excuse to end it. Not that she’s unhappy exactly. But she’s not happy either. She just is. For the last couple of years Julia has felt as if she’s lived her life floating on a cloud of apathy, and she’s really not sure what the problem is. Everyone tells her she’s the luckiest girl in the world, and Mark does, did, everything for her, although now when she catches his eye as they sit on the sofa watching television, it shocks her to recognise herself in there: She turns away and blinks, unable to bear the thought that Mark is equally numb, because if that is the case, then what is the point? A baby is the point, she decided nine months ago, when the numbness threatened to overwhelm her. Because whilst she might not be entirely happy with Mark; whilst they may not make each other laugh anymore; whilst they barely even talk anymore, except to argue, and they don’t even manage to do that properly, Mark being the gentle, non-confrontational creature that he is . . . whilst she refuses to acknowledge that surely there is, there must be, more to life than this, there are things about Mark that she loves. She loves that he will make a wonderful husband. A heart-stoppingly amazing father. He is loyal, trustworthy and faithful. He adores other people’s children (even though he always said he wasn’t ready for children. Not by a long shot. Not yet), he grew up with three brothers and one sister, and his parents are still married. And happy. His parents still sit on the sofa and cuddle like a couple of teenagers. “Too Good to be True,” Sam stated firmly, after she first met him, had been well and truly charmed by him. “You think?” Julia was blasé, affecting a nonchalance it is easy to have when you are being chased by someone every single one of your colleagues would kill for, and are not interested. “Too Good to be True, and In Love With You.” That was how Sam said it. As a caption. As a statement that would not, could not, be questioned. A short and simple fact of life. Julia had shrugged but Sam continued. “Don’t let this one go,” she warned, and Julia took it to heart. After all, Sam was the expert. Julia was building up her career while Sam was husband-hunting. Professionally. And Sam hadn’t yet found her husband, so when she told Julia Mark was a keeper, she took her advice and kept him. He is a keeper. Sam was right. Julia watches him wash up every night, listens to him whistling as he carries the shopping home, and she knows he deserves better than this. She thinks she might deserve better than this too. They have found a way of living side by side, without ever really communicating. It had been funny, at the beginning, how different they were. They had laughed and said how lucky they were that opposites really did attract, although even then Julia wasn’t so sure. They told all their friends that the key to their relationship was exactly that they were so different; they thought that they would never be bored, each of them having their own interests. Only now can Julia see the chasm that’s opened up between them, the chasm that was always there, but, as a hairline splinter, was too difficult to see, at the beginning. Mark loves being at home. Julia loves being out. He loves his family, his close friends, and Julia. She loves being surrounded by people, strangers, anyone – the more the merrier. Mark loves pottering around the house and garden, finds true spiritual happiness in Homebase, whereas Julia is at her best in a noisy bar, chattering away over a few Cosmopolitans. Mark would have a panic attack if he ran out of slug pellets. Julia has panic attacks when she can’t get reception on her mobile phone. When they first met he was renting a small flat in Finsbury Park, she owned a tiny, messy terraced house just off Kilburn High Road. Neither of them can quite remember how it happened, but a month after they met Mark had moved in. They don’t remember discussing it, just that one day he wasn’t there, and the next he was. And Julia loved it in the beginning. She’d been on her own since leaving university, and suddenly there was someone to talk to, someone who would listen if she’d had a particularly good, or bad, day. Mark quickly assumed the role of housekeeper, chef, organiser. The unopened envelopes piled in the hallway disappeared overnight, and Mark dealt with stuff. Grown-up stuff that Julia had never got around to dealing with herself. He fixed the leaking showerhead, a small annoyance she’d learned to live with. He created a terrace out of a courtyard filled with rubble. He turned her house into a home, and when, after a year, it became too small for both of them, he bought a huge house just up the road in what was then very definitely Gospel Oak. And now they rattle around together I this big house, far, far too big for Julia. Julia loved her tiny house, loves small, cosy rooms, has never felt comfortable in this house, never felt right. Mark on the other hand, loved it instantly. Because Julia thought she did not really care where she lived, thought she did not really care where she lived, thought if Mark was happy she would be happy, she agreed, even though she now fids she has always been intimidated by the vast rooms, the high ceilings, the floor to ceiling bay windows. They meet in the kitchen, the one place Julia does like, the one room that makes her feel as though she belongs, the only room in the house that bears witness to the occasional times that Mark and Julia laugh together. Talk. Communicate. Because every now and then they do have a fantastic time. Both of them are still clinging on, hoping that those fantastic times will increase, that they will be able to recapture some of the magic that was there at the beginning. Which is why Mark agreed to the baby. Julia knew he wasn’t keen, wasn’t ready, but she has come to believe this baby is their best shot. Of course it’s not right to use children as a means of grouting up the cracks in a relationship, but Julia is convinced she’d change if they had a child together. She’d be settled. Happy. They would be a family. Nine months ago they thought it would be easy. Nine months later they know it’s not, and their inability to do something so natural, something other people find so easy, seems to be putting yet more distance between them. They talked about it at first. Tentatively. Nervously. Neither of them wanting to admit that there might be a problem, although at that stage neither genuinely thought there was a problem. They were still having sex spontaneously then. Making love without checking the chart, or taking a temperature, or lying, as Julia is now, with legs raised perpendicular to her chest, to give the sperm the easiest, laziest, route to her – hopefully – welcoming egg. In the old days they used to lie in bed after each love-making session, spontaneously or otherwise, wondering whether they had done it, whether they had created a baby. Friends of Julia’s said they knew. Sam said she knew. The very moment it happened Sam said she knew, but other people she’d spoken to said it was rubbish, that you don’t feel different, that the only reason they ever suspected was because their period was late. And Julia has spoken to many other people. Many, many, many, because making a baby has become an obsession, succeeding in making a baby her mission in life. She will gladly speak to friends of friends, distant colleagues, total strangers, in a bid to find out how it is done, how she can make it work. As easy as she finds it to approach strangers, to quiz them on the most intimate subjects (which, luckily, mothers don’t seem to mind, all privacy and intimacy having presumably been removed from their lives at some point on the operating table), is as hard as she finds it to be around people she actually knows who have children. Stupid. Selfish. Self-obsessed. Julia feels all these things, and yet she knows she cannot handle it. Cannot handle the pain when she sees those precious children, cannot handle the ugly side of herself, the only side of herself that emerges on those occasions. She has managed to admit to Sam her true feelings: she is jealous and angry over other people’s abilities to have children. Not strangers, she can happily be around strangers and their children. But friends? Family? There have been times when Julia has been filled with hateful fury. Furious hate. There have been times when she has not been able to speak, so overwhelmed with this anger that she has been scared it will project from her mouth in a stream of malicious invective. Don’t hate Julia for it. She is not a bad person. She’s a woman filled with jealousy and resentment, a woman who hates herself for it, but cannot help it. Hates herself for avoiding situations where she will see people she knows who have children. Avoids family parties because her brother-in-law’s sister has a ten-month-old girl called Jessica. She last saw Jessica when Jessica was three months old, and Julia had not yet discovered she might have a problem having a Jessica of her own. She held Jessica and felt her heart swell with joy, but she can’t hold her now. She can’t see Jessica’s parents, because she so resents them for being able to have her. Time, she prays. It is surely just a question of time before she gets pregnant and she will be able to have a baby of her own. Once upon a long time ago, Julia had an abortion. She hadn’t thought about it for years. Recently she finds she thinks about it an awful lot. What she thinks most is that there is nothing wrong with her. She has been pregnant. This is not her fault. And if it’s not her fault, then whose fault must it be? She tries not to dwell on that one, frightened of where it might lead. And still she stops mothers and asks for their tips, still she tries every old wives tale in a bid to become pregnant. The latest is this position, this legs in the air position. This was passed on by a woman in the children’s playground. (Yet another place she has been frequenting, eyes filling up with tears as she watches chubby little bodies toddling around, mouths filled with sand from the sandbox while their mothers are too engrossed in chat to notice. Just for the record, Julia thinks as she sits on the bench, she wouldn’t be too engrossed. Just for the record, she would be the perfect mother). The woman sitting next to her had four children, and this was her tip: Legs in the air for five minutes, not a second less. Julia doesn’t believe five minutes is long enough for sperm to reach their destination, so she has taken to lying like this for an hour, Mark quietly snoring beside her as she re-reads her books on getting pregnant. Creative visualisation. That’s another one. From time to time she lays the book down by her side, closes her eyes, and visualises those sperm, fighting their way along the fallopian tubes to meet the egg, and sometimes she thinks so hard, she believes she can actually feel it happening. In fact, is it happening now . . .? Could that be . . .? Is it . . . ? Please God, she prays, let this work. Please God let me have a baby. Let the More To Life Than This be fertilized even as I lie here with my eyes tightly shut. Just in case you’re wondering, Julia hasn’t been to see anyone, a fertility expert, anyone like that. God no, she would say. Not yet. On a good day she will tell herself that it’s only been nine months, really not that serious. Tonight, as she practises her creative visualisation with her legs in the air, Julia can swear she can feel something happening. Not that she’s entirely sure, but this time she thinks they really might have done it. The author of bestsellers such as Mr Maybe, Bookends, Jemima J and Straight Talking, Jane Green shot to fame as one of the leaders in women
Data wydania: 2001
ISBN: 978-0-14-029593-1, 9780140295931
Język: angielski
Wydawnictwo: Penguin Books
Kategoria: Literatura piękna
Mamy 2 inne wydania tej książki


Jane Green Jane Green Jane Green – urodzona w Londynie bestsellerowa pisarka doskonale znana polskim czytelnikom dzięki powieściom Babyville (Zysk i S-ka, 2008) i Zamiana miejsc (Zysk i S-ka, 2007). Green, z zawodu dziennikarka, pewnego dnia postanowiła postawić wszystko ...

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7 /10
Przeczytane * Własne Obyczajowe/Przygodowe/Dramaty Oblicza macierzyństwa

"Babyville" to trzy historie, a raczej historie trzech kobiet, oscylujące wokół motywu dziecka. Macierzyństwo będzie tu postrzegane odmiennie przez każdą z bohaterek, bo znajdują się one na różnym etapie w tym względzie.
Julia usilnie stara się zajść w ciąże, mimo iż zdaje sobie sprawę, że jej drogi z partnerem zaczynają się rozchodzić po czterech wspólnie spędzonych latach. Czy dziecko może stanowić spoiwo i za wszelką cenę przedłużać związek? Zresztą czy aby nasza bohaterka nr 1 na pewno jest przekonana do macierzyństwa, skoro zamiast zasięgać porady u lekarzy odprawia czary. I to dosłownie. Czasem niewłaściwy partner lub nieodpowiedni czas albo nasze nastawienie stają na przeszkodzie w osiągnięciu celu.
Drugą bohaterką jest Maeve. Singielka z wyboru, za wszelką cenę unikająca zaangażowania w związki oraz kłopotów w postaci dziecka będzie musiała zmienić dotychczasowe przyzwyczajenia, jak za dotknięciem czarodziejskiej różdżki, gdy okaże się, że jest w ciąży. Tylko czy pozwoli swojemu dziecku przyjść na świat? Jak ktoś kto szanuje wolność, kocha swoją pracę, w pełni realizuje sie w swoim życiu mógłby nagle zapragnąć tak drastycznej odmiany.
Ostatnią na liście jest Samantha, zamężna młoda mama, wręcz zakręcona na punkcie swojego dziecka. Ogromna miłość do dziecka może się w jej przypadku równać jedynie z nienawiścią do męża. To depresja tak skutecznie przysłania jej oczy, że naraża się na śmieszność w obecności innych.

Powieść jest podzielona na tr...

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5 /10

Bardzo fajne czytadło. Do czytania na szybko bez potrzeby skupiania się. Historia trzech kobiet i ich perypetii związanych z dziećmi. Jedna chce mieć, ale nie może, druga nie chce, ale ma, trzecia chce i ma, ale... Widać, że autorka przez to przeszła, w wielu sytuacjach odnalazłam swoje odczucia, swoje myśli, to, co mi się przydarzyło. Widać, że na całym świecie faceci są tacy sami i kobiety są takie same, i dzieci są takie same... Przeczytałam, zapomnę, ale czytało się fajnie.

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5 /10
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