The Danish Girl

The Danish Girl

A Novel

Book - 2015
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Loosely inspired by a true story, this tender portrait of marriage asks: What do you do when the person you love has to change? It starts with a question, a simple favor asked by a wife of her husband while both are painting in their studio, setting off a transformation neither can anticipate. Uniting fact and fiction into an original romantic vision, The Danish Girl eloquently portrays the unique intimacy that defines every marriage and the remarkable story of Lili Elbe, a pioneer in transgender history, and the woman torn between loyalty to her marriage and her own ambitions and desires. The Danish Girl's lush prose and generous emotional insight make it, after the last page is turned, a deeply moving first novel about one of the most passionate and unusual love stories of the 20th century.
Publisher: New York, New York : Penguin Books, 2015
Copyright Date: ©2000
ISBN: 9780143108399
Branch Call Number: EBERSHO
Characteristics: 270 pages ; 21 cm


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Aug 26, 2018

Set during the 1930s, this is an elegantly written tale about a romantic marriage between a woman and a trans-gendered woman. Very loosely based on a true story, Ebershoff's tragic characters are both vivid and realistic. I also enjoyed the many clever details about the chic western European setting.

ArapahoeKirsten Mar 24, 2017

A well-written fictionalization of an interesting person in a different time. I admired the strength of the relationships between the characters, and wanted all of them to achieve what they desired. Suspenseful and intimate.

Aug 29, 2016

Some of the strongest and most compassionate characters in literary history. Greta became my hero and I wanted Lili to get her heart's desire so badly!

Jun 24, 2016

I got confused if the man or the women were speaking the transition was weird

Nov 17, 2015

This is a fantastic novel--beautifully written historical fiction that creates a very strong sense of place and time and explores two very distinctive characters and the subtle shifts of power within their relationship. The sentences are gorgeous, but not distracting, and I raced through the novel wanting to see how the character would grow and change. Ebershoff also manages the difficult job of plausibly imagining how two people from a very different time might have thought about being intersex and transgender at a time when their was no public conversation about those ways of being.
My only caveat: the novel is so much of its era it wouldn't be useful for readers who don't know anything about intersex & trans people and are looking for an introduction to those experiences; Lili's analogs today live in a vastly different world that understands and misunderstands them differently. But I can't fault a novel for serving its characters instead of public education.

Oct 12, 2013

Hmmm The audio reader isn't the best & the first chapter just put me off. Boring conversations between man/wife. Not a recommend unless you want some fairly explicit explanation of acts I'd rather not hear about.

Oct 13, 2012

This book reads more like a travelogue than a novel. The sentences are overly long, often wandering off topic. It totally misrepresents the actual relationship between the couple.

Jun 18, 2012

An unusual story, beautifully written.

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