Web Of Angels by Lilian NattelWeb Of Angels by Lilian Nattel

Web Of Angels

byLilian Nattel

Paperback | February 28, 2012

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Just as Jodi Picoult tackles controversial contemporary issues in her compelling domestic dramas, in Web of Angels bestselling novelist Lilian Nattel explores the vivid reality of what used to be called multiple personality disorder. A Vintage Canada trade paperback original.
 
On the surface of things, Sharon Lewis is a lot like any other happily married mother of 3: she is the beating heart of a house full of kids, cooking and chaos, the one who always knows the after-school practice schedule, where her husband put the car keys and who needs a little extra TLC. Her kids and husband think she's a little spooky, actually, the way she can anticipate the tensions of any situation--and maybe they love her all the more for the extra care she gives them.
 
Life is definitely good until the morning Heather Edwards, a pregnant teenaged friend of the family, kills herself. The reverberations of that act, and the ugly secrets that sparked it, prove deeply unsettling to the whole family, and stir up Sharon's own troubling secret: she has DID, or dissociative identity disorder. And the multiples inside the woman the world knows as Sharon seem to know what happened to Heather, and what may be happening to Heather's surviving sister. Will Sharon's need to protect the innocent cause her to finally come clean about her true nature with her family and friends, and not just in the anonymous chat rooms on the web where she's connected to others like herself? Will a woman with DID be able to persuade her quiet and respectable community that evil things can happen even in the nicest homes?
LILIAN NATTEL was born in Montreal and now lives in Toronto with her husband and 2 daughters. She is the author of The River Midnight and The Singing Fire.
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Title:Web Of AngelsFormat:PaperbackDimensions:368 pages, 8 × 5.5 × 1 inPublished:February 28, 2012Publisher:Knopf CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0307402096

ISBN - 13:9780307402097

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Reviews

Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good, not great view all 8 status updates Review 3.5 stars This book was all over the place... there were SO many characters to deal with that it made it horribly confusing. The first half of the book was also very boring, in my opinion... I know that you have to lay a good foundation for stories but it just seemed to take forever to figure out where this one was headed. The second half of the book was much better and is what allowed for me to give this book a 3.5/5. I love how the story came together but really wish that there had been more focus on the end of the story... trying not to include any spoilers. All in, I'm glad that I read it but I wouldn't really mark is as a 'must' read.
Date published: 2016-11-28
Rated 3 out of 5 by from An On the Fence Thriller 3.5 stars This book was all over the place... there were SO many characters to deal with that it made it horribly confusing. The first half of the book was also very boring, in my opinion... I know that you have to lay a good foundation for stories but it just seemed to take forever to figure out where this one was headed. The second half of the book was much better and is what allowed for me to give this book a 3.5/5. I love how the story came together but really wish that there had been more focus on the end of the story... trying not to include any spoilers. All in, I'm glad that I read it but I wouldn't really mark is as a 'must' read.
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Unexpected This book was a page turner for me. Psychological mystery, it kept me guessing. I found the end to be quite disturbing...too disturbing.
Date published: 2015-01-17
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A bit confusing, and lacked a tight storyline CONFUSING. This book BEGS for a more tightly written story line. I understood the need for it to seem a little scattered overall, as to match the main character's lack of emotional and mental control, but whoa..it could have used a lot more structure. The subject matter is highly disturbing in this novel, and may not bode well for the faint of heart-I damn near lost of control of mine towards the conclusion. Sharon suffers from a mentally complex disorder known as DID (dissociative identity disorder). At first, I mistakenly thought this was going to be similar to those suffering from schizophrenia, but it turned out to a HELL of a lot more confusing. I was lost from pretty much the first page. I got through it by slowing my pace, and paying closer attention to when Sharon changed into one of her alter personalities-there was warning, but very little. Aside from that aspect, which I am I not faulting-it was just a little hard to follow-the story line happening outside of Sharon's mind was just as choppy. I felt like as the reader, we were were only following the perspective of Sharon, and her "multiples."-like we were only allowed inside of HER head. I would have liked to delve deeper into the minds and story lines of the side characters, particularly her husband, Dan. I really enjoyed his sincerity and patience, and would have loved to know what was going on in his head. Abuse, especially when physical or sexual, is always something I have a hard time getting through, and I think the author did a great job of exposing the horrible details of truth in a more subtle, yet impactful, way. I only wish the first half moved as quickly as the last. It was pretty clear what the twist was from very early on, but the author stretched the mystery for longer than necessary. I also found some of the details to be a little unrealistic, especially what some others have pointed out in their reviews: the similarities between Sharon and Cathy were just too spot on. How likely is it that you have an exact life double living just next door? I could have done without some of the poetics in this novel. I appreciate the research and thought that the author put into it, but I just wanted more meat and less mind fluff. This was not an easy read, and not just in the sense that it was a little hard to follow, but the content was stomach turning. I would recommend this to those who are curious to know of the real life demons lurking within our society. This book was a work of fiction, but the ideas were taken straight from our own backyards.
Date published: 2013-02-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A beautiful read This is a beautiful book and so very well-written. I didn't quite expect to be thrown in to the storyline so quickly, to be honest, the back of the book makes it sound much more gradual. Almost immediately you are thrown in to Sharon/Lyssa/Alec/Callisto/etc.'s world, trying to keep the personalities and characters straight. But it's wonderful to read, how Sharon deals with all of it and having to face her past and being a multiple, and how her family reacts in the face of dissociative identity disorder. I know very little of DID, and I don't know if this is how it truly manifests in a person or if that part is fiction, but it makes me want to know. If it is true, then this book should act as an inspiration to those suffering and they should share it with their loved ones so they better understand themselves. But the book is not just about DID, it is also about the importance of family and community support, not just for someone with DID, but for anyone who is need to help and support (to say more would mean spoilers). I read this book quickly and enjoyed every page. A beautiful, uplifting book that I would strongly recommend.
Date published: 2013-01-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Stunning Portrait Web of Angels was a book club selection, and I'm not sure why, but I was expecting something a lot lighter than what this novel delivered. Im not one to shy away from heavy reading, but due to some of the graphic descriptions in this book, I wish I'd had a heads up. That being said, this novel is very well executed. If you have ever wondered what it must be like living with DID (aka multiple personality disorder), look no further. I suspect this is a very accurate portrayal. I did find the beginning slightly confusing because of the multiples. I wasn't always sure if I was reading one of Sharon's personalities, or another character in the book, but once I got my bearings, and the characters started to develop, it was clear. It also took awhile for the "story" to get rolling, but once it does, you can't walk away. Even when I was squirming, and had to put it down during some of the descriptions of abuse, it called me back. I can recommend this book, however if you are sensitive to descriptions of sexual abuse, you should proceed with caution, you are solidly invested in the characters by the time you get there.
Date published: 2012-07-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A riveting and realistic drama about multiple personality It's amazing to me that a sensitive, hopeful, and at times romantic writer like Liliaan Nattel could choose to live with such difficult material long enough to write the haunting book Web of Angels. The contrast between poignant domestic life and the horrors behind closed doors is what gives this book its magnetism. I'm riveted by stories about multiple personality -- Nattel has given us one that marries realism with drama.
Date published: 2012-03-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing As a child that grew up with a DID parent I found Lilian Nattel's book to be very realistic, and also helpful for me to be able to understand my mom in a way that I haven't been able to before. Nattel's book was beautifully written, and very accurate, a great read for somebody that just wants a good book, or if you are interested in learned more about DID and how life is for a regular mom with DID.
Date published: 2012-03-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A fascinating, compelling read. Realistic portrayal of the inner life of someone with DID A wonderful read! As a therapist who works with dissociative clients, I can say that not only is this book compelling in a "can't put it down" sort of way, but it also is a very realistic portrayal of the inner life of someone with dissociative identity disorder. Sensitive topics are covered in a non graphic matter. Highly recommended!
Date published: 2012-03-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AMAZING book!!!!! DID (dissociative identity disorder) is something that we have heard and learned more about in recent years, so I thought it was great that Nattel decided to use this as her subject matter. I found it absolutely fascinating to read about and I could not wait to figure out where the book was going. I absolutely loved it and had a really hard time putting it down. I ABSOLUTELY recommend this book, but it is not for the weak of heart. The subject matter can be a bit intense in parts and sensitive readers should probably steer clear. I hope you love this book as much as I did!
Date published: 2012-02-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Web of Angels I loved this book so much that I've asked Lilian Nattel to offer a guest blog in February 2012 on my site at: www.gailanderson-dargatz.ca. Here's my blurb: Right from the first sentence, Web of Angels is astonishing, shocking, loving. Lilian Nattel leads us in an exploration of how our communities cope with deep heartache, the loss of our young, and how we, as individuals, cope with trauma and the communities we carry within ourselves. Step into this novel and you will find yourself submerged; wake from it, and you will find yourself transformed. Web of Angels is a rare gift, perfectly named; within this novel, Lilian Nattel has offered us the work, the weave, of angels.
Date published: 2011-12-07

Read from the Book

On a narrow street in the grey of dawn, in a row house with stained glass, a sixteen-year-old girl lay motionless. Her hair was blonde, short, gelled in spikes, her legs unshaven, her pink nightgown straining over a nine-month belly. Her sister leaned against her, whispering her name, while far away in a watery world, the baby opened her eyes. She tried to turn the other way, her heart beating quicker as she searched for the sound of her mother’s heart. She kicked hard, but she was wedged downward, stuck. All she could do was wait, watching shadows darkly drifting. Watching light shine crimson through a membrane. And while she waited, the sun rose through a veil of sleet, rainwater licked the gutters in front of her house, alarm clocks rang up and down the nearby streets. The house was in Seaton Grove, a city neighbourhood south of the railroad tracks, a refuge for academics and artists with kids. They’d given up protests and all-night cafés and wearing black to renovate tall, gaunt houses with peculiar wiring and gasping plumbing. They sank into Seaton Grove, they nestled into it, a village annexed in 1888 by the growing city on the shore of Lake Ontario, a bubble of the golden age where cultures and races mixed and met, married and celebrated every tradition. As their houses rose in value and people who were better off bought into the neighbourhood, they felt confirmed in all their virtues. This was not the suburbs where trees were spindly and neighbours too far from each other to hear what went on behind closed doors. Here the streets were lined with old silver maples, lindens, cherry and mulberry. And though the trees were bare, sap was rising with a promise of shade and fruit for anyone who happened to look up. A block and a half from the railway tracks, in a house on Ontario Street, Sharon Lewis was lying in bed that Friday morning, listening to her husband, Dan, sing in the shower. Their bedroom was under the slanting roof, facing east, and as clouds broke up, the sun touched the curtains and the wall hanging and the cushions kicked onto the floor, colour springing back from the neutrality of night, gold and russet, earth colours in the velvety fabrics Sharon loved to touch. She sewed, she baked, both of which she enjoyed, and she kept the accounts for Dan’s company, which she did not. There were three children asleep on the second floor, a teenage son in his room at the back and little sisters in the front bedroom, a seven-year-old in the top bunk and a five-year-old in the bottom. There would have been more children if Dan hadn’t said enough is enough. He showered for exactly fifteen minutes, and at 7:15, when the second alarm rang, he turned the water off, dried himself and walked into the bedroom. He bent to kiss Sharon, whose eyes were still closed. He made her beautiful with his kiss, even though she believed she was too skinny, too fl at, too red-haired, too freckled, and now, at forty, too old to have another baby without the assistance of modern medicine. He’d just turned forty-two, his birthday on Groundhog Day. His father was Jewish, his mother Chinese, joining the planet’s least and most populous peoples who, in a symbiotic miracle, share the same taste in food. In Dan they’d produced a man of average height with brown hair, black eyes, a smooth chest and a mole on his shoulder, which Sharon regularly checked for changes. His teeth were perfect due to his own diligence, wearing out a toothbrush a month. He owned a company that ran fundraising campaigns for causes that were both good and respectable. “Did you call the plasterer?” he asked, getting cotton briefs and wool socks from the dresser. “I forgot.” “How could you forget?” From the wardrobe he extracted a freshly pressed shirt, polished shoes, a good suit and a hideous tie, which was a birthday present from the girls. They’d picked it out and paid for it on their own, making Sharon wait near the entrance of the dollar store. “It’s on the list,” he said as if she ought to notice a list on the fridge just because she knew exactly where everything was in the dining room, where she kept a mess of cloth and yarn in various stages of completion. A finished sweater was in a bag on the table. The quilting squares were on the third shelf of the cabinet. On the bottom shelf, in the back, was her money jar, with cash and cheques that she was always forgetting to deposit because her head was filled with too many thoughts, too many opinions, too many silent arguments. “Daddy, you’re wearing the tie!” Nina shouted as she ran into the bedroom, jumping on the bed, Emmie right behind her. “Of course,” he said. “It’s my birthday tie.” Her older daughter and her son both looked like Dan, and Sharon was glad of that. Only Emmie took after her, with curly red hair, green eyes, and chipmunk cheeks, pinchable cheeks that she would probably outgrow as Sharon had. She closed her eyes. Maybe she could sleep for another five minutes while they jumped on the bed. She’d been up late again, chatting online; morning always seemed so far away at midnight. “Mom! I can’t find my calculator,” Josh shouted up the stairs. Sharon kept her eyes closed. “You’d better get up,” Dan said. “You look,” Sharon said. “I’d just be wasting time. You’re the finder in the family.” He glanced at the mirror on the dressing table, giving his tie a twitch to straighten it. They’d celebrated Dan’s birthday at the rink in Christie Pits, yesterday. She was someone else skating, lithe and free and not shy at all. That was how she’d met Dan, by skating backward right into him, laughing as they both fell. They always celebrated Dan’s birthday by going skating with their children and his sister and her family, who lived around the corner. Yesterday Josh’s girlfriend, Cathy, had come, too, and afterward they’d all had cocoa at Magee’s. Cathy was his first girlfriend, and Sharon was glad she was a nice girl—her mother a doctor and her father a professor. The family lived near the public school. A thaw hinted at spring, mud under the sprinkling of snow. They’d gone home along Seaton Street, stopping to look at the funny house painted candy colours, the yard a display of plastic frogs and superheroes arranged around the fountain of the naked boy, turned off for the winter. A knife grinder had come along in his truck, his bell ringing, and stopped when the owner of the house flagged him down. Josh and Cathy had walked ahead of them, two gangly kids with skates slung over narrow shoulders, ignoring his sisters who’d followed making kissy noises. Cathy had a white jacket. How she kept it white was a mystery. She had straight blonde hair, too, and a perfectly straight part. Perhaps people with that kind of hair simply repel stains. “Mom!” “All right.” Sharon opened her eyes and sat up. “You can stop shouting, Josh!”

Editorial Reviews

NATIONAL BESTSELLER“Right from the first sentence, Web of Angels is astonishing, shocking, loving. Lilian Nattel leads us in an exploration of how our communities cope with deep heartache, the loss of our young, and how we, as individuals, cope with trauma and the communities we carry within ourselves. Step into this novel and you will find yourself submerged; wake from it, and you will find yourself transformed. Web of Angels is a rare gift, perfectly named; within this novel, Lilian Nattel has offered us the work, the weave, of angels.” ––Gail Anderson-Dargatz, author of The Cure for Death by Lightning, A Recipe for Bees and Turtle Valley “Groundbreaking, demanding, brave and beautiful. Web of Angels is a fiction about unspeakable evil rendered so (shockingly) true, the effect is devastating. The miracle is that, in Nattel’s hands, this book becomes a testimony to the fierce kindness in the human spirit, which battles evil and wins. Ultimately the book offers hope for what seems impossible: healing.” —Sheree Fitch, author of In This House Are Many Women and Kiss the Joy As It Flies