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A Beautiful Truth

McAdam, Colin (Book - 2013)
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
A Beautiful Truth
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"A powerful and haunting meditation on human nature told from the dual perspectives of a Vermont family that has adopted a chimp as a surrogate son, and a group of chimpanzees in a Florida research institute. Looee, a chimp raised by a well-meaning and compassionate human couple who cannot conceive a baby of their own, is forever set apart. He's not human, but with his peculiar upbringing he is no longer like other chimps. One tragic night Looee's two natures collide and their unique family is forever changed. At the Girdish Institute in Florida, a group of chimpanzees has been studied for decades. The work at Girdish has proven that chimps have memories and solve problems, that they can learn language and need friends, and that they build complex cultures. They are political, altruistic, get angry, and forgive. When Looee is moved to the Institute, he is forced to try to find a place in their world. A Beautiful Truth is an epic and heartfelt story about parenthood, friendship, loneliness, fear and conflict, about the things we hold sacred as humans and how much we have in common with our animal relatives. A novel of great heart and wisdom from a literary master, it exposes the yearnings, cruelty, and resilience of all great apes"-- "Told simultaneously from the perspective of humans and chimpanzees, set in a Vermont home and a Florida primate research facility, A Beautiful Truth--at times brutal, other times deeply moving--is about the simple truths that transcend species, the meaning of family, the lure of belonging, and the capacity for survival. A powerful and haunting meditation on human nature told from the dual perspectives of a Vermont family that has adopted a chimp as a surrogate son, and a group of chimpanzees in a Florida research institute. Looee, a chimp raised by a well-meaning and compassionate human couple who cannot conceive a baby of their own, is forever set apart. He's not human, but with his peculiar upbringing he is no longer like other chimps. One tragic night Looee's two natures collide and their unique family is forever changed. At the Girdish Institute in Florida, a group of chimpanzees has been studied for decades. The work at Girdish has proven that chimps have memories and solve problems, that they can learn language and need friends, and that they build complex cultures. They are political, altruistic, get angry, and forgive. When Looee is moved to the Institute, he is forced to try to find a place in their world. A Beautiful Truth is an epic and heartfelt story about parenthood, friendship, loneliness, fear and conflict, about the things we hold sacred as humans and how much we have in common with our animal relatives. A novel of great heart and wisdom from a literary master, it exposes the yearnings, cruelty, and resilience of all great apes"--
Authors: McAdam, Colin
Title: A beautiful truth
Publisher: New York :, Soho Press,, [2013]
Characteristics: 292 pages ;,24 cm
Content Type: text
Media Type: unmediated
Carrier Type: volume
Notes: "A novel" --Book jacket
Summary: "A powerful and haunting meditation on human nature told from the dual perspectives of a Vermont family that has adopted a chimp as a surrogate son, and a group of chimpanzees in a Florida research institute. Looee, a chimp raised by a well-meaning and compassionate human couple who cannot conceive a baby of their own, is forever set apart. He's not human, but with his peculiar upbringing he is no longer like other chimps. One tragic night Looee's two natures collide and their unique family is forever changed. At the Girdish Institute in Florida, a group of chimpanzees has been studied for decades. The work at Girdish has proven that chimps have memories and solve problems, that they can learn language and need friends, and that they build complex cultures. They are political, altruistic, get angry, and forgive. When Looee is moved to the Institute, he is forced to try to find a place in their world. A Beautiful Truth is an epic and heartfelt story about parenthood, friendship, loneliness, fear and conflict, about the things we hold sacred as humans and how much we have in common with our animal relatives. A novel of great heart and wisdom from a literary master, it exposes the yearnings, cruelty, and resilience of all great apes"--
"Told simultaneously from the perspective of humans and chimpanzees, set in a Vermont home and a Florida primate research facility, A Beautiful Truth--at times brutal, other times deeply moving--is about the simple truths that transcend species, the meaning of family, the lure of belonging, and the capacity for survival. A powerful and haunting meditation on human nature told from the dual perspectives of a Vermont family that has adopted a chimp as a surrogate son, and a group of chimpanzees in a Florida research institute. Looee, a chimp raised by a well-meaning and compassionate human couple who cannot conceive a baby of their own, is forever set apart. He's not human, but with his peculiar upbringing he is no longer like other chimps. One tragic night Looee's two natures collide and their unique family is forever changed. At the Girdish Institute in Florida, a group of chimpanzees has been studied for decades. The work at Girdish has proven that chimps have memories and solve problems, that they can learn language and need friends, and that they build complex cultures. They are political, altruistic, get angry, and forgive. When Looee is moved to the Institute, he is forced to try to find a place in their world. A Beautiful Truth is an epic and heartfelt story about parenthood, friendship, loneliness, fear and conflict, about the things we hold sacred as humans and how much we have in common with our animal relatives. A novel of great heart and wisdom from a literary master, it exposes the yearnings, cruelty, and resilience of all great apes"--
ISBN: 1616953152
9781616953157
Statement of Responsibility: Colin McAdam
Subject Headings: FICTION / Family Life FICTION / Psychological FICTION / Literary Human-animal relationships Fiction Chimpanzees Psychology Fiction Chimpanzees as pets Fiction Chimpanzees Fiction Parenthood Fiction
Genre/Form: Psychological fiction
Topical Term: FICTION Family Life
FICTION Psychological
FICTION Literary
Human-animal relationships
Chimpanzees
Chimpanzees as pets
Chimpanzees
Parenthood
LCCN: 2013019856
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Oct 08, 2013
  • mclarjh rated this: 2.5 stars out of 5.

The greatest artistic accomplishment in this genre since the release of "Planet of the Apes"!

All the "right actions" that do wrong to the chimps will break your heart and question it. Very thought provoking novel. My own discomfort at the babying of Louee turned to fascination with Mr Ghoul's situation. Lots of ethical questions, the novel makes you feel loss, value family and culture, and question what it means to be human.

May 20, 2013
  • GLNovak rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

My first thought after I finished this book was "what was this about?" We are introduced to a childless couple, then to an experimental primate lab worker, then to some chimpanzees, then to a single chimpanzee, then here then there. I got a little confused but kept reading. I got a little nauseated but kept reading. I got bewildered at the author's point of it all but kept reading. I think I persevered hoping that I would find the beginning, middle and end of the narrative - but that never happened. The narrative was quite flat, emotionless, and the story kind of petered out. What was it all about? Biography? Is man only a primate? Are chimpanzees the same as man? Is experimentation wrong/right? Is exotic animal adoption wrong/right? Does experimentation affect both subjects and scientists? Perhaps this is the objective - to make our minds fly out all over the place. I was left feeling something was definitely missing in the execution of this story.

May 02, 2013
  • mdsvpl rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Excellent Novel!
Particularly interesting to also hear from chimps' point of view!

May 02, 2013
  • smc01 rated this: 1 stars out of 5.

I can't recall when I have been more disappointed in a novel. The premise seemed so interesting but was not well executed. Read The Chimps of Fauna Sanctuary by Andrew Westoll instead.

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