The House of Gentle Men by Kathy Hepinstall

The House of Gentle Men

In a year of war, sixteen-year-old Charlotte sets off on a mission of love in the backwoods of Louisiana, only to be violated by three soldiers in a lonely section of the forest. Charlotte's young life is destroyed, but another life is growing inside her. Years later, in peacetime, Charlotte comes to House of Gentle Men, a mysterious sanctuary where sad, damaged women are administered to by haunted men wishing to atone for their past crimes. Here...

Details The House of Gentle Men

TitleThe House of Gentle Men
Release DateFeb 6th, 2001
PublisherWilliam Morrow
GenreFiction, Historical, Historical Fiction, Romance

Reviews The House of Gentle Men

  • Laura
    To be totally honest, I thought this book was an insulting piece of crap. The only remotely interesting thing about it is the idea for the house itself -- in an attempt to win back the wife who left him, a man sets up a "house of gentle men". Men who have wronged women come to live at this house and try and redeem themselves, do penance, and find peace by "servicing" the women of the nearby town. They do not have sex with the women but kiss, carr...
  • Dooba
    I've seen both very positive and very negative reviews about this book. For me, this is one of the best books I ever had the pleasure to read. It's lyrical, poetic almost, with a lulling cadence that almost masks the horrors that take place in the lives of all the people involved. Almost, but not quite. Everyone has his own burden to bear. Not only Charlotte, whose voice was stolen with her innocence at that riverbank. Not only Justin, who came t...
  • Rachel
    I have had a lot of trouble sorting my feelings on this book. I don't know if it is a 1 star or a 5 star, so hence the 3 star. Here's the premise if you need a bit more from the blurb: (view spoiler)[Charlotte is raped by three men. She never sees who they are though. One of the men has enough of a conscience to feel guilty about it - but apparently not enough to have not done it in the first place? Near where Charlotte lives is a place called "T...
  • Dc
    This is the most disappointing book I've read in the last ten years. Not because the story line progresses at a glacial pace, not because the characters are predictable and lackluster, but because of how offensive it is to any man or woman who has fallen victim to sexual assault. Hepinstall trivializes rape. Rape victims do NOT fall in love with their rapists. The very thought is repulsive. Hepinstall needs a class in sensitivity training.
  • Vivian
    I am not a big fan of Kathy Hepinstall's writing. I hated "The Absence of Nectar", and this book didn't change my mind. The premise is extremely far fetched - a rape victim who unknowingly falls in love with her attacker. Readers have raved on and on about a story of love, loss and redemption. I was less enchanted. Ms. Hepinstall takes pieces of a puzzle and forces them together to form a neat little package for the ending. Happily ever after? No...
  • Sidna
    This is one of the worst books ever written! One of my book clubs read this book a couple of years ago, but I did not read it then. I bought a copy at our used book sale and had in my "to read" stack for over a year. Recently we were going on a trip and I looked for a paperback to read on the plane. I read this book on the plane, made notes so I could warn others not to read it, and dumped it in the trash at the airport as soon as I got off.Every...
  • Carole Lanham
    Kathy Hepinstall has the most beautiful voice. I found this book very haunting and lovely and wonderfully unique. The story moves rather like a mystery, revealing bits and pieces of heartache and drama from the past, even as characters and events hurtle toward a devastating conclusion. I felt a sense of dread as I read, and yet I couldn't put the book down. The writing is lyrical and lush as the Louisiana woods where the House of Gentle Men await...
  • Ashley
    This is one of the few books that I didn't finish because I just hated it that badly!It is horrible. It is creepy. It has lots of weird, dirty filth in it. The plot is strange and doesn't make sense. It's also boring. I can't say enough bad things about it. I read it almost a year ago, so I can't remember a lot of specifics, but I rarely stop reading a book because of pure hatred for it. Sometimes I stop reading because of boredom etc., but this ...
  • Saleh MoonWalker
    Onvan : The House of Gentle Men - Nevisande : Kathy Hepinstall - ISBN : 380809362 - ISBN13 : 9780380809363 - Dar 352 Safhe - Saal e Chap : 1999
  • Christie
    The House of Gentle Men has been on my radar for a long time. A few years back I read Hepinstall’s novel The Absence of Nectar which I liked quite a lot. There was something intriguing about the premise of The House of Gentle Men so I took a chance. I’m not sure that everyone in my book club would agree, but this book paid off for me.The House of Gentle Men is actually the name of an establishment run by Mr. Olen, a single father who is hopin...
  • Eric Hall
    Very well written book. The characters are fun, the conflict is entertaining, and the story is very well told.Kathy has a way with words. She's a throwback to times when well written books also meant that the language used was musical, almost like coherent poetry. That's how Kathy writes; it's a trait you will find in all her books. Kathy has a gift for immersing the reader in vivid imagery. She blends the environment into her stories in such a w...
  • Kimberly Westrope
    This is absolutely one of the best books I've read. It is a unique and beautifully written story of turmoil, betrayal, love, sacrifice, redemption, and forgiveness. Ms. Hepinstall's story shows us that love can originate where we least expect it and can overcome the most difficult obstacles, and heal the most broken of hearts. It really is a wonderful first novel. I can't wait to read her other books. I read this book two years ago and I still th...
  • Phair
    A very leisurely book- almost too slow. While there were some good passages (in particular the part on p 255: 'I am seized by soldiers and by butterflies') I ultimately came away unsatisfied and somewhat annoyed that the book did not meet my expectations.
  • Sarah Jayyn
    This is, hands down, my favorite book. I've read it five times. I would recommend to anyone.
  • Cheryl
    Very serange characters and general premise. I just had to finish it---call it a compulsion...
  • Michele
    I positively Loved this book! It was full of hope and redemption. The author writes in a language that kept me fastened to the page until the very end!
  • Celli
    Beautiful. One of the best, most beautifully written books I have ever read.
  • Joan
    A most unusual story. A place where women lacking and needing simple affection and closeness can go to find contentment in their sad and troubled lives. The men, looking for salvation for their past sins against women are expected to deliver whatever is asked of them - listening, dancing, caressing and kissing but not sex. Works wonderfully well until Justin arrives. He becomes the catalyst that will tear the house apart.
  • Chris
    Endings seem to be very hard for authors. It's true in this case, anyway. I liked almost the entire book, but it was spoiled by the ending!
  • Ruth Vanderhart
    Couldn't Couldn't get past page 100. Boring and poorly plotted.
  • Kay
    A good first novel. Not fabulous, but an interesting story. I plan to try one of her later books, as well.
  • Amanda
    Though I liked the first book I read by Hepinstall, "The Prince of Lost Places" I wasn't too sure how I would feel about this one. Had it followed the same plot vein, I might not have been overly impressed. But the story itself was amazing and the way it was told held my attention. It's been a long time since a book has held me in such a "can't put it down" way. After being raped by three soldiers as a teenager, Charlotte has become a mute, not o...
  • Steph
    This book was unlike an other that I've read before in concept. Centered around a house where woman go who seek the intimacy that has been replaced with complacency in their own relationships with men, and the men of the house who service them, seeking redeption from past sins through these acts of intimacy. I was really stirred by this book. I've thought a lot about this concept of women preferring ( furthermore, needing) intimacy (the men of th...
  • N
    this is going to have a massive amount of spoilers so be warnedbrilliant idea for a book, started well. I'm all for the 'they held her down and then later she walked away' type of description when it comes to rape, why oh why did Mizz Kathy think we needed to revisit it in detail in further chapters? Did she run out of things to say? Same goes for the Mother's death, either spell it out or don't, please don't do both!!! Now we have one set of sib...
  • Delene H. Allen
    I am intrigued by the title of Kathy Hepinstall’s, The House of Gentle Men. This surely must be a fictional place! Seriously, I easily give this book a 5-star rating. To give any book a fair review, I look at the character, theme, plot, style and setting. I focus on the book’s purpose, content, authority, and I evaluate the quality meaning and significance of what I have just read. Hepinstall nails it on every level. She draws the reader into...
  • Katie
    I was so torn on what rating to give this book. I finally settled on 3 stars, because, while the writing was gorgeous and the plot was well-developed, too many of the characters prevented me from truly loving this novel. Hepinstall packs quite a few characters into The House of Gentle Men, and I actually didn't find that to be a problem, because she somehow enables the reader to keep everyone straight. However, with the exception of Charlotte, Da...
  • Michelle
    The premise of this novel caught my attention immediately. Yes, it was of love, loss, forgiveness, innocence and corruption -- themes that have been explored countless times. But, this House of Gentle Men was an idea I hadn't heard of before and the theory of it is quite interesting to say the least. Each character in the novel has demons and each searches for something. What saves the novel from reading like an overly sentimental drama or worse-...
  • Linda Branham Greenwell
    The House of Gentle Men is a place where men who have hurt women can go to offer penance for what they did... and where women who have been hurt by men can go to be healed of their pain. Without giving too much of the plot away, Charlotte, who is raped by three soldiers a mere two weeks after witnessing her mother die in a fire started by Charlotte's brother, is unwittingly reunited at the House of Gentle Men with Justin, one of the soldiers who ...
  • Christine
    At first I thought this book about a house of male prostitution, which it kinda is, without the sex. Charlotte doesn't speak. She lives with her brother Milo, who I thought to be younger than her due to his antics. Milo likes fire. Then we meet Louise who is the obsessive compulsive daughter of the man who runs "The house of gentle men. She has a brother , Benjamin, who is young (teenager if I remember right) who woo's the women leaving the house...