A Ladder to the Sky by John Boyne

A Ladder to the Sky

The new novel from the beloved New York Times bestselling author of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas and The Heart's Invisible Furies , a seductive Highsmithian psychodrama following one brilliant, ruthless man who will stop at nothing in his pursuit of fame Maurice Swift is handsome, charming, and hungry for success. The one thing he doesn't have is talent - but he's not about to let a detail like that stan...

Details A Ladder to the Sky

TitleA Ladder to the Sky
Release DateNov 13th, 2018
PublisherHogarth Press
GenreFiction, Contemporary, Literary Fiction

Reviews A Ladder to the Sky

  • Meredith
    THIS BOOK WOWED ME!!! Meet Maurice Swift whose single purpose in life is to become a famous novelist. Beware: Maurice is a story thief. He will steal your stories, and, in essence, your soul. Maurice will do whatever it takes to get to the top but he was one major problem standing in his way--he lacks creativity. While he can write, his stories are boring….Ever the resourceful one, Maurice uses his physical beauty and charm to leach onto famo...
  • Paromjit
    It is a story that is as old as time itself, common in our human history and a major source of inspiration for writers, producing great literature, from the likes of Shakespeare to Patricia Highsmith's Tom Ripley, the unleashing of a ferocious, power hungry ambition, nakedly unfettered, ruthless as it wreaks tragedy and destruction in its wake, doing whatever is deemed necessary to achieve the sought after obsessive dream. After the brilliance of...
  • Larry H
    When you get ready to read a book by an author whose two previous books wound up at the top of your year-end best lists (and they're truly among some of the best books you've read, at least in the last decade), you get a little nervous whether lightning will strike thrice, or whether you're putting too much pressure on the book. (I am the one who has preached measured expectations when reading new books by favorite authors, because each new book ...
  • Elyse
    In the same way Vampires hunger for blood, protagonist *Maurice Swift*, hungers for stories. John Boyne has created a literary Vampire! Swift will trade stories for organisms. He’s not wired sexually like most men. He has no desire for sex - with either men or women. Sex is just one of his power tools to achieve his needs: STORIES! Maurice is a writer who can’t for the life of him think of a ‘story’ to write about. Yet - Maurice is driven...
  • Tammy
    Dark and delectable, Boyne’s latest novel is compulsively readable. Maurice has one consuming desire and that is to be a wildly successful writer. Although he is able to craft sentences, he lacks the other critical element crucial to achieving his goal: imagination. What’s a poor boy to do? Well, he uses his physical beauty and manipulative charm to glom onto those who are in a position to help him. Maurice leapfrogs from person to person as ...
  • Peter
    MachiavellianJohn Boyne has this exceptional ability to place words on a page with such soul and meaning, that immediately you're immersed in a delicately unwinding story. Nothing is forced, everything flows naturally. The characters are developed with marvellous believability whilst illustrating intriguing relationships and entertaining dialogue. The dialogue provides so much animation, conveying that touch of humour, irony or jealousy, or sexua...
  • Diane S ☔
    Boynes, Hearts Invisible Furies turned out to be my favorite book of last year. In that one he gave me a character I absolutely loved, in this one he does the opposite. Here, he gives us a character one loves to hate, a young man devoid of any redeeming characteristics. Maurice Swift, a man who thinks that anything he does is justified. Nothing is his fault.Now I am the type of reader who enjoys being given a character who tugs at my heart, someo...
  • Felicia
    John Boyne could write a 500 page play-by-play account of the sleeping habits of the maned three-toed sloth that inhabits the Atlantic Forest of Brazil using only words that start with the letter Q and I have no doubt that it would be anything less than a compelling example of literary excellence.As is the norm in Boyne's stories, this book features a captivating protagonist, this time his name is Maurice Swift, a narcissist and quite possibly a ...
  • Paula Kalin
    Irish author John Boyne has written a masterpiece. A Ladder to the Sky is brilliant!Maurice Swift, is a so-so author who wants to succeed as a writer. It’s his lifetime ambition, and he doesn’t care how he gets there. Beautiful, charming, and ruthless, Maurice can’t come up with his own stories so he steals them. His first victim is Erich Ackermann who has received some literary fame. After using Erich’s personal story and destroying him,...
  • Debbie
    Grabbed my pogo stick at Part 2 and kept on hopping...This is so weird. I vigorously hated Part 1, yet I just as vigorously gave the book 5 stars. What’s up with THAT? The book starts with an old writer man lusting over a young writer man who will stop at nothing to get ahead. Scathing conversations, immoral acts, a cynical vibe, just nasty people doing and saying nasty things to each other in the publishing world—it was all just too depressi...
  • Carol
    Oh Yes. Another 5 Star Winner! Oh the power of beauty....and John Boyne's addictive writing....once again! Meet Maurice Swift....you won't forget him! He wants to be a famous author. He's just a young man of 17 when first introduced, but is already hungry for attention and fame from the literary world. AND, oh yeah, he is a downright heart throbbing, mesmerizing beauty of a man....desired by both species....and dam well knows it! As this bloodsuc...
  • Dem
    A dark and compelling read, John Boye's latest novel introduces us to the despicable yet interesting character of Maurice an attractive young man who wants to be a famous writer and he uses and abuses his contacts and family to get exactly what he wants in life After reading the blurb of this novel I wasn't too sure if I wanted to read this one or not as the story line just didn't appeal to me but John Boyne writing always lures me in and I just...
  • Andrew Smith
    A finely crafted piece of literary fiction or a cheap throw-away psychological thriller? Or both? Or maybe neither? I’m still weighing up my thoughts on this, but either way I found this book hugely enjoyable.In this cleverly structured novel we first observe an ageing writer who is visiting Berlin as part of a European tour to discuss his work. The writer reflects on his life of celibacy – he being a homosexual who, it seems, has never found...
  • Debra
    Wowza!John Boyne keeps getting better and better! Each time he writes a book, he tops his last. A ladder to the Sky has done just that. This book is beautifully written, tragic, compelling and hard to put down. Boyne has given me a character that I love to hate. Maurice Swift is so deliciously "amoral". Maurice is willing to do whatever it takes to be a bestselling Author. Armed with his youth and beauty, he sets out to achieve his goals, no look...
  • Pauline
    A Ladder to the Sky by John Boyne is the story of Maurice Swift who dreams of being a best selling author. Unfortunately he has yet to write a book that is good enough to be published but nothing will stop him and he will do anything to achieve his dream.I found this books slow to start and almost gave up but I'm so glad that I didn't because from part two I was hooked. This story made me cry, it also made me smile. I really enjoyed it.
  • Amanda
    I didn’t realise just how good this book was going to be, this is my first John Boyd novel and to put it bluntly “it blew my tiny mind away”When novelist Erich Ackerman writes his 6th novel, “Dread” and is finally recognised for his work, he a meets handsome young waiter called Maurice, aged 22 and a wannabe writer, who he takes on as his personal assistant. This is helped more by the fact that he finds him attractive and less by the qu...
  • JanB
    There’s a proverb that says ambition “is like putting a ladder against the sky. It’s a pointless waste of energy."Told in three parts, this book shows the complete degradation of a person when blind ambition is coupled with psychopathic tendencies. An author must be a keen observer of people and events. They can take a nugget of an idea, then use their imagination to turn it into a story.  But what happens when the only person you are ...
  • Cheri
    ” Oh, got no reason, got no shameGot no family I can't blameJust don't let me disappearI'mma tell you everything”Tell me what you want to hearSomething that will light those earsSick of all the insincereI'm gonna give all my secrets awayThis time, don't need another perfect lieDon't care if critics ever jump in lineI'm gonna give all my secrets away” -- Secrets, OneRepublic, Songwriters: Ryan Tedder"'Will you walk into my parlour?' said the...
  • Bianca
    I was eagerly anticipating the new novel from John Boyne, as I loved The Heart’s Invisible Furies. I’d like to thank Random House UK, Transworld Publishers for the opportunity to read an advanced copy.A Ladder to the Sky is a dark novel about Maurice Swift and his ambitions. A strikingly beautiful man, Maurice is determined to become a successful writer and to have a child. He’s cognizant of the power of his looks, which he uses diligently ...
  • Marialyce
    5 superior candid starsMy reviews can be seen here: https://yayareadslotsofbooks.wordpres...I have always been enamored with John Boyle's novels. He constantly is upping his game as he flirts from the compassionate, sad moving characters in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, to the beloved characters in The Heart's Invisible Furies, to the devious, cunning narcissist in A Ladder to the Sky. This multi talented author managed to once again enthrall m...
  • Rebecca Foster
    A delicious piece of literary suspense with a Tom Ripley-like hero you’ll love to hate: Maurice Swift, who wants nothing more than to be a writer but doesn’t have any ideas of his own, so steals them from other people. I loved how we see this character from several outside points of view – first Erich Ackerman, whose Nazi-era history provides the basis for Maurice’s first novel; then Gore Vidal, to whose Italian home Maurice pays a visit ...
  • Sharon Metcalf
    If you loved Hearts Invisible Furies because Cyril was so loveable then you could be in for a rude shock when you meet Maurice Swift.    They're at opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to likeability.   Who's Maurice Swift you might ask?   He's the protagonist in John Boynes latest novel Ladder To The Sky.    He's incredibly good looking, he's  bursting at the seams with ambition but this guy would stop at nothing - and I do mea...
  • ♥ Sandi ❣
    4 stars Thanks to NetGalley and Hogarth Press for allowing me to read and review this ARC. Publication November 13, 2018This may be book that you will love to hate, or hate to love? Boyne did a fabulous job on the three separate chapters. He pulled them all together by high-lighting one person, Maurice Swift. Each chapter told by a different person, each chapter a different period in life, and each chapter more absorbing than the last. Maurice Sw...
  • Rachel
    I couldn't have gone into A Ladder to the Sky with higher expectations; John Boyne set the bar pretty high with his last novel The Heart's Invisible Furies - my favorite 2017 release and easily one of the best books I've ever read - and though it doesn't quite live up to that standard, A Ladder to the Sky was every bit as enthralling as I hoped it would be. The novel follows Maurice Swift, a young aspiring writer who desires success at all costs,...
  • Kasa Cotugno
    The mcguffin in this ingenious book is "The Award." Unnamed, but, really, does it need to be? Especially with all references to "long-listed", even more desirable, "short-listed," leading to the heights of WINNER. There have been several hilarious takes on the Award itself, most notably Amis's The Information and St. Aubyn's Lost for Words. Here is one of my favorite authors delving into the lengths one will go or rather depths one will plummet i...
  • switterbug (Betsey)
    After I read Irish author John Boyne’s last book, THE HEART’S INVISIBLE FURIES, I was hooked. The primary theme was about family—the ones you are born with and the ones you create, as well as the redemptive power of the human spirit. Boyne’s prose is warm, accessible, thoroughly engaging, and page-turning. He manages to fuse the métier of writing literature with the pacing and excitement of mainstream storytelling, without forfeiting ori...
  • Karen
    John Boyne has done it again for me with this story! Maurice Swift is highly ambitious in his quest to be a great writer... so ambitious, that he really becomes one of the most despicable characters that I’ve ever encountered in a novel! This is a dark story of seduction and literary theft, that will keep you reading to find out what this guy will do next! Read it and enjoy!Thank you to Netgalley and Random House for the ARC!
  • Anni
    … you’ve heard the old proverb about ambition, haven’t you?’ He shook his head. ‘That it’s like setting a ladder to the sky. A pointless waste of energy. There are three narrators to this ingenious study of sexual obsession and psychological exploitation, one of whom is the manipulative central character. Although I know of one best-selling author who was accused of a similar crime to that of Boyne’s protagonist, this fictional soci...
  • marilyn
    As I read the differences between a sociopath and a psychopath, I still can't determine which of those terms define Maurice Swift because he fits the worst parts each personality disorder. Maurice is a horrible person and is only concerned with getting what he wants. What Maurice wants most is fame and success as a writer and the fact that he steals ideas and actual written works and destroys lives to achieve those things, does not concern him on...
  • Susan Johnson
    If there is a more thoughtful, intelligent story teller writing right now, I have no idea on who it is. Boyne's writing brings me to my knees with its excellence. "The Heart's Invisible Fury" was my favorite book last year by far and this one is my favorite book this year. It is hard to imagine anything will come along that will touch me more this one. After reading several interviews he has given about this book, I understand the rawness and pai...