I really enjoyed this book. More than enjoyed the book. The writing for me is captivating, descriptive and outstanding. I was surprised at first at some of the writing, meaning it was not expected. It reminded me of reading Virginia Woolf or Faulkner in the stream of consciousness writing style at times. It was unique but it had that feel to me at times, in addition feeling like a poem at times.
And all though I was surprised, it was certainly welcomed. By the time I got through 175 pages was no longer with a reading deadline, I savored the book, page by page. I literally read about 30 pages a day. Sometimes in my car at lunch I could just sit a few moments and think about a phrase, think about Sally, the River, Rondo, and the others in the story.
There is a very marvelously written and interesting audio diary in the story and I liked that point of view that was interjected into the story, along with Sally Jr's side of the story. I got caught up in this story of simple people, in simple towns in a not so simple situation. Maybe in the way that I enjoyed the smallness of the town in Empire Falls, by Richard Russo. There is a very long letter at the end of the book. I really liked that letter also. (being vague so as not to spoil).
For me the book got better and better as the page turned. Also it didn't have to be gripping or a page turner that kept me reading until I was done in one night. Like a gourmet meal, I was satisfied with a literary meal each night and read more the next day. Once this story clicked for me I found that I didn't want to pick up my knitting. I wanted to read this book. I really got transported to the time and setting in the book.
I loved the way the story centered around the Tuskee River. Books that have a central geographic tie into the story really seem be a draw for me. With that in mind, I thought that this book reminded me in ways of Kingsolver's, Prodigal Summer. I seriously love that book!
Early on, I had this focus on Sally and her mistakes and her running, after awhile it wasn't about her mistakes and the running. It was about the now and moving forward and the effect. As the book progressed, I enjoyed the ties in with historical events. (Presidents, songs, wars...etc).
This quote in particular caused me to just pause a moment and think and run for a sticky note.
Page 155 "It seems strange that the dire escalations on the other side of the world aren't registered here; there is no smoke in the air, no blood spray specking the sidewalk. We take this calm for granted. Spaces are wide in this region, building are low, most families carry more debt than they'll ever be able to pay off in their lifetimes. There's little here that would be worth the risk of an attack, though at the same time I'd wager that there's nothing not worth the risk of a story.
The ladybug bumping against my windowpane, trying to get in.
A woman in sweats pushing a stroller along the sidewalk.
The wail of a siren in the distance.
The words hoarded in this box of a machine, along with all the dubious information available at the touch of a key."
This kind of writing just really impressed me. The whole book is not written like that but it supplied plenty of chewy morsels in that fashion.
Okay.. well when I get affected by a book I could really go on. I could post passage after passage. For me it was simply that good. So I will sum it up by saying it is not your everyday meal. It is gourmet. I hope you enjoy the book.
Thank you again Miriam from Hachette for providing me with a copy of the book for the tour.
( My apologies for the late review).
I just wanted to note that for those that don't blog, when you hear of a blog tour coming up, if you have access to the book, feel free to read along and go from blog to blog to comment. (even later on when you read it) It is a great way to be involved and further interest yourself in a book. Just jump in and comment. It doesn't have to be anything special. You are always welcome.
- Book stats:
- Category: FICTION
- Format: HARDCOVER BOOK
- Publish Date :4/22/2009
- Price: $24.99/$27.99
- ISBN :9780316051651
- Pages: 432
- Size: 6" x 9-1/4"