I’ve been waiting to use that alliteration for way too long now. I’ve started reading a lot more these days. I think I’ve been out of school long enough to want to read again. Reviewing three books at a time seems to work for me, but that also means that there will be lag time between my literature posts because it takes me a long time to read. My last literature post was HERE.
Sometimes I like to be brave and trust reviews about books that I’ve never heard anything about otherwise. Usually if my mom has read a book and liked it, I know that I’ll like it too. Whenever I branch out from her suggestions, I always regret it. That’s what happened to me with this book, The Tiger’s Wife by Tea Obreht.
This book has tons of accolades and best sellers written all over it, but it just wasn’t my cup of tea. Also, the author seems so young from her picture that I couldn’t really believe that she wrote any of it. The story takes place in a made up country somewhere in Eastern Europe it seemed to me. The main character was a girl in her mid twenties who was a young doctor. Her grandfather with whom she grew up, recently died and she wanted to find out more about his life.
The story cuts in and out of her life and her grandpa’s memories and stories. Some of the stories were mildly interesting, but I just didn’t become attached to the characters at all. I could care less about them. They weren’t very developed. However, the writing was beautiful. The stories were detailed and flowed nicely, but I just couldn’t find myself caring. It’s unfortunate because I really wanted to like this one.
I’m uber happy that I picked up my next book though. I knew I had to make up for not liking The Tiger’s Wife, so I had to pick something good. Almost too good. I choose East of Eden by John Steinbeck. And oh my lord did it make up for it. The writing was like butta. It just flowed and oozed greatness. If you ever want to feel like you’re a crappy writer and accomplished nothing in life, read East of Eden.
The story is about a man named Adam Trask and his complete life story. Like, literally his complete life. I felt like I knew Adam Trask personally. The story ebbs and flows throughout the trails and tribulations that Adam has to endure, the people he meets, the lovers he has, and the places he lives. This piece of work shows how well Steinbeck knew man kind.
What the most surprising part of this book is, in my opinion, that John Steinbeck is one of the characters–it’s semi-autobiographical. He’s not a big character, but he’s part of a family that intertwines with Adam’s family. Most of the characters though, mimic those of the well-known biblical stories of Adam and Eve and Cain and Abel.
What I’m trying to say is, that if you only get the chance to read one book in your life, you should read East of Eden. Plus it’s really chunky so it will look impressive on your shelf.
And the most recent book that I finished is Pope Joan by Donna Woolfolk Cross. This is the beautiful tale about a girl defying the odds and achieving above and beyond what anyone told her she could. Joan was born into a poor household in Frankland in the 9th Century AD. She had a peculiar parental arrangement in that her mother was a saxon “heathen” that her father, a missionary priest, converted to his Christian ways. Joan’s mother was anything but converted and taught Joan about her Norse gods and goddesses.
Joan yearned for knowledge and was told she would accomplish nothing because she was born a female. Not only did she prove them wrong, she eventually ruled over them all. I suggest this book if you’re into girl power and love a good underdog story. And a bit of history as well.