Bluefield, VA, United States | Member Since 2008
I listened to the audible edition of this book and love the way Kingsolver reads her own works. She is a master that holds the listener with "rapt attention." It is a real treat to hear her narrate.
After reading two previous novels by Kingsolver, as well as two volumes of her essays and Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, I feel that her writing portrays a depth of thinking and passion unlike many popular writers. Her ability to weave a story that contains an important message and realistic characters facing realistic circumstance is to be admired. As I’ve said before in other reviews, I do not always agree with Kingsolver’s position on certain political points but I admire the way she thinks. She brings intelligence and emotion into the perfect, most delicate balance and truly shows the sensibilities of a strong, loving woman, mother and wife.
Flight Behavior kept me engaged from start to finish. The story of Dellarobia Turnbow honestly portrays a certain type of person who in one way doesn’t seem to be real but in the other is the woman who just lives right down the road here in southern Appalachia. Dellarobia’s complicated life and even more complicated family turmoil carries the story forward and has the reader cheering for her along the way but we are never sure until the end how Dellarobia is changed by the “miracle” she witnesses.
I was sad to see the book end and sad, yet satisfied with the ending of the book. While I don’t agree 100 percent with all of Kingsolver’s ideologies, she communicates what she feels important in the most eloquent of ways through her well-written, emotional prose that carries the reader along the lines with a real purpose in her prose.
I chose to listen to this book in order to pass the time while organizing and cleaning the kitchen. I remembered Ms. Jackson's stirring short story, "The Lottery" and hoped this would be just as intriguing. I used the book as an incentive to get done a job I did not want to do and it was treat was to listen to this book as I went about my task. This book has been on my list for a while, after learning that Ms. Jackson wrote in this genre. I don't read many supernatural thrillers but this one was a good one that wasn't too "freaky" that would leave me with nightmares. I would think that it sits solidly in the genre along with Henry James' Turn of the Screw and as well as Stephen King's The Shining. It some ways it reminded me of both. I'm sure that it was on the cutting edge, written in the 1950's when everything was to be happy and pleasant. I appreciated the solid description that helped build the scene in my mind without being overly descriptive and flowery. Her characterization is solid but not overwhelmingly vivid, except maybe for the Doctor's wife. She was maybe a bit too vivid. This "ghost" story sits adequately between the old and the new in the genre. I was adequately entertain without my intelligence being insulted. I look forward to reading other pieces from Ms. Jackson.
Wow! Not because this book was so good; but, because there is such a stark difference between Eugenides' first novel, this one, and his second, Middlesex, which won a Pulitzer. I couldn't put Middlesex down. I’m SO glad I read it first. It's a good thing I was listening to The Virgin Suicides on audio because otherwise I would have put it down about a third of the way through. Eugenides chooses usual topics but adds unusual twists that hook the reader. That’s a strong writing technique. With VS, it is obvious that there are several suicides among a family of girls. Usual topic: suicide. Unusual twist: they are committed by sisters over the span of about a year. Eugenides includes several motifs in this work but I struggled mainly with his use of descriptive imagery: accurate and articulate, but turned my stomach several times. While reading this book I felt like I was sitting in a car waiting for a driver to take me somewhere. It could be that the stagnancy is deliberate but that’s what I felt. That doesn’t mean the book is bad but it did mean that I didn’t care for it nearly as much as Middlesex. When the book was finally over, I could appreciate it a bit better and the ending lines set a tone that was acceptable with proper resolution.
If you have read Middlesex, be warned, in my opinion, this book is not the same. I’m glad I was driving and multitasking while listening to this book, so I didn’t waste precious hours of my life.
If you are considering reading Eugenides and wanted to start here, please, go for Middlesex first. And if you still want to, come back this one. I have no idea if I will ever attempt The Marriage Plot.
What a solid story - true to life but also altruistic. The expressions and emotions, the high emotional quotient and likeable characters make this book a great read. This might even wind up as required reading in high schools. I believe this one is destined to become a classic.
I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this audio book. The narrator was very strong and her delivery help keep me interested. The story is a classic dystopian one written well before the genre became so popular. If you are female you will be interested and if you are a thinking male, you should enjoy it as well. And it has a terrific ending.
Feast for Imagination
This book is Harry Potter for adults but only better.
If you listened to Jim Dale read the Harry Potter books and loved it you will be enthralled with his interpretation of this book.
Pure enchanting entertainment with lush imagery and lush imagination. This is what happens when you have an artist and a writer combined that has the ability to create a world where everyone wants to go. The intrigue, the mystery, and the succulent prose drew me in. I will say that the first time I started the book, (on audio) it didn't grab me and I got a little lost - likely because I wasn't giving it enough attention. Upon the second attempt, I listened every time I had the chance and ran an audio marathon for the last third of the book. I could hardly wait to see how it resolved but I also didn't want the beautiful imagery to end. It is easy to see some of Morgenstern's possibly influences and some of her motifs are very direct but I appreciate this in a book I'm reading for entertainment. This book is a feast for adult Harry Potter fans, Alice in Wonderland fans, and even fans of the Hunger Games because there are some similar themes. While I could only endure the first of the Twilight series, the romance in this book is understated yet electric. Perfect summer read.
the finest melodrama.....
Rebecca stood up to the housekeeper.
The rich English accent keep me listening.
The final page.
I loved this book, plain and simple. The book is just that. Plain and simple and one to escape into. Manderly is dreamy... Maxim... not really. The estate, the romance, the mystery that is dangerous but not too dangerous. Give me a month at Manderly and I could enter the world again,revived. It reminded me a bit of Jane Eyre and made me wish for more well written books like it. I can't do trashy romance novels but this kind of writing with simple plot lines will do as a breather from what I usually read.
Wonder where I will escape to next?
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