Rocklin, CA, United States | Member Since 2004
If Oscars were given for acting out books, Baker would go home with the golden statue -- he's great. Just great. With so many different people populating this book -- Southern homefolk, Boston elite, Jewish professors, black athletes, little-guy reporters -- it was nothing short of fascinating to realize how much you learned about each character from just listening to them speak -- through Baker, of course. Very well done.
That said, this was one of the few books I've ever encountered that shoulda been shorter, by about a third. We are treated to three separate episodes of play-by-play basketball, which maybe some sports nuts loved, but got intensly boring after just a few minutes. And some of the love -- make that sex -- scenes were disgusting and way overdone, even though one has to suppose that writing these sex and sport scenes must have been great fun for Wolfe. If I'd been reading the book, I would have skipped ahead, but with an audio book, you have no way of knowing how long it's going to continue.
None of this should deter you from experiencing this book, in one format or another. "Charlotte" is a very very good book, and one that surely will cause some heartburn among the denizens of the hallowed halls of ivy. It's surely one of those situations in which a book of fiction will bring about more reform, long run, than a dry, academic critique ever could.
Read it, or listen to it, but don't miss "I Am Charlotte Simmons".
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