India Bridge’s house is a prison, her life a collection of redundancies. Overnight, her children have turned into willful, frightening creatures and her husband into an unsolvable enigma. When India tries to reach beyond the limitations around her, she begins to realize the scattered truths that hide themselves in fear and solitude.
©1959 Evan S. Connell (P)1991 Recorded Books, LLC
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I was anticipating a novel about the angst of a 1940s / 1950s housewife and her internal struggles to find self-worth, and although it was an interesting story I didn’t think the book delivered on that theme.
Most of the story was about her day to day life and only occasionally did I feel I got a glimpse of her questioning her place in the world. Because of that, I felt like she really believed that this was her lot in life and that the status quo suited her just fine. I don’t think she was aware of how vacuous she was, and I certainly didn’t feel like she was struggling to “cope with her dissatisfaction” in life like the synopsis implied.
Near the very end, the topic bubbled up a little more following what happened to someone in her social circle (I won’t give anything away), but overall I didn’t feel that it was a strong theme running through the story.
Could it be I didn’t feel her struggle because from my perspective today in 2017 I just can’t relate? Intellectually I understand the sad plight of the repressed housewife, but I guess I just can’t empathise enough… or maybe it was all just to subtle for me.
I do want to read Mr Bridge!
I am glad I read Mr. Bridge first. This was a good book and well worth the read, but Mr. Bridge was a truly exceptional read. Connell, in both books, writes masterfully. His insights and delivery are perfection.
Laugh out loud funny at times, with a subtle but pointed humor. Also deep and moving, highly recommend!
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