What to say about this? I must think about how to word this short review because I'm sure some of my Goodreads friends might enjoy it.
A lifelong friend, who lives down the street, said it was the best book he's read in years and "you have to read it." Hope he's not home when I return it because I don't want to say, "I didn't like it much" trying to be nice when someone recommends a book so strongly. He’s not on Goodreads although I have mentioned the site a few times, so he won’t see my review. He's well read, no question and written a few education and ethics related books as an educator himself.
The book generally, is about death; looking death in the face; how others react to death of loved ones; dying in war; and superstition. That's what I
think it's about. The subject matter wasn't the reason I did not care for the book.
What stands out for me mostly as to why I didn't like it is the jumping around from characters and settings. It happened so frequently that I found it disconcerting and then just plain annoying.
Obreht, who was 25 in 2011 when it was published, won awards and recognition for the book. It was touted in the industry as a ground-breaking first book for a ground-breaking creative novelist. Also, it was well marketed and I believe on Oprah’s list, if not on the list, recognized by Oprah as a must read. Unfortunately or not, such awards and recognitions mean nothing to me.
I have read too many bestsellers which to me, didn't deserve to even be on the list, so that in itself doesn't 'turn my head' and encourage me to read a book. But let it be known that I believe that different people enjoy and appreciate different things including books.
Before you pick it up to read though, take a look at the reviews of others on Goodreads to see what they say. In looking through them last week when I decided I didn't care much for the book, it occurred to me that generally, men rated it higher and gave more positive reviews than women. That fact was quite noticeable but I have no idea as to why.
I was fussing with ratings, the stars I was going to choose and decided that three stars, "liked it" just wasn't going to work for me. So it got two stars...it was ok but glad I finished without putting it down and can’t wait to get it out of my house to make room for a book I enjoy. I’m past the point of being ready after slogging through that "award winning" book.