Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Book Review

Title: Prodigal Summer: A Novel
By: Barbara Kingsolver
Pages: 444

Book Description:
Barbara Kingsolver, a writer praised for her "extravagantly gifted narrative voice" (New York Times Book Review), has created with this novel a hymn to wildness that celebrates the prodigal spirit of human nature, and of nature itself.

Prodigal Summer weaves together three stories of human love within a larger tapestry of lives inhabiting the forested mountains and struggling small farms of southern Appalachia. At the heart of these intertwined narratives is a den of coyotes that have recently migrated into the region. Deanna Wolfe, a reclusive wildlife biologist, watches the forest from her outpost in an isolated mountain cabin where she is caught off-guard by Eddie Bondo, a young hunter who comes to invade her most private spaces and confound her self-assured, solitary life. On a farm several miles down the mountain, another web of lives unfolds as Lusa Maluf Landowski, a bookish city girl turned farmer's wife, finds herself unexpectedly marooned in a strange place where she must declare or lose her attachment to the land. And a few more miles down the road, a pair of elderly, feuding neighbors tend their respective farms and wrangle about God, pesticides, and the complexities of a world neither of them expected.

Over the course of one humid summer, as the urge to procreate overtakes a green and profligate countryside, these characters find connections to one another and to the flora and fauna with which they necessarily share a place. Their discoveries are embedded inside countless intimate lessons of biology, the realities of small farming, and the final, urgent truth that humans are only one part of life on earth.

My Thoughts:
I will it admit, it wasn't until page 120 something that I started getting interested in this book. But once I did, I wanted to keep reading. As for rating the book, I'd put it somewhere between "It was OK" and "I liked it." It's not a book I'd recommend to everyone, but not a book I'd say to stay away from either. Kingsolver uses far more descriptive writing than I'm used to. I tend to like my stories to get right to the point (though I did like her book The Bean Trees). My only real gripe with this book is that I felt the book ended somewhat unresolved. It expected a little more.... Okay, a lot more.my read shelf:
Erikajean Jean's book recommendations, favorite quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)

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