Most of the Pulitzer Prize winning novels I've read so far have pretentious, flowery, trying-too-hard language. After a few chapters, I lose interest and give up.
"So Big" is, happily, an exception. It is a calm, simple, story of a woman who accepts her difficult life, working hard to make life better for her son (who she nicknames "So Big"),while trying to instill in him, an appreciation for beauty in the world. Her son does achieve financial success, but is that enough?
Beautifully understated elegance. Just loved it.
If you've even wondered why so many Pulitzer Prize winners drop into oblivion, read this and then compare the authors. This book, a Pulitzer Prize winner, is one of her early novels. It is rich in character development with a clear portrayal of the Chicago area at the turn of the 20th century. She followed this with a string of successes, most of which are much better known (Show Boat, Saratoga Trunk, Cimarron, Giant). The first two-thirds of the book concern Dirk âSobigâ DeJong's mother, Selina: orphan, school marm, farmer's wife, widow, success. Now on to âSobigâ. As a child he helps on the farm; in youth, as mom succeeds, he goes to college to be an architect but soon switches to selling bonds, where he makes his fortune but not love. It is fortunate that this novel is now back in print; it is âso-o-o-o big-g-g-gâ!
This is a wonderful classic that I recommend to all mothers.
Pulitzer Prize winner. My book club loved it.