5 member(s) found this review helpful.
Does John Irving ever get to the point? This is the second novel I've failed at enjoying because Irving just couldn't get a move on.
Even worse, not one character was likable including the flat protagonist. Her mother was a horney basket case. Eddie,the mother's 16-year-old lover was gross--and horney. The flat father, Ted Cole? Ewww, with a capitol E. He was horney too. Everyone's horney and miserable. And it's all just pointlessly gross.
One-third of the way in, I just let the story flop to the floor where all wretchedly dull books belong while I snored away...
3 member(s) found this review helpful.
I liked this John Irving book the best with Garp a close second. He is my favorite author and I was very pleased with this book. Anyone who has not read Irving may like this book as a first read as the characters and story are well developed and not as quirky as others he writes about (not that quirky is a bad thing).
2 member(s) found this review helpful.
After my hungry consumption of the "The World According to Garp" I was anxious to read this but also worried that it wouldn't live up to my high hopes. I had nothing to fear, however. Like Garp, the novel follows a single person, yet many of the supporting characters have richly developed backgrounds of their own that spring off into short stories sometimes. While it may sound distracting, it lends a completeness to the book that one doesn't often find elsewhere.
We start with four-year old Ruth Cole, whose parent's marriage is fractured, to say the least. Haunted by the death of their two teenaged sons years earlier, both her mother and father have coped in vastly differnt ways. When her father hires an assistant for the summer, his presence leads to an event that will forever change the course of Ruth's life. From there we follow Ruth throughout her young adulthood and into middle-age, weaving a very differnt tale, yet still bringing in the characters from the past.
A great read that I highly recommend!