Rating: 5 stars
Shelf: Now Reading
This book was… nothing short of a struggle. I breezed through the first couple hundred pages only to get stuck on the banality that was Walter. I don’t get all the hype, I said. I’m not really liking this book, I said. Only to pick it up again a month or two later and breeze through the last two or three hundred pages. And when I finished and when I realized I’d just been bested by Jonathan Franzen, I was angry. Because I’d fought against loving this so hard. And so I argued with myself. I’d give the book a 3.5. How could I really give it any more since I’d struggled through? Fine, okay. I’ll give it a 4. Only to finally allow myself to accept the fact that I loved this book. That this book is indeed a freaking masterpiece.
I loved this book so much I want to write an essay. A thousand essays on its themes and characters. An essay on freedom – how the freedom to decide, to choose our own paths, can both destroy us and lift us up. How sometimes, to even obtain freedom, one must build a cage. On the characters, and particularly that of Jessica, who is the only character in the family to not get her own chapter yet her sanity seems to have ground them all.
Read it. Just. Read it.