Friday, February 12, 2010

Unfinished Books (2).

Woe as me! We have all had this experience. We hear the hype, we read the blurbs, we froth at the mouth for a book, (or we simply say "Hey this looks good. Why not?") and then letdown! we find we can't finish. This post covers what books I have recently had to bid adieu to before they were completed.

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith.
Francie Nolan, avid reader, penny-candy connoisseur, and adroit observer of human nature, has much to ponder in colorful, turn-of-the-century Brooklyn. She grows up with a sweet, tragic father, a severely realistic mother, and an aunt who gives her love too freely--to men, and to a brother who will always be the favored child. Francie learns early the meaning of hunger and the value of a penny. She is her father's child--romantic and hungry for beauty. But she is her mother's child, too--deeply practical and in constant need of truth. Like the Tree of Heaven that grows out of cement or through cellar gratings, resourceful Francie struggles against all odds to survive and thrive. Betty Smith's poignant, honest novel created a big stir when it was first published over 50 years ago. Her frank writing about life's squalor was alarming to some of the more genteel society, but the book's humor and pathos ensured its place in the realm of classics--and in the hearts of readers, young and old. -Emilie Coulter,

Honestly I picked up A Tree Grows in Brooklyn because it was the book for my book club, not because it seemed like one of my books. I was willing to give it a try; I like to venture outside of my comfort zone every once and a while too. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn has been hailed as a heart-warming classic, so I was intrigued. I started reading it on a boring day at the hospital I volunteer at (I get so much reading done when I volunteer). I got about fifty pages into it in a three hour period. I was extremely confused as to what the plot was. I'm one of those readers who needs the plot clearly stated somewhere. The whole story was a intricate tangle of anecdotes about Francie Nolan's family. I scratched my head, put the book down, and 'promised' myself I would finish it before our book club meeting. That never happened. I'm planning on going to the meeting and hearing the others' opinions on the book. Then I'll make the final decision on whether or not I should finish it.

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