Deeply disturbing story of a soulless woman abused by her brutalized father. Not for the faint of heart. Shacochis' writing is mind-boggling superb.
I'm rarely disappointed in a book that has been recommended-but I finally gave up on this one-after 173 pages-and that took me way too long. Decided I had no real yearning for finding out how it developed or ended!!!
A contemporary War and Peace -- without the Peace. And a big fat book, to boot! However, a warning to would-be readers: if you don’t have a decent attention span and at least a smattering of 20th century history under your belt, then forgetaboutit.
I’ve been spoiled by Shacochis, his prose so lush (as they say), the descriptions so void of cliches, the sentences so complex and rhythmic. I wish I had an extra two weeks in life so I could flip the book to the beginning and read it out loud. Every couple of pages something would set the hairs on the back of my neck tingling.
Is "The Woman" herself an annoying, almost despicable, character. Definately. It's easy to see her as a metaphor for US foreign policy.
EW top 10 non-fiction of 2013
I had read a professional reviewer's gushing analysis of this book, and the storyline indeed seemed captivating. I actually made it through 600 pages until it dawned on me that the book's main character irritated me terribly, and the relationships she "developed" were toxic and impeded the flow of energy and interest that the other characters elicited in me instead. The writing is sharp and takes mind-numbing bends at times, but momentum flounders at several points on the rocks of mundane and trivial attenpts at forging an emotional ecosystem around the main character, which sucks the oxygen from the reading room.
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