Monday, April 23, 2018

Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff

We read Fates and Furies by Laurent Groff for our book club last month.  Last time we read Groff, I wasn't impressed.  But this book, we were assured, is different. It's good. People love it!

And, my friends, people in my book club loved this book.

I did not.

It tells the story of a troubled, tumultuous marriage, set against white male privilege and the author patting herself on the back a lot. 

Do you remember that scene in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix where Sirius Black falls behind the veil at the Ministry of Magic and you had to read that scene over and over and over again because you couldn't quite figure out why Harry was so upset?  It took you several times until you realized, oh, he died.  Okay, just me? Well, that was a time when I thought Rowling's writing could have been a bit tighter. I actually generally think of Rowling as a really good writer, but I was just so confused at that moment.

That's how I felt through 50% of Fates and Furies. I honestly was rereading and rereading and then I'd flip back three pages and then.  Then. I started to think I was stupid. Like I'm a BAD reader.  Like I'm not a CAREFUL reader. Like I'm not a well educated woman who reads ALL THE TIME. 

And you know what I don't need? A book I'm reading for pleasure to undermine my confidence in my ability to do THE ONE THING I honestly think I'm good at.

1) I do not like to read about marriage in peril, particularly when peril could be prevented by the people involved in said marriage sitting down and having a conversation.
2) I do not like it when the book makes me feel inadequate because of its obliqueness.
3) I do not ever want to read Lauren Groff again.

I'm so angry with this book.

1 comment:

  1. This book has been on my list FOREVER and I just started reading it last weekend ... and haven't picked it up since. I find the language a bit overwrought, even though I am a HUGE fan of metaphorical language. And the pacing seems frenetic somehow. And the characters seem so PERFECT -- almost to the point of being caricatures. And that's just the first few chapters! Plus, I WHOLLY AGREE with you on your point number one. That's just something I don't enjoy reading about. Perhaps I need to simply close the book and decide not to read it. (Which is a hard and I'm-not-a-quitter-why-am-I-doing-this feelings abound.)


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