More lists with this book...
Pearl is an American studying the Irish language in Dublin. Maria is her mother. Joseph is Maria's best friend, a man who has played the role of substitute father in Pearl's life.
The story is told from the viewpoint of all three characters, yet still externally to them. Pearl has b...more
Critics agree that Gordon has an extraordinary command of language and that her novel is a relevant look at love, death, the spirit, and religion. They are split, however, on whether or not Pearl sags under the weight of its subjects and whether the questions of suffering become, well, insufferable. Some praise Gordon's bravery in creating a protagonist, Maria Meyers, who is fiercely maternal but not entirely likeable, while others find the character merely overbearing. Opinions also deviate wit...more
I didn't feel connecte...more
This book addresses all three. I feel certain the author's expected audience is female but the themes are far from gender specific.
A rebellious girl of the 60's is estranged from her father, gives birth to an illegitmate daughter who grows up to resemble the mother and ends up trying to martyr herself in Ireland.
As I was reading, I grew fearful the author would ruin a good story with a bad ending. But the ending fitted the story, all too rare, it seems...more
Although I find...more
For me personally, the story highlighted m...more
It was hard to get into. I was annoyed by the constant narrative interpolations--"Perhaps this uncertainty marks my failure as a chronicler. Nevertheless, this is the way I must tell the story of those times." ""We'll get on with the story. With one of the stories. For now we again take up the chronicle." Gordon interweaves three points of view, which is a complex & admirable undertaking, but surely there was a less talky way to...more
The intrusions of the narrator did not add to the storyline and the characters were uninteresting. It seems to me that Gordon continues to struggle with her personal demons through her novels, yet she never reaches any resolution within herse...more
I don't think I would recommend this book based in how painful it felt to read it.
I personally did not like this book. It scared me that a "good" kid could do such a thing to herself and I didn't understand the statement she was trying to make. I felt like the book was trying to be deep but it didn't seem deep to me I thought it was stupid.
I suppose it could be a good discussion book.
She received her A.B. from Barnard College in 1971, and her M.A. from...more