I couldn''t help but compare this book to the movie, which I really loved. The book contained many of the same elements but the emphasis was quite dif...moreI couldn''t help but compare this book to the movie, which I really loved. The book contained many of the same elements but the emphasis was quite different. I really enjoyed how the story was told in short narrative chapters interspersed with the newspaper gossip column and the chapters about Evelyn. I really enjoy books that jump around in time as long as all the threads come together and Flagg managed to do that quite well (though there was what I believe to be an error in the timing in Evelyn''s sections near the beginning of the book. I think my memory of the movie is too strong to really appreciate the book on its own merits, even though there were a few things about the book I preferred (e.g. the implication that Idgie and Mrs Threadgoode was the same person was a melodramatic Hollywood addition, plus the relationship between Idgie and Ruth was too subtle -- I liked how forthright and honestly portrayed it was in the book). Not sure which ending I liked better, but I''m glad that the book had so much more meat than the movie -- with a longer span of time and more characters to develop. (less)
**spoiler alert** My original review: I was right about the time it took to read (only about 5 or 6 days), but it took me a while to get to it and abo...more**spoiler alert** My original review: I was right about the time it took to read (only about 5 or 6 days), but it took me a while to get to it and about the same amount of time to get a chance to journal it and prepare to send it on.
This was a good book & it was certainly a page-turner; I guess for what it was, it was fun. But it certainly was no literary masterpiece--with all the hoopla it's been getting I thought it was going to be phenomenal. I still gave it an 8 because I don't think the author's original intention was to aspire to be anything more than his other thriller-type fiction, and for a pulp fiction genre novel it was better than most.
With regard to the historical accuracy, it could have been better; it seemed awfully anachronistic in some respects (yes, women had more status than one might think during this time period, but for Aliena to twice make a fortune completely on her own, starting from nothing is a little too much; the religion of the characters didn't ring true to me either--this book takes place during one of the periods where faith in Christianity (in England of course) was strong, devout, and pretty much universal).
The characters, though well-drawn, were rather one-dimensional. There was no depth really, and no change over time. Specifically, Percy Hamleigh was monolithically evil (with, I might add, no reason for his cruelty except for an overbearing mother--another one-note instrument, btw--and a sense of arrogant justification), and manipulative Waleran, described even at the end as pious (though in what sense he was pious, I could never figure out). The plot itself was also a bit too linear, straight-forward, and single-layered for my taste (especially for such a long book).
However, despite all of its deficiencies, I did enjoy the book very much as one of those "escape into a good story and don't analyse too much" kind of books.(less)