nicole's Reviews > Swamplandia!

Swamplandia! by Karen Russell
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Mar 14, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: 2011
Read in March, 2011

I loved St. Lucy's Home for Wayward Girls Raised By Wolves the first time I read it. But I hit reader's ennui hardcore just before starting this book. I went through three, starting and stopping, and tried to re-read Russell's short story collection before diving into this. It was a bad mistake. I felt like I was wading the swamp, once I got into this story, up to my knees in muck, tripping over weeds. It was just miserable at the beginning. I felt the lightning, the real drum of a heart beat was missing in the longer story. The sentences were astounding, but only when separate thoughts. The time it took to come up for air between them, to string them into something forward moving, was too long for me.

But then I hit a section today that did me in for good, stole the rest of my day. I loved how it pulled together at the ending, straddling the line between the mystical stories you tell yourself when you're a child and the reality you tell yourself stories to forget when you're adult. Beautiful, just beautifully written.
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