Kate's Reviews > The Edible Woman

The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood
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May 08, 12

Read in April, 2012

Firstly, I would like to commend Atwood on her linguistic artistry throughout the novel. She is an excellent wordsmith. Her total mastery of the language enables us, the readers, to form elaborate images of the novel’s scenes in our minds, as she paints her pictures so vividly. For example, Marian has just stepped into the bath tub: “She occupied herself with the soap. The water was lulling, relaxing. She had lots of time; she could indulge her desire to lie back with her enamelled hair placed for security against the slope of the tub, to float with the water washing gently over her nearly submerged body. From their elevated position her eyes had a long vista of white concave enclosing walls and semi-transparent water, her body islanded, extending in a series of curves and hollows down towards the terminal peninsula of legs and the reefs of toes...” (255) Secondly, I was particularly intrigued by the use of quirky interior monologue. Marian has consistently interesting outlooks and unique perspectives on situations. “They sat in silence. Marian was thinking about what he had said. She supposed that the impersonality of his request was quite insulting. Why didn’t she feel insulted then? Instead she felt she ought to do something helpful and clinical, like taking his pulse.” (223) After reading this novel, I must admit that I’ve been more focussed on my own thoughts- all the absurdities in my thinking processes, my reactions, etcetera. Finally, I truly enjoyed the comical aspects of this novel. Even though the main themes are serious in nature, the writing is very funny. The descriptions are both detailed and humorous. Atwood is extremely witty. For instance, Marian is at a friend’s place for dinner and there are two young children in the house. The overly laid-back mother remarks as she sees her son peeing behind the door: “ “It was no accident,” Clara remarked, opening her eyes. “He just loves peeing behind doors. I wonder what it is. He’s going to be secretive when he grows up, an undercover agent or a diplomat or something. The furtive little bastard.” ” (36)
Overall, I found reading The Edible Woman to be a very enjoyable and worthwhile experience. I highly recommend this novel, five stars!
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