Barb's Reviews > March

March by Geraldine Brooks
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's review
Sep 25, 08

really liked it
bookshelves: america-civil-war, favs-of-2008, read-in-2008, slavery
Read in September, 2008

I previously read Geraldine Brook's 'People of the Book' and 'Year of Wonders'. 'Year of Wonders' is one of my all time favorite books. I really enjoyed this story as well.

Brooks has created a moving account of Mr. March's experience during the Civil War. Mr. March is the father in Louisa May Alcott's Little Women.

This was our book club's book choice for September. I had every intention of reading Little Women before I started reading March. I never read Little Women and I thought I should have the back story before reading about Mr. March's. I checked out Little Women from my local library and started to read about the four March sisters but I didn't make it very far. I think with books, like many other things in life, 'timing is everything'. Little Women is clearly written for young girls and I am not a young girl, I feel certain that I missed my chance to love Louisa Alcott's classic by about thirty years or so.

And from the sound of the reviews from people who loved Little Women, perhaps my experience or lack thereof helped me enjoy this story better than I would have if I had read Little Women. I didn't have my own ideas about Mr. March and how perfect he was and so, I didn't feel betrayed or disappointed by anything he did.

I thought that Brooks painted a vivid picture of the complications that a man like Mr. March would endure as a chaplain during the civil war and as an idealist.

I thought the characters Brooks brings to life were realistic with both their strengths and weaknesses portrayed. Many times we think we understand these characters and their motivations only to discover we were wrong.

I enjoyed March's narration and perspective. I thought it was very clever of Brooks to give Mrs. March a chance to narrate and give us her perspective, there are two sides to every marriage and I was interested in hearing hers.

I found it to be a moving and insightful story that I would recommend to fans of historical fiction and I would say this would be a great choice for a book club that enjoys intellectual discussions.
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