Victor Gibson's Reviews > Cat's Eye

Cat's Eye by Margaret Atwood
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Sep 12, 2012

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Read in September, 2012

I have now read all but one of Margaret Atwood's fiction works, and one can only admire the craftsmanship of her work. She is a brilliant writer, and has a particular knack of immersing us in childhood. This will be a painful read for anyone who was bullied during their youth. Girls can be very unpleasant to each other and actually so can boys. My own solution to being bullied at the age of about 11 or 12 was to beat seven bells out of one of the bullies which solved the problem, but I honestly had seldom thought about it until I read Cat's Eye.

I have tried not to read other reviews before writing mine, but could not resist it in this case. I needed to know whether Elaine's character as an adult was at all sympathetic, and I find that a few felt as I did that she was not very likeable. In fact her actions as a 20 year old will be a bit of an affirmation to those who go out with one person with the intent of forming a long time relationship while actually having sex with some-one else. I am left wondering what the author intended us to feel. Was it admiration for Elaine because she had overcome her problems and become her own person, having the capability to ignore the emotions of others in adulthood? Or had she been damaged in some way by her childhood experience so as an adult she kept doing things of which I did not approve? Maybe this ambiguity is intentional because these and other questions are asked at the end of my copy of the book, as guidance for reading groups.

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