John's Reviews > The Heart is a Lonely Hunter

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers
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's review
Sep 02, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: contemporary-fiction, dystopias, family, historical-fiction, pulitzer

After finishing, it took me a while to try and decide what on earth this was about. To some degree, it is a rumination on an indifferent world and a silent God. The characters are put into suspended animation by the presence of another who offers them the opportunity for confession. It is also a rumination on the absurdity of humanity and the despair of a life that cannot reach its potential. Nonetheless, although all the plans of the main characters are frustrated and one commits suicide, I think the ending is ultimately hopeful. Vaguely reminiscent of Voltaire's admonition regarding gardens.

A mute moves into a boarding house and changes the lives of everyone he meets, particularly a negro doctor, a frustrated revolutionary, and a young girl who just wants something beautiful in her life. Sometimes despairing, sometimes hopeful, and always in tune with the isolation and loneliness of sensitive folk. A darkly beautiful, thoughtful tale.

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