About fifty pages into this attempt at reading the novel, something came over me: it was just a small description, the idea of Cathy and Heathcliff inAbout fifty pages into this attempt at reading the novel, something came over me: it was just a small description, the idea of Cathy and Heathcliff in their youth running out on the moors, but it seemed that right then and there the savage obsession and love was sparked in both them and me, and I found myself eager to read on. I had to – there was something dark and delicious in the obsessions, in the hate and the twisted love and loss, and how the unfulfilled romance of two people came to ruin so many around them. But it's not just a failed romance, it's also the allusions, the hints, the subtleness, and the themes represented and clashing in these people with such turbulence. There's barely any society to speak of: just two houses in the wilderness of the moors, punished by wind and weather and cold, and lives intertwining until they all find themselves dead and gone, leaving only a faint glimmer of happiness to be had when the shadow retreats.
It was... Strangely erotic, for all the subtlety and lack of actual sex. The feelings were there, burning and passionate, and Heathcliff far more loathsome than I ever imagined, and yet slightly understandable in his vicious reaction towards all those who would try to pry him from the only one he loves by imposing their social rights and cultured beliefs onto their natural union. The women are fascinating too, spirited and clever, and I find myself loving both Catherines for their fiery personalities – even though they are at the end of the day under the thumb of those who would marry them, and the law as it was then, but their strength despite it all... Oh.
I loved this book. I alternated between reading it in a delirious rush and dragging my eyes back and forth, soaking in certain pages over and over for fear of it ending too soon....more
From the first page to the last, I was sucked in and won over immediately. The way Adichie weaves a tale, with her lush language that captures both aFrom the first page to the last, I was sucked in and won over immediately. The way Adichie weaves a tale, with her lush language that captures both a stifling, forcibly silent atmosphere where the religious father Eugene dominates the family with an iron fist, to the stark contrast in wealth and family bonds that aunt Ifeoma presents, the reader follows along breathless as Kambili blossoms from a restrained and suffocating teenage girl into her own self. The way Adichie can turn phrases and sentences to subtly show just exactly how Kambili begins to detach herself from her father, and how the punished and tortured family begins a rebellion against Eugene's tyranny, it's... Nothing short of amazing. There were moments when I could feel the burn of spices, could sense the throbbing sexual desire unfurling in Kambili without finding fulfillment, but it's not just that: underneath it all runs the common thread of political strife and all-pervading religion, but what is so wonderfully done is how so many varied viewpoints on the Catholic church and the old traditions come up. Faith is not just one thing, just as a nation is just not one thing, and though I left the novel with a slight taste of defeat and sorrow, there was still a glimmer of hope, however faint, for all the characters to find a way still.
This was a wonderful novel to read, and I even found myself crying at times, unable to put the book down as I raced through it....more