Nadine Larter's Reviews > The Language of Flowers

The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
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really liked it
bookshelves: my-library, my-library-read

I really loved this book, which is a little bit weird because I hated the main character. I think perhaps the feeling of "learning" as I read helped to negate the fact that I could not quite get behind this woman's treatment of people. I don't know why but that kind of self inflicted isolation always strikes me as weak. I imagine my annoyance at this exact brand of character possibly says a lot about me as a person, and most likely nothing good, but I just can't help it. While I did feel a certain (limited!) empathy for Victoria, I could not help but be angered by the senselessness of her situation - but then again, without her toxic persona there would have been no story to tell, would there? There would only be an unhappy beginning with a perfectly acceptable resolution that spanned over a year instead of ten. Hardly bookworthy. I think perhaps I myself am addicted to others, despite my affection for frequent isolation. Love is one thing I have never shied away from, despite having had my heart broken on a number of occasions, not only by men, of course, but by people I have trusted as well. I think a capacity for heartbreak can overwhelm all of us, but I struggle to relate to the kind of brokenness that retaliates in the harm of others. I especially do not understand the compulsion to harm myself or others in the attempt to "protect myself". It is such a strange thing to me. This means that I am most likely lucky, which is something I know and do not take for granted. While I believe that I am personally plagued and affected (often negatively) by my own past, just like many others are, for some reason it has never shut me off to love. Love I feel and embrace it with my whole being. Always. Whether I find it in a book that I love, or art, or a partner, my child, my family, my friends. It is all consuming, and the exquisiteness of love has always, and I hope will always, trump its ability to bring with it the most excruciating of heartbreaks.
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Reading Progress

January 15, 2015 – Shelved
January 15, 2015 – Shelved as: to-read
January 15, 2015 – Shelved as: my-library
January 27, 2015 – Started Reading
January 28, 2015 –
page 52
12.94% "I must admit that I struggle with main characters who are assholes. I am assuming that the point is some sort of transformation but still, this maater-of-fact nastiness aimed at undeserving beings irritates me. I know I should be able to empathise but I can't. Possibly why Harry Potter worked so well for me."
January 29, 2015 –
page 150
37.31% "Going too slow. Family keeps wanting to "do stuff" and "eat". Must make myself a "leave me alone, I'm reading " sign."
January 31, 2015 –
page 243
60.45% "Loving this book despite having little patience for the main character. I love it when I feel like a book is teaching me things."
February 1, 2015 – Shelved as: my-library-read
February 1, 2015 – Finished Reading

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