Jennifer's Reviews > The Quickening

The Quickening by Michelle Hoover
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's review
Dec 06, 2010

liked it
bookshelves: historical, tfpl-book-club
Read in January, 2012

Even after reading and discussing this for book club, I'm still not sure what I think about this one. On the whole, the shift in voices and the inconsistency with time did not bother me - though sometimes the voices were too similar. And, surprisingly, I didn't mind the indirect way in which Hoover's characters discussed the big events. And I realize that in such a short novel, the depth of characters was probably not going to please me regardless - so I was prepared. And depressing novels are just fine in my opinion.

Yet, I still come away from this novel with a sense of dislike. The gray tone of the novel was so incessant, that I almost wished for some sort of levity. I understand that life was hard at that time - but everyone had to do something to keep their spirits up. For only one character, Mary (with her piano), did I see anything that might serve as an escape from the drudgery. If I had had to live the kind of lives that Mary or Eddie did, I might have found a way to off myself (and not just dream about failing to do so, again like Mary). Even with the idea of children, as in Eddie's case, there was so little hope in any of these lives. I suppose the only hope was the "my boy" that Eddie related her tale to, but he never seemed real (even after you find out the truth).

I liked the overall concept, and for the most part, I liked the execution. I just wanted a little relief (not much) to make me feel that these people could actually have existed.

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