Ann's Reviews > The Poisonwood Bible

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
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's review
Sep 02, 2007

it was amazing
Read from January 29 to February 01, 2012

I started reading this a few years ago and quit after about 300 pages. I loved the language, the writing, the intensity of the world that Kingsolver created, but could not tolerate the character of the father. The chapters alternate point of view among the four daughters and the mother. At the time, I wondered why Kingsolver didn't include chapters in the father's voice so we would understand what caused him to be the way he was and help us have some sympathy for him. But, no.

This time I was determined to read all the way through. And what quickly struck me was that it would have been wrong to include the father's point of view because this is not his story. It's the story of the mother and even more so of the daughters. They know only what they experience directly, not what those affecting them have experienced. And so it is right that the book begins in the innocent and immature words of the young daughters and gradually segues to the more mature and worldly language of the women they become. There are very complicated issues of religion, race, culture, and politics along the way. This is ultimately a very satisfying story and one that i am glad to have read. It will stay with me for quite some time.
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