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The Poisonwood Bible
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Archive: Other Books > The Poisonwood Bible - 4 Stars

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Brian (branderson) I'm truly happy that this group has helped me to get out of my comfort zone a bit with my reading. This was a book I would never have decided to give a chance years ago, but I'm happy that I've been able to become a bit more open to differing genres and subject matters.

The Poisonwood Bible is the story of a missionary family of six (mother, father, and four daughters) that moves from Georgia to the Belgian Congo in the early 1960s. Each chapter is written from the point of view of one of the four daughters, with interludes coming from the perspective of the mother. The story flows well, highlighting how the family comes to terms with a plethora of problems and circumstances that happen, as well as how this impacts their lives in the future.

What's great about this book is that, while you only have a few snippets where the story is being told from the mother's point of view, you learn so much about the pain and sacrifices she has to make to keep her family safe in a new environment. The subplots for all four daughters are also well written, highlighting how the culture shock of growing up in the Congo ultimately impacts their lives.

The main theme of the book was cultural arrogance of the United States during the time period and its impact on the Belgian Congo. And I believe that this was probably why I didn't give the book a five-star review. At times where you are learning more about the family and starting to really relate, there are parts that lean HEAVILY on this theme to the point where you can almost forget you're reading a family drama.

All in all, I'm happy that I read this book. It was a unique perspective of five strong women as they battle inner guilt and demons a long way from home.


Nicole D. | 1497 comments I read that last month as well and loved it


message 3: by Cynda (new)

Cynda  (cynda) I have had this book on my bookcase at home for a long time now. I am getting brave enough to read it.


message 4: by Amy (new) - rated it 5 stars

Amy | 9351 comments I loved that one read years decades ago. No first of that author.


message 5: by Jenna (new)

Jenna Bookish (jennabookish) I had to read this years ago for a high school class and it remains one of my favorites. Adah really stuck with me as a character. I'll have to reread this one soon; it's been years.


Joy D | 4614 comments I read this one earlier this month as well. I really enjoyed the first half where the family was all together in the village, but I didn't care as much for the second half following their lives as they grew older. Link to my review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...


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