Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Property ~ by Valerie Martin, 2003

Unfortunately, I posted this book as "What I'm reading now" a day after I started reading it. It's unfortunate because, at 198 pages, this was a quick read ... and I'm already finished with it on the day I get around to telling you I'm reading the book. This will be short and sweet because I'm still reading the heavy-heavier-heaviest books also listed in the sidebar: (1) Carl Jung's autobiography Memories, Dreams, Reflections; (2) The Portable Jung; and (3) Erik Larson's The Devil in the White City. I think I'll leave this book in the sidebar a few days, anyhow. Yes, it was that good.

Title, author, copyright date, and genre?
Property ~ by Valerie Martin, 2003, winner of the 2003 Orange Prize for Fiction

Summarize the book without giving away the ending
Jill summarizes the book quite nicely as "a fantastic look at antebellum slave-holding and marriage and its effect on the people living in this immoral system."

What did you think of the main character?
Although I don't think I'd enjoy her company, the author made me understand her in a way that made me sympathetic about her thinking; she was caught in a situation she hated.

From whose point of view is the story told?
Manon, the woman who's a slaveholder, even as she is trapped herself in a loveless marriage to a man she despises.

Share something from the book.
"Your uncle cautions you that Sarah may be very different when she returns," my aunt said. "She has passed as a free woman, and that experience is generally deleterious to a negro's character."

"She has done more than that," I observed. "She has tasted a freedom you and I will never know."

My aunt looked perplexed. "What is that?" she said.

"She has traveled about the country as a free white man."
Did you like the way the book ended?
I would have liked for the characters to have grown a bit more, but to satisfy me would have required that they jump from the mid-nineteenth-century into the twenty-first-century thinking. Obviously, that can't happen.

What do you think will be your lasting impression of this book?
Two women trapped in a world not of their making, each trying desperately to survive and thrive.

How would you rate this book?
Rated: 10/10, couldn't put it down


June said...

This review came at a good time. Judy and I are going to the Floyd Book Club's meeting tomorrow. Everyone's supposed to come with a suggestion for a book to read. Yes, Floyd has a book club! :-)

I was going to suggest "Water For Elephants" or "Devil In The White City" but I heard they've done them already. And I while I would have liked to have discussed them, I guess it's just as well since I've already read them. This way I can do a new book.

Mediterranean Views said...

Hi Bonnie, Amy from Spain here. Never really spent a lot of time on this blog of yours, and have throughly enjoyed it. Now that I am facilitaitng an English book club here at our local Library (mostly Spanish, obviously) I should put up some comments on what we read, and yours have inspired me. It's a very interesting group of readers because there are Spaniards using it to improve their English; An Argentinian; English, Irish, and American (myself) native speakers, of course our langauges are labeled as 'similiar'; German and Danish residents of our area who speak excellent English. So we get different age group, nationality and language points of view on our books and the discussions are of the MOST INTERESTING!!!

Anyway, I'm here to tag you with a MEME, the first I've ever done. So check out my blog with the list of questions and give it a try. Like I told the girl who tagged me, it could be revealing for both of us.
Look forward to your comments and MEME answers.