Currently reading

Paul Hanley
A Month in the Country
Michael Holroyd, J.L. Carr
A Tale of the Dispossessed: A Novel
Laura Restrepo, Dolores M. Koch
Mesabi Pioneers
Jeffrey Smith, Russell Hill
The Crusades Through Arab Eyes
Jon Rothschild, Amin Maalouf
Island of a Thousand Mirrors
Nayomi Munaweera

The Woman Upstairs

The Woman Upstairs - Claire Messud I liked this book a whole lot better half-way through than I did at the end. It's hard to rate because of that. And it's not just because things were good at the middle -- I could already tell that it would probably end badly. I'm glad I read it. The voice of the main character really rang true and her character was fully developed. It's an excellent novel.

But I felt that the novel veered off course at some point. Like the author had stirred up so much and invested so much in the "woman upstairs" that she couldn't bear to see it through. And then the novel got small again. Somehow. Like she saw a 1000-pager stretching out before her and decided, hey, let's end this thing! That may not be right at all, I realize. But upon finishing the book I had a lot of but, but, but, questions left. I think this would be a good book to do in a book club discussion. It raises a lot of issues but doesn't fully discuss them. I feel like there's a lot more there to be talked about.