by Reynolds Price
(Book #1 for 2007; 4th book finished for the From the Stacks Challenge)
Roxanna begins her story on her twentieth birthday – a day that introduces her to the harsh realities of adulthood and changes the course of her life forever. From this day on, Roxanna is quick to share the intimate details of ninety years of life in North Carolina.
Not a great start to the year; this story of an “uneventful life” was rather …uneventful! Actually, that’s not entirely true as things did happen, but I never had an emotional reaction to anything that did. Mainly, I never warmed up to Roxanna, our fictional narrator sharing her life history, and found her naivety frustrating, and her tone occasionally condescending. This is most likely due to my modern perspective on things, as many reviewers or critics hail it as a wonderful Southern story, evocative of time and place. One reviewer on Amazon however, stated “the lack of character development among key, critical characters, the heavy-handed foreshadowing, the excruciating slow pace, and the unconvincing female voice” as the book’s flaws and essentially I’d have to agree. Perhaps if you’re from the South, or have some connection there, you would have quite a different experience with this book.
My Rating: 2/5