The Namesake ended on the same strong note that it began. It is a highly satisfying story that left me richer for having read it. I think it makes an excellent book club book....there is much to discuss and learn.
I've just completed Spending, by Mary Gordon, for the second time. It is a novel about a woman artist who questions why it is that male artists traditionally acquired patrons who support them, allowing them the time to devote to their art. In answer to her question, she acquires a patron, who not only supports her, but becomes her lover as well. Monica, the main character, spends much of the book wondering if she is now free to pursue her art, or if she is merely a kept woman.
The first time I read this, I was enthralled. The storyline was fresh, original, creative. Gordon's writing was strong and entertaining. The world of art of was presented in ways I'd never thought about. I reached the end of the book and wished I had people to discuss it with. When my fiber arts book club was brainstorming what novels to read, I suggested this one. I did mention that it was loaded with erotic passages as well.
I hope the book club won't shun me now. I did enjoy the book this second time around, but it didn't hold up in quality. This time it felt wordy, pretentious, overdone. I still think it's an intriguing plot, and when the author concentrates on action to move the plot along, it's enjoyable to read. But there is too much pedantic discussion of artistic philosophy. The erotic scenes get tiresome and repetitive. And the ending is contrived and almost silly.
Has anyone else read it? I'd love to know what you think.
Today I began The Midwife's Tale, by Gretchen Laskas. So far, it's fully engaging.