Monday, December 14, 2009

The Member Of the Wedding



Just finished reading this little gem. The novel is told from the perspective of 12-year-old tomboy Frankie Addams. The pre-teen's stifled life in a small Southern town is depicted in the telling of only two or three days before her brother's wedding - an event that she feels, hopes, knows will change her life forever. Carson McCullers portrays the adolescent's journey in a manner that conveys childlike wonder without being too juvenile.
Written in 1946, I'd never heard of this book before stealing it from my closet at my parent's house during Thanksgiving.
It's a simple tale, but told as though each word, each note, each voice has been crafted to form a sweet, soft, little poem on each page. Without muddling it up with over-dramatic nuances, McCullers identifies exactly what it feels like to be a nearly-teen on the verge of the rest of your life.

Teen angst is truly timeless.

My favorite passage:
It was the hour when the shapes in the kitchen darkened and voices bloomed. They spoke softly and their voices bloomed like flowers - if sounds can be like flowers and voices bloom. F. Jasmine stood with her hands clasped behind her head, facing the darkening room. She had the feeling that unknown words were in her throat, and she was ready to speak them. Strange words were flowering in her throat and now was the time for her to name them.

What did you think?

2 comments:

Sylvie said...

In my eyes and heart, this is truly a wonderful book, even though I am not a big fan of her other books. I don't enjoy reading about hard truths, however poetic, especially when I can identify with them far too well. But this one didn't hurt to read. I believe it was made into a movie many years ago, starring Julie Harris. Pretty sure it was black & white. Don't remember much about it except that to me it captured the look and mood of the book as I had pictured it.

Anonymous said...

This is, as you say, a little gem. It is a classic and rightly so. I do like books that ring true, that make you look up from the page for a second while you recognize and absorb the true thing. And it is OK if they are hard truths as long as they are not torturing animal or anything like that. I never saw the movie.