Thursday, March 30, 2006
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
But in reality it is funny and kind of heartbreaking. I burst into tears during the part where she and her mother agree about the luxury of pouring coffee down the sink.
And I loved when the boys were talking trash about the horse. "I seen him run over a little baby yesterday." Indeed!
I hated the snotty child-hating librarian, though, of course.
Some of the talk about Jews made me a little uncomfortable. I really have to remember the historical context of this. 1912 was a whole other world. And I like that the mother had more enlightened ideas - or at least seems to at this point. It is kind of funny because a lot of the descriptive parts of this book remind me of the "All of a Kind Family" books which is a series of books about a Jewish family living in a tenement on the lower east side of Manhattan around the same time as this story takes place.
There is a tenement museum in New York City. It is the Lower East Side and not Brooklyn, but I imagine there are similarities:
you can see it here.
Also, the tree that Francie talks about as a harbinger of a neighborhood turning into slums is called ailanthus.