Sunday, May 07, 2006
My Antonia - No, MY Antonia!
A lot of people claim not to like this book. I was internally groaning when I picked it up. The copy on the back of the jacket gives away the story in part. However, I am up to page 178 and so far Antonia is not even married yet!
This book should be called "My Jim" (And I actually started to read a book last called "My Jim" which seemed good, but was confusing and I finally ended up throwing it across the room. But that is a story for another day.) because it is written from the perspective of Jim Burden - who I love. At least so far, he might end up being terrible later, so don't hold me to it.
It does, I must admit, start out a little slow. But by the time you get to the story of Pavel and Peter and the wolves (in chapter 7) you get hooked. I love the little background stories that Cather puts in - like those two Russians or Lena and the obsessed farmer or Blind d'Argent. It is interesting to look at how they relate to the story as a whole. This would be a good essay question. And fun to write because it is the sort of essay where you get to make stuff up and then pull parts of the book to prove your own opinion. Which is, now that I think about it, pretty much the definition of every essay you will ever write in high school English.
Anyway - if you are reading "My Antonia" bravo to you! It is, I think, a little challenging because of all the descriptions but so far, I love it and it is totally worth the extra effort.