i seem to be stuck in a 3.5 rut. Can't decide what to give it. more later.
I still don't know. I feel like I had been waiting for so long to read this book that my expectations got built up really high. (Especially considering that it is one of my best friend's favorite books and he is/was constantly talking about how fantastic it is). And well, for me there was just something lackluster to it. I turned each page, hoping for my heart to explode with beautiful writing and fantastic stories that my friend always talks about, and instead, I found that I didn't really care about any of it.
There are two exceptions to this, which is why I was stuck on what I wanted to rate it:
-Oyster: My goodness, everything about that dog broke my heart. Although he was a small character, there was just something about him. I think he was the only thing that really brought Joe to life for me. Throughout the book Joe was just a character on a mission to save his family, and there was nothing more to him than that. Until there was Oyster, who saved his life, who he betrayed, and then nothing came out of it. Oyster, who survived, was killed by his friend for nothing. And that just brought me to tears.
-Ethel: There is something about her character that I just love. I think I have a thing for characters like her. She reminds me of Ursula from One Hundred Year's of Solitude and Joy from Dead Like Me (TV show...so good). All these characters are women (and mothers) who have lost, Ursula fights a never ending battle to keep her family together and Joy has to deal with the death of a daughter that she never particularly liked. Yet there is something really strong about them. Ethel lost her husband and left her family in Europe, she raised her son on bad cooking and tough love. And man. She really made me laugh. If the book could have been centered around her, I would have LOVED it. (even though that completely turns it into another book...)
The rest of the story was just okay with me. And I was honestly kind of happy when I was done.