I have not read anything like this. I am one of those in love with her latest book, I know, but trust me on this one. The Heart is a Lonely Hunter is sad, beautiful, indescribable.
As I closed the last page, it is not that I do not like the end, it is a feeling that I want to keep living in that town, with the characters that I have met. I want to know more about them, to keep listening to them.
And to believe this woman was only twenty three when she wrote this book.
What to quote? Just this,
The car he chose was almost empty. When he was settled he opened the crate of strawberries and picked them over with finicky care. The berries were of a giant size, large as walnuts and in full-blown ripeness. The green leaves at the top of the rich-colored fruit were like tiny bouquets. Singer put a berry in his mouth and though the juice had a lush, wild sweetness there was already a subtle flavor of decay. He ate until his palate was dulled by the taste and then rewrapped the crate and placed it on the rack above him.
And the first sentence,
In the town there were two mutes, and they were always together.
I came to this book through the Ambleside Online Forum, and from Karen Glass who said she loved the book. I knew it will be sad, but there is sad and disturbing, and sad and beautiful. This is that last combination. It may stir different feelings in you, we all have different reservations and reactions when it comes to books. It has left me a sweet memory and I am glad I have met Mick and her family, most specially her dad, Portia, Doctor Copeland, Biff, Jake, Harry…
I am almost finished with That Hideous Strength too, which I am enjoying, but I feel like abandoning The Talisman by Scott, at 64% of the book. I was enchanted by the beginning, the conversation between Sir Kenneth and the Saracen, but now, frankly, I am not that excited to know what else happens, not that much into the characters and their talk either. Although this year is the first year I have left books unfinished without remorse, it is still hard to abandon a book, specially when you know it has value.
I have to make room, though, for our upcoming Book Club at Ambleside Online Forum, where we will be reading Frankenstein together.