Friday, October 8, 2010

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

No spoilers.

The Bell Jar
Author: Sylvia Plath
Year of Publication: 1963
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 229
First Line: "It was a queer, sultry summer, the summer they electrocuted the Rosenbergs, and I didn't know what I was doing in New York."
Summary:Esther, an A-student from Boston who has won a guest editorship on a national magazine, finds a bewildering new world at her feet. Her New York life is crowded with possibilities, so that the choice of future is overwhelming, but she can no longer retreat into the safety of her past. Deciding she wants to be a writer above all else, Esther is also struggling with the perennial problems of morality, behaviour and identity. In this compelling autobiographical novel, a milestone in contemporary literature, Sylvia Plath chronicles her teenage years - her disappointments, anger, depression and eventual breakdown and treatment - with stunning wit and devastating honesty.

Source: Here

Review: I liked this a lot more than I expected to. I found it to be a lot like The Catcher in the Rye. The style was very similar, and, the more books I read with this style, the more I enjoy it. It's very conversational and simple, but somehow timeless. Plath wrote realistically, taking much from her own life and inserting it into this novel. It's a spectacular book and if you haven't read it, you should.

Worst part: Some of the characters were tough to keep track of. It was a bit like an Austen novel in that way -- I always have a hard time keeping track of characters in books like this.

Best part: The ending worked really well for this book.

Grade: A

Other Books by This Author: Various selections of poetry.

66 / 50 books. 132% done!

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