Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Ironweed

 
 
I finished our July book today, and while I wouldn't recommend it to everyone, I thought it was an interesting read. And as I wrote a few days ago, redemption and absolution seems to be the theme as of late. It was a fairly bleak book in a lot of ways, but I felt a little more hopeful at the end.
 
One cool thing in the book was recognizing what the author was referencing when he wrote about the main character seeing the ghostly figures (all in his imagination) of the major women in his life, and they were busily weaving and sewing. Those three women represented The Fates from Greek and Roman mythology. Francis's mother was weaving, and she was Clothos, who weaves the fabric of our lives; his early love, Katrina, was measuring out the cloth, playing Lachesis, who measures the length of our lives; and his later love, Helen, was cutting the thread, the job of Atropos, who cuts the thread and ends our lives. All of these merge into Annie, his wife and the love of his life.
 
Good stuff. My childhood obsession with mythology pays off!
 
In my tiny grade school, I checked out every book they had on mythology--mostly Greek and Roman, but there was a little Norse thrown in there, too. Our librarians noticed my interest, and they were so pleased with my love of reading, they came to me with a tome of books they could order, and said, "Pick out whatever book you want, and we'll order it for you." Were they cool, or what? I remember picking out a very large and comprehensive book...I wonder if they kept it in the library, and if anyone else ever checked it out? As I think about it now, it must have been so gratifying for these grade school librarians to see a kid who loved to read so much. It sure does MY heart good when I see it now!
 
Next up for the book club is Tobacco Road (Erskine Caldwell), which I read a few years ago and loved. I'm looking forward to reading it again. In the meantime, I've got quite a bit of time to read other things, so I might have to pull up something fun, like revisiting my book about the American Mafia. I got sidetracked from it a while back, for some reason, and a little light summer reading might fit the bill! <grin>

3 comments:

helmswondermom said...

"pull up something fun, like . . . book about the American Mafia."?? lol
I'm glad you found some good in Ironweed.  I don't think I'll be in the mood for it anytime soon, though.  I was fascinated by mythology when I was a kid, too.  I think it was 7th grade that we spent a whole 9 weeks studying Greek and Roman mythology, and that got me started.  Hmmm.  Eler Beth is a 7th grader now.  I think we just may spend a little time on a mythology unit.  Hadn't thought of that!
Lori

krmprm said...

I also loved "Tobacco Road" and "Grapes of Wrath" and
"Catcher In The Rye" and I read them when they were
the most risque and ribald books of the time.  We've
come a long way since then, but still good reading.  Pat

jmoqueen said...

Glad you enjoyed the book.  Your right it is good when kids get into books.  My little sister loves reading :o)

Jenny

http://journals.aol.co.uk/Jmoqueen/MyLife