So, I’m thinking that maybe I read this book at the wrong time. It had every reason to be fabulous in my book, and I would certainly rank it in the top 5 for this year, but I think that if I had sat down with this book a few weeks ago (when I had copious reading time), I would have ranked it a little higher–but I must be true.
The story is about Calliope/Cal who announces at the beginning of the book that she was born twice, first as a girl and second as a boy. Thus ensues the saga of the Stephanides family over three generations beginning with Desdemona and Lefty in Greece all the way to Calliope’s transformation at the age of 14. Cal is a wonderful storyteller–amusing, engaging, endearing, he really wants his story to be told. Thus comes the problem I had with the book–its too freaking long! Again, I’m probably saying this because of my reading time (or lack thereof due to househunting and various travels across Texas–which are not about to end unfortunately).
With that said, this is a great book and I think that it has a little of something in it for everyone. I’m not sure yet if I would recommend it to my mom (for some reason that’s how I usually base my recommendations) mainly because of the sexual nature of the novel. I think, though, that it’s hard not to take an interest in this matter. Some of the questions that arise are incredibly interesting–and will continue to be hot topics I’m sure. Whether or not gender is inherited or learned, what place to transgendered or transsexual individuals have within society, and on and on. I appreciated the perspective that Eugenides provided, and I will be looking to read more of his work in the future.