Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Review: The Giant's House by Elizabeth McCracken

The Giant's House: A Romance (P.S.) The Giant's House: A Romance by Elizabeth McCracken

Book synopsis from Goodreads:
An unlikely love story about a lonely spinster librarian and a younger man, forced into loneliness because of his monstrous size. Peggy Cort, the reclusive librarian in a small Cape Cod town falls for a boy 14 years her junior -- one who grows to be 8 feet 7 inches and 415 pounds. Though initially attracted out of sympathy, Peggy soon finds she has much in common with this sensitive, albeit enormous man. A romance ensues, but the unique connectedness they share -- something neither has ever felt before -- is cruelly interrupted by tragedy.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a little gem this book turned out to be! this is my first McCracken novel and I really enjoyed it. I see why her novels often get so much buzz. This was a really odd book with really odd characters who ultimately weaseled themselves into my heart!

The story was rather unique and refreshing but what I loved most was the writing. There were moments when I'd go back and read a passage several times because it was so eloquently written. The story is quirky and the characters are equally quirky. They are all flawed and strange and fascinating. I wasn't sure what to make of any of it at first but after awhile I was amazed at how attached I became to each character, flaws and all. That's one thing that I found really well done in this book - characters that were so well written - flaws and all - that they truly felt real to me. I never felt as if I was reading about fictional characters, if that makes sense.

It's a bit dark and not particularly uplifting but its an incredible character study. If you can get beyond the morose quality of the story itself, I think you''ll find characters that keep you captivated. I would not in any way call this novel a love story as the cover states. I think that can be misleading to potential readers. Although its a story about love and there are elements of a love story, it is in no way a traditional love story. It's bigger than that and ultimately more impactful (in my opinion). I really enjoyed this one and plan to seek out more of Elizabeth McCracken's work. I just love her way with words and her ability to create memorable characters.

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