jumpergirl3005, December 4, 2008 (view all comments by jumpergirl3005)
While Pigs in Heaven is not as good as the first book The Bean Trees, it is still worth reading. We start to discover more about Turtle's biological family, and we get to see a stronger mother and daughter relationship between Turtle and Taylor. Barbara Kingsolver has done a wonderful job on her sequal. If you read the Bean Tress this book is worth reading.
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cristalc, August 17, 2008 (view all comments by cristalc)
What a scathing review for such a fabulous read! I couln't disagree more. I found the characters believable, endearing and well defined. The book took me through a whole range of emotions, which to me is telling about the author's intent and accomplishment. I thought the subject matter was engaging and unique, and the story gave me an intimate view of what modern day life might be like for Native American tribes. I cherished it from start to finish.
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colbyfriend, May 9, 2008 (view all comments by colbyfriend)
I need to preface my comments by saying that Kingsolver's book, Poisonwood Bible, was amazing. Pigs in Heaven, however, is terrible. The reader is told the characters are admirable and beautiful but one would never tell from their actions in the story as the characters blunder through their non-plot. If the characters would communicate there would be no novel, so the plot has all the inspired crisis of a Three's Company episode, except, not at all comical. Moreover, Kingsolver will not stop bombarding us with useless information which makes the story drag. "The corners of Taylor's mouth turn down as she rips open the laundry detergent and pours in the green smelling contents." Who cares Barbara? Nobody needs to know that sentence, and green is not a smell! And that is just a tear in the bucket of useless descriptions of useless events. Make some choices already. This book would have been better if I read every sixth word. There is one character who worships Barbie. I think Kingsolver worships Barbie since her "admirable" main character is apparently a leggy twit. Oh, and that gratuitous chapter where the characters go on the Oprah Winfrey Show was a cheap and obvious attempt to get in the book club. Pigs in Heaven is a poor showing after that true masterpiece, The Poisonwood Bible.
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"Publishers Weekly Review"
by Publishers Weekly,
Taylor Greer and her adopted Cherokee daughter Turtle, first met in The Bean Trees, will captivate readers anew in Kingsolver's assured and eloquent sequel, which mixes wit, wisdom and the expert skills of a born raconteur into a powerfully affecting narrative. Now six years old and still bearing psychological marks of the abuse that occured before she was rescued by Taylor, Turtle is discovered by formidable Indian lawyer Annawake Fourkiller, who insists that the child be returned to the Cherokee Nation. Taylor reacts by fleeing her Tucson home with Turtle to begin a precarious existence on the road; skirting the edge of poverty and despair, she eventually realizes that Turtle has become emotionally unmoored. In taking a fresh look at the Solomonic dilemma of choosing between two equally valid claims on a child's life, Kingsolver achieves the admirable feat of making the reader understand and sympathize with both sides of the controversy, as she contrasts Taylor's inalterable mother's love with Annawake's determination to save Turtle from the stigmatization she can expect from white society. The chronicle acquires depth and humor when Kingsolver integrates the story of Taylor's mother Alice, a woman who believes that the Greers are "doomed to be a family with no men in it" (that she is proven wrong adds a delicious element of romance to the story). Alice's resolve to help her daughter takes her into the heart of the Cherokee Nation and results in an astonishing but credible meshing of lives. In the end, both justice and compassion are served. Kingsolver's intelligent consideration of issues of family and culture — both in her evocation of Native American society and in her depiction of the plight of a single mother — brims with insight and empathy. Every page of this beautifully controlled narrative offers prose shimmering with imagery and honed to simple lyric intensity. In short, the delights of superior fiction can be experienced here. Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
by Boston Globe,
"Immensely readable, warmhearted...brim[ming] with down-home wisdom and endearing characters."
by Kirkus Reviews,
"Not the truly wonderful book it might have been — characters who seem important disappear; carefully marked trails turn out to be merely picaresque, leading nowhere — but a terrific read nonetheless."
by Los Angeles Times Book Review,
"That rare combination of a dynamic story told in dramatic language, combined with issues that are serious, debatable and painful...[it's] about the human heart in all its shapes and ramifications."
"Breathtaking...unforgettable....This profound, funny, bighearted novel, in which people actually find love and kinship in surprising places, is also heavenly....A rare feat and a triumph."
by San Francisco Chronicle,
"Kingsolver makes you care about her characters to the point of tears; she is bitingly funny — and she writes like a dream."
by The Washington Post Book World,
"There is no one quite like Barbara Kingsolver in contemporary literature. Her dialogue sparkles with sassy wit and the earthy poetry of ordinary folks' talk; her descriptions have a magical lyricism rooted in daily life but also on familiar terms with the eternal."
by Publishers Weekly,
"[A]ssured and eloquent...mixes wit, wisdom and the expert skills of a born raconteur into a powerfully affecting narrative....Every page of this beautifully controlled narrative offers prose shimmering with imagery and honed to simple lyric intensity."
With 18 weeks and counting on the New York Times bestseller list and more than 220,000 copies sold, this winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Award for Fiction continues the story of Taylor and Turtle, first introduced in The Bean Trees. Dramatic, rich in character, and vividly honest, Pigs in Heaven is Kingsolver's most compelling work to date.
by Harper Collins,
A phenomenal bestseller and winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Award for fiction, Pigs in Heaven continues the story of Taylor and Turtle, first introduced in The Bean Trees.
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