joaneh, May 4, 2008 (view all comments by joaneh)
This book of Jane Hamilton's "The Book of Ruth", is even better than her "A Map of the World". It is a bare bones look at the sad, yet humorous life of a young girl in a small town as she comes of age in total innocence. The small town characters are well-developed and believable. It was a very good read.
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gingersnaps15, June 7, 2007 (view all comments by gingersnaps15)
I reread this book at least twice a year. Ruth is prtrayed as a homely dreamer who turns out to have a lot more going on than people suspected. All the characters, while not symapthetic people, are given touches of beauty where you can see how they are not all bad. The descriptions Ruth gives are marvelous, and this book turned me on to other great Jane Hamilton novels. This is one of my favorites
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"An extraordinary story of a family's disintegration....Will be compared to Jane Smiley's A Thousand Acres. Astonishingly vivid and moving."
by Entertainment Weekly,
"An enthralling tale of guilt, betrayal, and the terrifying ways of our lives."
by Kirkus Reviews,
"Unforgettably, beat by beat, Hamilton maps the best and worst of the human heart and all the mysterious, uncharted country in between."
"An American beauty this book....The narrator of Jane Hamilton's sensational first novel is a holy lusty innocent."
Winner of the 1989 PEN/Hemingway Foundation Award for best first novel, this exquisite book confronts real-life issues of alienation and violence from which the author creates a stunning testament to the human capacity for mercy, compassion and love.
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