So What Are You Reading?

Reviews of Books.

Monday, September 04, 2006


Nothing Natural. JennyDiski

I found this to be a powerful book that delved deeply into the life of a woman named Rachel who becomes involved in a sadomasochistic relationship with an emotionally distant man. Initially I felt the title referred to this s&m relationship. However, as the author reveals more of Rachel's life, it appears that there is nothing natural in her emotionally starved world. Her parents fought bitterly when she was a child. She struggles with paralyzing spells of depression and is incapable of emotional closeness. She is delightfully articulate and quick witted - an intelligent woman with a large share of emotional distress. We watch her spiraling deeper into a suicidal state and it takes a strong reader to maintain compassion. Finally her darkest hour passes, and the novel ends with her first steps towards a healthier self concept. Compelling reading and wonderful character development - a great first novel.

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