Saturday, December 25, 2010

Review of Stoner

Well, here I am again. It's December and I am so far behind in my book reviews that I'm going to have to dig deep into the recesses of my brain to remember books I read in July before I had our baby. So bear with me if the next few reviews aren't the greatest.

My Dad recommended Stoner to me because he thought it was such an interesting and well written book. It was. But it was also kind of a downer.

William Stoner grew up poor on a farm in the midwest in the early part of the 20th Century. He was an only child and his parents saved everything they earned to send him to college to study agriculture. But instead he falls in love with the classics and studies literature, going on to become a professor at the university he attended.

Stoner is about as repressed as they come, marrying the first woman he is ever attracted to, which of course is a complete disaster (we could have all told him that, right?). His career is stymied by a venal colleague who keeps Stoner from advancing due to a disagreement, and his life is generally depressing (except for a passionate affair he has with a student which ends sadly).

While I appreciated the caliber of John Williams' writing, Stoner was not the light summer read I had been looking for.


No comments: