#ThrowbackThursdayBookstagram for this week showcases BEL CANTO by Ann Patchett.
I knew from an early age that I was not a “literary” reader or writer. While I’m drawn to words and how they are arranged, I’m also drawn to stories with engaging plotlines. The books don’t need to be action packed, per se, but something has to happen. I cannot truly enjoy a book loaded with expository backstory or page upon page of description for a single leaf blowing in the wind. So I knew going into Bel Canto, a work of literary fiction, that it might not be my cup of tea. But so many people liked it that I took the plunge.
And what I confirmed is that the book is, indeed, not my cup of tea. It does, however, have value. I’ve gone back to the book time and again to look at the sentence structure and word choices, which has been helpful in my journey to being a better writer. I’ve also thought about the importance of music, in both life and in writing, and so I can honestly say that Patchett’s writing has affected me positively. For that, I’m grateful. And I’m not the only person who is. As one reader said, “How did Patchett do this? A seemingly horrifying event turned into a mystical one. Where lines of good vs evil are blurred. Where time is suspended . . . She details a portrait in which I bear witness.”
We all look for different things in different books, and to be quite frank, 239,926 people probably aren’t wrong (that’s how many 3+ reviews the book has on Goodreads). If literary fiction is your jam, I say go for this one.
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