Monday, December 9, 2013
My Favorite Books to Give: Women’s Fiction
Women’s fiction is such a tricky genre to classify. I’ve found that this term tends to make people think more Sex and the City instead of The Handmaid’s Tale. I use it to describe the latter—strong literary fiction written by a strong woman, and often (but not always) containing themes related to feminism. Based on my personal definition, women’s fiction is one of my very favorite genres.And this is one of my new-found favorite books in this genre.
The Hours by Michael Cunningham has something in common with The Keep (from my last entry): I saw the movie first. I enjoyed the film, especially Nicole Kidman’s portrayal of Virginia Woolf. Again, like The Keep, I later saw the book at Goodwill and picked it up for later.Later, as it turns out, was over Thanksgiving. I ripped through this novel in three days. Or, I should say, this book ripped through me. As good as the film was at showing the superficial action of the book in the form of the intertwining stories of three women, it did little to capture the subtle and riveting undertones of love, mortality, and despair that permeate this novel.
If you have any Margaret Atwood fans in your life, I strongly suggest The Hours as a holiday gift. It is a book that grabs you, holds you, and then stays with you long after you close the cover.