Saturday, January 12, 2013

Winesburg, Ohio, Sherwood Anderson

The writer, an old man with a white mustache, had some difficulty in getting into bed. The windows of the house in which he lived were high and he wanted to look at the trees when he awoke in the morning.

This is the story of the small town of Winesburg, and the various inhabitants of it. They all have an interesting past, or secrets that they are hiding. Each chapter deals primarily with a different person of the town. There are some really amazing character sketches; so many complex people, not necessarily "bad", but necessarily "good" either. According to the back cover, this novel "gave birth to the American story cycle, for which William Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and later writers were forever indebted." I don't like F. Scott Fitzgerald much, and I've never read Faulkner, but I did definitely enjoy this one.

Not all that much happens in the novel, but each chapter brings another small event that has resonating significance. Anderson conceals nothing, revealing the bad and the good of each person. No one is simple, nothing is simple, except for the language. The writing is very blunt, but also very descriptive; you can almost feel yourself in this small Ohio town, living and breathing the history of its residents.

I didn't love Winesburg, Ohio, but I definitely liked it. It is a very interesting and honest portrayal of a small town and what really lies beneath the surface. It reminded me a little bit of The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, though I don't remember it that well since I read it a while ago.

Overall, Winesburg, Ohio is a complex and fairly engaging book. It wasn't amazing, but it was enjoyable. However, it's not one of those books that I feel compelled to write tons about. Don't get me wrong though. I did like it.

252 pages.
Very Good! I would recommend this book!

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