The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Gilbert is an incredibly talented author who writes beautiful prose and provides pondering points in human history. I love a good novel that incorporates history and intellect while maintaining the integrity of the writing process. Gilbert does this and ties many but not all of the themes together. I understand why readers have rated this book so highly. It is difficult to summarize the huge task of Gilbert's novel. Yet for all the positive points I've listed, it simply failed to engage me. The story does not gallop or trot. It spreads as slowly as Alma's moss. Moss does not fascinate me. Ambrose's orchids did not fascinate me. I drew the conclusion of the symbolism and appreciated it but I found the story far too slow and inclusive of every thought that crosses Alma's brilliant mind, every sexual fantasy of Alma's frustrated "quim" and frankly, I completely missed the point of those interludes.
I don't know why I don't stop reading a book after the first 50 pages or so if it hasn't grabbed my attention. For this I apologize. This novel has received rave reviews. Besides a few a-ha moments, I thought the story was pointless and somewhat redundant.
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