Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
There were some things I liked but a lot that made me very uncomfortable. The biggest seller of this book is that it is the story of a marriage and the author tells it in two parts. It's wonderfully written in that way. I loved the way both parties tell their stories (in third person). I also really liked that the author did not write either character as good or bad. They are both human and both insecure yet their insecurities play out a little differently. They definitely have different childhoods.
What I didn't like about this book is more extensive. I thought it was a lot pretentious. There was a lot of reference to a lot of literature. With a Master's degree in Fine Arts - writing, I'm sure I would have been privy to the subtle ironies and metaphors. Without that degree, I missed a lot. I was glad I was reading on a Kindle so I could look up some of the stories, artists, legends, etc. But that got exhausting so I missed much of that.
Even so, I really did like the take on Antigone best. It was a different telling of Antigone on stage and the reader immediately sees the analogy of the current story. Later, the Antigone story takes on a much more interesting shade as more details emerge on the other side of the marriage.
My other beef with the book is that these two characters seem to completely lack a moral compass. Everything is solved with sex. All their problems and woes are addressed with some form of sex. And there are a lot of forms of sex. It could be said that they were loyal to one another which shows a moral compass but I am holding strong to my stance that sex is what both characters turn to when they are struggling. It was uncomfortable. Very uncomfortable.
Be prepared for way more sex than literary enlightenment.