Saturday, October 25, 2008
The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd
Until the last 80 pages of this book, I was sure it was going to be a 3* read. Meaning I have been entertained, I have thought a little about what I am reading and that I have found the story flowing nicely along some safe streets, wandered before. The story of middleaged Jessie, and her facing her demons and looking at her life has been told many times before. And maybe also in better ways than in the Mermaid Chair. But there are some wonderful descriptions in this book, and in the book's best moment you can feel the nature, the sceneries and the interaction of the characters, and that is what makes this book rank a bit higher than 'just' 3*. Jessie leaves her husband Hugh in their home, as she is somewhat reluctantly forced to go to the island of her childhood to take care of her mother. The mother, Nelle, is sick and very disturbed, and Jessie soon senses that something she does not know about is going on. Jessie herself faces her childhood demons, and the reader also senses that there must be more to the story. The story is taking another turn, when Jessie falls in love with a monk from the nearby monestary. But all things are connected, either directly or in-directly. Also the Mermaid Chair plays an important role in Jessie's life, in all the characters lives in fact. What makes me rate this 4* instead of the 3* planned is the pace and happenings of the last 80 pages of the book. Happenings that made me think and feel.