“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.”

-Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Untidy Endings

     My mom and I decided to do our own version of a mother/daughter book club last week so we selected a book and she listened to it on her way to and from work and I read the traditional version.  The book we chose was The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall.  It's a middle grade novel one of her co-workers recommended that has been quite popular with actual mother/daughter book clubs.  We both enjoyed it, especially because it was reminiscent of some of our childhood favorites like Little Women. We especially enjoyed discussing it as we went.  I think my mother and I could talk books until the cows came home.  One thing we were in agreement on was that the villain was thoroughly vile and neither of us were satisfied that she got what she deserved at the end.  The book is the first in a series so we can only hope there will be some serious remorse on the part of the children's nemesis in subsequent books.  I must say, especially after such a superior ending in Egg and Spoon, the conclusion can make or break a great book.  If there is a villain, a truly, vile bad guy, then said villain needs to be adequately punished or even better, they need to go through a glorious redemption.  In The Penderwicks I didn't feel that this was accomplished.  I guess I'll just have to read the next one to see what happens.  After all, the rest of the characters were delightful, and the story was charming, right up until the unsatisfactory finish.
photo credit: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/fliegender/571543296/">fliegender</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">cc</a>

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