Book Review: The Poisonwood Bible

The Poisonwood Bible
Author: Barbara Kingsolver
Number of Pages: 543
Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction
Where I Got It: Library

I read this book in high school as required reading, but use the term read very loosely as I did my usual wait till the last minute then skim like hell to get the general gist routine that allowed me to squeak by.

Hailey told me I should go back and read it as this is one of her all-time favorites, if not her number one fave, and she has great recommendations so I tried it. And am I ever glad I did.

The story is about the Price family who move from Georgia to the village of Kilanga in the Congo in 1959 as their father, a devout Baptist minister, has taken a job as a missionary. As the family tries to acclimate to their new and completely different lifestyle, they also must deal with the political ramifications of the Congo moving toward democracy and independence from Belgium.

The story is told from the point of view of all five women in the Price family: the mother Orleanna and her four daughters Rachel, Leah, Ada and Ruth May.

The writing is absolutely beautiful. While the family is struggling collectively to adapt to their new situation, each individual character has their own inner struggles to deal with. They each evolve completely differently and each have their own completely different realizations about who they are and where their life is headed. Kingsolver makes each character their own complete person, even down to 5-year-old Ruth May.

I think this book is one that you will either love or hate and I loved it. It made me laugh at certain points, it almost brought me to tears at one point, and I got a mini-history lesson out of it. At times it was a bit too long. But everything about it is really genius. Too much to describe or try to explain... you'll just have to find out for yourself.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars (for being a bit too long)

Coming Up Next: Whatever You Do, Don't Run by Peter Allison
Peter Allison took a trip to Africa at the age of 19 and never left. In this memoir, Allison shares his stories as a safari guide and his encounters with the African wilderness. From charging lions to drowning his jeep in a lagoon full of hippos, these hilarious true tales takes you to where the wild things are and introduces you to a place where every day is a new adventure!

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