Where the Crawdads Sing Book Review
Author: Delia Owens
Genre: Coming of Age , Historical Fiction, Mystery
To be honest, I didn’t have strong feelings about reading this book. In reality, I was quite disinclined. The Book summary seemed just okay, and the genre of the book viz Historical fiction based in 1969 didn’t excite me much. The name of the book and its cover weren’t encouraging either. I was being cautious of not ending up with something dull or depressing. But the rave reviews the book has on Goodreads pushed me into taking a chance. Moreover, it was one of those days when I was itching to order a few books at least. And so, ended up owning this one.
Where the Crawdads Sing : Book Review
The book summary doesn’t justify the book. In fact, after having read the book, I feel the book summary is pretty out of place and even deceptive (not in a negative sense, of course). It projects the story as a murder mystery, which it is not. Of course, there is a murder, but the book is so much more than just that. It is about a little girl growing up to be a fiery and amazing woman, against all odds. And about her courage amidst the persistent existential dangers and the recurring emotional turmoils. It is about the kindness of a few that eases out her struggles for survival. The book also brings forth the vainness of cultural norms that pit humans against each other. It is about Kya’s love for the Marsh that is not just her home but her family too. It is about Kya’s intimacy with nature and her knowledge of the world around her. And lastly but most profoundly, it is about experiencing a young girl’s emotions and seeing her grow into a woman much too mature and yet childlike at the core.
Kya is a girl/woman of substance and a force to reckon. I could have never imagined meeting a person like her in a book with a book summary like this. (Okay, I am stuck up with the book summary because it is in no way a precise depiction of the book.) It’s engaging how loves of different forms have been treated by the author. And how human “evolutionary tendencies” have been juxtaposed with love. There are elements of biology discussed throughout the book, and it’s beautiful how conveniently the author has weaved it with Kya’s state of mind and inner dialogue.
Throughout the book, there are references to intricate poems, which I’ll be frank, I didn’t understand a lot (Owing to the limited capabilities of the right brain). Even the writing is not that convenient esp. the descriptions about the Marsh. But it does make me want to read the book again, to understand all that I couldn’t the first time. If the book was just a murder mystery (as the summary suggests. Delia Owens, you are underplaying your book with a summary like that), I wouldn’t have thought of reading it again. But the depth of Kya’s mind and her existence makes me want to know more and read more.
Coming to the story, it successfully keeps one hooked and has been intelligently done for the most part. There is a fair amount of suspense, a play of emotions, and a mix of characters. You’d develop a connection with Kya from the onset of the book and like her even more, with every turn of a page. There is a sweet love that will tug at your heartstrings and even make you cry. I like how the story moves from one place to a completely different place, not physically, you know, but in terms of circumstances.
All in all, I liked the book and will give it another reading very soon. (Not in 2020, though. It’s already December, and I have two more books to read this year and this month). All that said, I am not pleased with the ending. I appreciate the effort because it does seem that the author tried to do an out-of-the-box ending. But I think the final pages were a bit unnecessary and not a smooth close to an otherwise out-of-the-box story.
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Happy Reading. Chao!
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