Monday 21 May 2007

The Grandmothers by Doris Lessing

I gave up. I threw in the towel. I just couldn't go on. I very rarely give up on a book. You can see evidence of this in my reading list on the left. I've been reading The Plot against America for at least 6 months. And Human Traces has sat on the bedside since before this blog was born. Should probably add that to the bottom of the list.

My sister recommended a Doris Lessing book to someone. I thought to myself, "Gee, I've never read anything by this Doris Lessing person. Who the heck is Doris Lessing?" I mentioned this to a neighber and she picked up a collection of short stories by the author at the library for me.

I read the first story about two women who have been friends since childhood (5 years old or so). They marry, live just down the street from each other and have a son each. As the sons enter puberty and their late teen years, the women have misplaced their husbands and decide to exchange sons and take them into their beds. This sent me beyond the pale.

I thought the story was so awful I dreaded reading another. I started to read the second short story but when that started to be all a bit too strange for words I set it aside hoping that the time would soon come for the book to be returned to the library.

I have given the book back to the neighbour and thanked her for the thought. Don't think I'll be looking at anything else by Doris Lessing.

Steph - You been drinking the KoolAid?


Janell said...

I read a collection of Doris Lessing's short stories entitled (I think) "Africa Stories." I found them well-written, but a bit depressing. She also wrote a series of Science fiction stories, but I haven't read these. They were supposed to be a commentary on the colonization of Africa.
i think I'll skip "The Grandmothers." That's the hazard of being a voracious reader - sometimes you run into a stinker.

stephanie said...

I don't think I recommended this read. I have read "Africa Stories" but I don't remember enjoying it. It most have been someone else. Or, I have memory loss.