Thursday, June 3, 2010
Half Broke Horses
This book is the story of Jeannette Walls' maternal grandmother, Lily Casey Smith, who had a very interesting life, to say the least. Jeannette writes about her grandmother from stories her mother has told and retold Jeannette throughout her life. In the epilogue, Jeannette says that the vast majority of these stories she was able to verify going through records (court, newspaper, etc.). This is amazing, considering the shock value of some of the stories told.
I would highly recommend this book if you have read The Glass Castle. If you haven't, I would recommend them both to you.
I will admit that this book didn't quite live up to the reading experience you have in The Glass Castle. Mostly because you're not going to be getting exasperated over and over at someone in this book... ::cough cough:: Rex Walls ::cough cough:: However, you will get irritated by a person here and there, plus the situations that Lily Casey Smith gets thrown at her.
Don't read what I just wrote the wrong way, this is a great book and I loved it. I just didn't feel my blood pressure rising in anger with this story, more I just felt like Lily kept getting antagonized over and over throughout her life. She was definitely a spit-fire with a strong backbone and kept coming back for more! I commend her and loved her character.
If you have read neither book, it doesn't really matter which you read first because one does not necessarily require the story of the other. However, I will say that this book provides a more insightful view into Rosemary's character, Jeannette's mother/Lily's daughter. There were a lot of things that occurred early on in Rosemary's life that helped me understand why she acted the way she did in The Glass Castle. That doesn't necessarily excuse her behavior, but it does provide some perspective into her background that I didn't feel I had before.
Donna and I discussed my take on Rosemary's character after I had finished the book, and she hadn't thought much about this. Did anyone else feel this way about Rosemary upon finishing Half Broke Horses?
This is a very quick read, I believe I read this in less than a 24 hour period. If you are looking for a quick and interesting read, go for this one!