Monday, January 23, 2012

Book Review: The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough

This book was given to me on my birthday last year, so I think it's appropriate that I review it on my birthday this year.  For the record, it came from my now brother in law, then just Sugar Bear's boyfriend.  He had heard about how much I love drama and thought this was a fairly good soap opera type book.  And of course it is a very classic story that spans generations and is full of the dramz.  Maggie Cleary and her forbiden love, Father Ralph are the focus of the story, which is set in Australia surrounding World War II.

Writing
I honestly didn't really find it to be exceptional.  I've read many reviews on Goodreads saying otherwise, but I wasn't terribly impressed.  I didn't fall in love with any of the characters and at parts the plot dragged.  I did find the descriptions of Australia and New Zealand to be stunning.

Entertainment Value
Decent.  I wasn't blown away by the drama in it the way I expected to be.  But I think part of that is that I'm reading it at a time when so much more is available to us in the way of family drama.  When the book was released in 1977, I think the idea of a priest having an affair and illegitimate child would have been a lot more shocking than it is now.  Which is kind of sad.  But in a time when sex scandals involving priests are much more horrific, I kind of felt like "ok, and...?"  That said, the book still held my interest.  It's a long book and I didn't consider giving up on it at any points. 

Overall
I'd give it a try if you're a fan of romance novels, family dramas, or Australian historical fiction.  As I mentioned in the writing review, there are some beautiful descriptions of the Austalian landscape.  It's a decent read, but after a steady diet of shows like The OC and One Tree Hill (yes I watched both) I didn't find it as shocking as I think it would have been for readers in the 70's.

4 comments:

  1. Recently found your blog and have enjoyed reading your reviews. I appreciate that you don't love EVERY book your review and your willingness to say what you don't like lends your reviews more credence with me. Thanks. Oh, I like your dogs. They are quite handsome.
    Keep reading and reviewing!
    Kim from SC

    ReplyDelete
  2. It was a great TV miniseries available on DVD still popular all over the world and there's a Kindle Select "making of" book that's interesting too.

    ReplyDelete
  3. It was a great TV miniseries available on DVD still popular all over the world and there's a Kindle Select "making of" book that's interesting too.

    ReplyDelete