Monday, January 6, 2014

Review: A Disobedient Girl - Ru Freeman

6350150A Disobedient Girl
Ru Freeman
Series: N/A
Genre: Historical Fiction, Contemporary
Rating: 3.25 out of 5 stars
Word Rating: Alright
On Goodreads

This book left an awkward taste in my mouth. I didn't know whether to love it or just put it down and move on. Half of this book is utterly fantastic and then it dips into a state where I become totally apathetic. And I hate the end.

There isn't much to be said about diction, syntax, etc. It's pretty standard, nothing special, nothing terrible. That isn't a criticism, because the novel is far more story-central and focuses on revealing bits without giving too much to the deliverance so I understand that a consistent narrative voice (well, voices) was preferred.

First, Latha and Biso, our protags. Both of our protags represent paths of the oppressed. Both are strong willed: Latha steals from the family she works for because she believes she deserves it, and Biso leaves her husband. Don't worry, these aren't spoilers this happens within the first few pages.

The only problem here is that, while I sympathize with Latha and Biso's situations and where they are coming from, I still did not like either of them much. Latha was reckless, getting pregnant, and she sometimes became more snobby than Thara does (don't talk to me about any secondary characters, they're all hella horrible jerks and perfect representations of the disgusting, patronizing patriarchy and caste-system. I died a little when Thara turned into an elite, stuck up bitch.

I don't truly sympathize with either character, because Latha is immature and rash, and often callous. Meanwhile Biso can be strong but opts to be weak (won't spoil anything). Don't get me wrong, like I said, their situations displayed the socio-economic state of Sri Lanka well, and though vague and subtle, there were wonderful bits of commentary by Ru Freeman. However, there wasn't enough to give the book meat on its bones, and none of these characters really developed from being who they were at the start of the boo, and Latha has a child and goes through, like, twenty years of suffering including being sent to a covenant . . . you think that would make her change her attitude slightly or at least make her want to leave.

I can't say much but that this book was a big disappointment. I really would have liked to see more connections being made and a faster plot revelation. It's good, but there's too much left out.

- Marlon

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