A small group of seven gathered at Connie’s home yesterday to discuss John Grisham’s non-legal story, A Painted House. Set in 1952 Arkansas, it is a slice of life tale of small time cotton growers.
All in attendance agreed that the book’s greatest flaw was in Grisham’s choice of making his lead character and narrator a seven-year-old boy, whose recall and maturity of thought was unrealistic, as was his ability to carry out the chore of painting his family’s house. Some readers found that the story had no strong center, others that it took too long to get to the point. All that said, there were some strong points to the novel, including the sense of time and place, the rendering of community, and the depiction of awe at the technological invention of television.
No one hated the book, but the response was not in general highly enthusiastic. On to our next selection