Monday, September 26, 2011
State of Wonder -- Review
State of Wonder by Ann Patchett definitely lived up to its hype.
What? You haven't heard the hype?
Well, Ann Patchett weaves a wonderful spell with her words beginning in Minnestoa where Marina works in a pharmaceutical lab and finds out her lab partner who traveled to South America is dead. Amid complications of an affair with her boss and a mentoring relationship with the scientist who is working in the Amazon, Marina travels to South America to get answers about her dead friend and the miracle drug that can allow women to bear children into their 70s.
Funny that this is the second book I've read in a month about a scientist working on a miracle drug and someone needing to track the scientist down. (Hector and the Secrets of Love)
Patchett's picture of the Amazon as both wondrous and miserable had me feeling the heat and itching from the bug bites. Her characters are marvelously alive. Some of them unlikeable and others, like Easter, the deaf boy from a neighboring tribe, are so loveable that I wanted to sneak him home with me.
My favorite line in the book was about Easter. As Marina is falling in love with the little boy, she thinks, "So he had been a cannibal once, if only in another lifetime. In light of all that had happened it was hardly worth mentioning."
The book was not one to undertake in one long gulp. I spread it throughout the week and felt gratitude in the end, although some questions remained unanswered.
I definitely recommend it.
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