I'm sorry to be a discordant voice, but this novel has not convinced me. The positives are there, and for this I'm glad to have read: the narrative technique, the abundance of similarities and metaphors, the fact that the voice narrative is that of a woman, while the author is a man, the period in which it is set (the fifties), the various historical information about war, McCarthyism, the American racial issue, fear and suspicion in the bourgeoisie at the dawn of the Cold War, the geographical setting and the landscape and atmospheric descriptions of a city often shrouded in mist, S. Francisco. And then, the character of Buzz, perhaps the best, the most real, the most credible. And finally, the first chapter. Which enchants you and fascinates you. Incisive. Evocative. Bello. I negative sides, or rather, the reasons why "The story of a wedding" has not really satisfied me are the following. First of all, I found it oppressive. It emanates negative feelings. It is claustrophobic. This can also be wanted, is part of the characterization of the story, of course. But in this novel, I found that the characters were too stuck in this stagnant limbo. The protagonist, as well as narrated voice, is suspended, perhaps surrendered, and more than acting seems to be dragged by events: in front of a series of shocking demands, unimaginable realities, not struggle, does not ask for a single explanation and undaunted tries to keep the surface of the daily life of his family life smooth and bright, while horrendous monsters and eddies face the horizon. Is it wanted? Probably yes. Pearlie is a housewife from the 50s. She's not a heroine, she's a simple woman, whatever. She is a mother. A wife. She loves in a tenderly foolish way her husband, who has suffered in war, who has "an inverse heart", the aunts tell her, which must, therefore, be protected, at any cost, in spite of everything. But in the long run, this surrender, in the face of particularly strange events, in the face of what you gradually discover of the past life of the spouse, or when he was at war, a taboo subject that is never faced between the two, is too exaggerated , and it becomes not very credible. The figure of the husband, then, which should be fundamental, is just hinted, very fleeting, has no thickness, has no taste. But why? What does this man really want? Throughout the central part of the novel, the heaviest, at times boring, the plot remains blocked, while the characters, and the protagonist, in particular, get stuck on the pivotal question of the novel: it must be said in a marriage? Can one be silent for love? Or worse, for fear, for cowardice? The characters revolve around this point, which in reality is never dealt with. "The story of a marriage" is the story of false truths, of conventions, of marital silences that alienate, but which in reality agree with both ... but in the long run, this marriage, with its silences, with the phrases mentioned, with the strange behaviour of the male spouse becomes a marriage between strangers. Why be so attached, so dependent? "The object of our love exists only for fragments, a dozen if the story has just begun, a thousand if we married him, and with these fragments, our heart makes a whole person. What we create, replacing the gaps with the imagination, is the man we want. And the less we know it, the more we love it, of course. That's why we always remember with such happiness the first evening together when he was a stranger, and that happiness will come back only after he dies. "...Continua
Libro interessante, che ci pone di fronte ad una domanda fondamentale: quanto conosciamo delle persone che amiamo, dei loro pensieri, dei loro desideri, della loro storia?
Attraverso la narrazione di una donna di colore, americana, negli anni del dopoguerra, ci rendiamo conto di quanto poco conosciamo concretamente e quanto invece ci costruiamo un'immagine, una storia, all'interno della nostra mente.
Ottima la scrittura di Greer.