This was the book group book for December and January, Cristy’s pick. I must say, I really enjoyed the journey that reading this novel took me on, and yes- it was quite a journey (700 pages). I was really looking forward to a good discussion but apparently no other book group members took ‘hibernating’ for the month of January with a stack of books and movies as seriously as I did.
The story behind the book: the author, Sena Jeter Naslund takes a small reference to Captain Ahab’s young wife from Herman Melville’s ”Moby-Dick” and creates an amazing woman, Una Spencer and her story. Una was a inspiring character, my kind of gal- strong, independent, free spirited and open minded.
But, once again, in my backwards way of doing things, I wish I had read Moby Dick first. Hopefully, I can get around to it someday. Unfortunately, I really don’t know anything about Moby Dick or Herman Melville. But I just found this interesting little fact when reading a review of the book. Apparently, Melville could barely tolerate the thought of women reading his books. Of ”Moby-Dick” he wrote to a female acquaintance, ”Don’t you buy it — don’t you read it when it does come out, because it is by no means a sort of book for you.” Isn’t it interesting that from less than a paragraphs reference to a wife in his book such an epic novel would come forth… and all about a woman? (and now I really want to read Moby Dick.)
Here is summing it all up from the Times review: “This book insists on happiness, sometimes to the exclusion of even the most generous reading of history. But why not? Men have got rich from their big harpoons and mythic beasts and improbable heroics. Don’t women deserve their own fantastic voyages? ” Amen to that ladies… and gentlemen.
Book Group February: The Mole People by Jennifer Toth