Where the River Ends

A few months ago, I asked some Facebook friends for book recommendations, and I vowed to read every book mentioned. One thing I love about doing the book challenge is that I get exposure to new authors. So, asking my friends for feedback seems like the next step in broadening my horizons. And one recommended author Charles Martin. I selected one of his books at random from the library, and in all honesty, I HATED this book. One star. I finished it only so I could write an accurate review.

I used to tell my students that hating a book was sometimes better than loving a book because you end up having so much more to say. For the first half of the book, I merely disliked it. The writing is atrocious and trite. The characters are stale and predictable. The plot was mediocre. Then came the sexist comments. Did you know that from birth, there are two things a woman wants: To be pursued and to know she is beautiful. Are you fucking kidding me? How about “to be strong,” “to be equal,” “to be treated fairly”? I would take every one of those things over the very shallow ideas of pursuit and beauty. This is where the book lost me. The hatred grew. By the end I was almost to the point of throwing the book across the room.

I’m giving the author the benefit of the doubt and assume he isn’t sexist, however, there are dozens of male writers who write strong female characters. The main female character in this is strong, but she is also selfish and reckless, putting her needs above the safety (and potential jail time) of her husband. I have no tolerance for this. The author’s twitter handle is “storiedcareer.” Seriously? Isn’t that self glorification? Barf.

I will not be reading another one of his books and I certainly suggest that you don’t either. I rolled my eyes at least every other page at how terrible, cliched, and downright sexist this book was.

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