It’s been a year ago that I actually read this book by Joyce Carol Oates, the magnificent author and professor emeritis at Princeton. She is simply above and beyond as a writer, so anything she writes is worthy of attention and discussion.
This book, however, is not one of her finest, ‘though it is one of her most interesting in terms of deconstructionism and wild fantasy with regard to the JonBenet Ramsey true-life, unsolved murder mystery. Nobody could have come up with this novel rendering of the circumstances…or of such a portrait of the family and of the little girl’s brother.
Ms Oates does not, of course, ever say that the book is about the Ramsey tragedy or the family…but anyone who’s read the press or seen a television in the past 10 years would have to be clueless not to make the connection.
Did I like the book? Absolutely!!! I was horrified, I laughed….I even laughed inappropriately!!! I sniffled. I glared at the pages. I shook my head and huffed scornfully. I stopped and stared off into space, and I promptly sent the book to my very favorite co-gran/co-in-law, Tinker, who is also a JonBenet Ramsey mystery buff like I am/was.
You can absolutely never go wrong with a Joyce Carol Oates book. Her writing is flawless. Her story concepts never fail to challenge and sit you down in a comfy chair for hours. She is a storyteller extraordinaire, and she is a genius with all the nuances of characterization, place and time.
I can’t imagine you’ve never read an Oates novel before. If you haven’t…..please just keep it to yourself….. This might not be the place to start, but you could start with, “The Falls,” which is a kinder, gentler novel. For those of you who are Oates readers, you’ll enjoy this one for all sorts of strange reasons.
Your Bookish Dame