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Friday, April 13, 2012


This book will make you angry. Not because it's a terrible book with writing that will make you cringe, but because it's so good. 

The synopsis from Amazon: "THE SECRETS OF the past meet the shocks of the present.

Aslaug is an unusual young woman. Her mother has brought her up in near isolation, teaching her about plants and nature and language—but not about life. Especially not how she came to have her own life, and who her father might be.

When Aslaug’s mother dies unexpectedly, everything changes. For Aslaug is a suspect in her mother’s death. And the more her story unravels, the more questions unfold. About the nature of Aslaug’s birth. About what she should do next.

About whether divine miracles have truly happened. And whether, when all other explanations are impossible, they might still happen this very day.

Addictive, thought-provoking, and shocking, Madapple is a page-turning exploration of human nature and divine intervention—and of the darkest corners of the human soul."

I read Madapple last spring, but we just studied Conrad's Heart of Darkness in class and it made me think about this book again. They are so similar; they're both about ideology, although they don't exam it in quite the same way. And yes, Madapple will make you angry. Aslaug grows up isolated and she only knows what her mother has taught her, which isn't much. When her mother dies Aslaug is completely alone, with no knowledge about how people or the real world works. People take advantage of her naivety, she's used, and she's falsely accused because she just doesn't know how to handle the situation. And none of it is her fault. (Did I tell you this books would make you angry? Yeah. It will.)

Madapple tackles a lot of heavy issues. Our main character is so naive and child-like and we see these issues through her innocence, which makes them confusing and hazy. As they gradually become more clear you will become more angry - seriously, I can't emphasise the anger I felt while I read this book. It was entirely intentional by the author, which I admire, but at times I wasn't sure if I wanted to finish it. The most gut-wrenching part is that Aslaug is too naive to see how she's being manipulated and used, and there's no one there to defend her or help her.

The best way to describe this book is this; if you love studying literature and dissecting books, you'll be glad you read Madapple. I would highly encourage anyone who wants to major in English to read this. Or anyone who wants to be a writer - oh, your emotions will be so manipulated! There is so much talent in this work, it really stands out from the YA crowd.


1 comment:

  1. I saw this book awhile back and remember thinking that it looked interesting but I never read it. Thanks for the great review, I will see if my library still has it.
    Truly Bookish