She merely represses everything and fails to stand up for herself when she needs to. In other words Goneril, the most treacherous Smiley uses King Lear as her framework for this novel. Within the first fifty pages, I was surprised that Smiley had drawn me into her story, and while it was still fairly mundane the family dog wasn't going to start talking on page 100, to my dismay , I found the voice of the narrator intriguing and wondered just how much of King Lear Smiley was going to be able to transpose to 1970s Iowa. And the daughters — rather than being based on the odious Goneril and Regan, are truly distorted beyond recognition. All the characters are well developed throughout the narrative. It's apparently a retelling of King Lear which since I've never read, I can say you don't have to be familiar with to appreciate A Thousand Acres. Perhaps it's because I related to the darkest parts of it all too well.
Ty comes to ask Ginny for a divorce, but she never explicitly agrees to it. Rose and Ginny are sued by their father who wants to reclaim his property and everyone makes it seem as if Rose and Ginny are to blame for everything bad that happened in the past and that they are to blame for not taking care of their father. The new owners of the farm battled to keep it afloat, increasing loans and sliding into a dangerous situation which could cost them the land. Harold is totally poisonous, as is Larry. A compelling read that I highly recommend.
I remember taking this from the shelf in Marple library, so I probably read it when it first came out. Life if already too short, and I am not sure whether there's going to be a library in the afterlife if there really is such a thing or not. Larry, the patriarch, the father, had his hands full with his farm and three daughters - Ginny, Rose and Caroline. He cuts Caroline out of the will, leaving Rose and Ginny in control of his hugely valuable farmland. The family learns that Larry has been in a car accident: he was driving while drunk, and hurt himself. It's Tragedy with a capital T. It seemed so strange and out of character that I was laughing at it rather than feeling any kind of suspense over it.
Reading Dunbar, the latest Shakespearean retelling of the King Lear story, made me want to revisit this old favourite. On the other, it was a negative feeling and the topic - incestuous child molestation - gave me the creeps because, unfortunately, that sort of thing does happen. This book is an excellent example of why everyone should leave psychological novels to the Russians and Henry James. In 2001, Smiley was elected a member of The American Academy of Arts and Letters. But what if the land, the roots themselves are no good? Her greatest gift as a writer is her ability to expose the secrets of the heart, the pivotal subtleties of feeling on which lives spin.
This was more like closing up shop, or, say, having a big garage sale, where you look at everything you've bought in your life, and you remember how much it meant to you, and now you just tag it for a quarter and watch 'em carry it off, and you don't care. Of course, movie adaptations inevitably entail some simplification, but screenwriter , a New Zealander who also wrote three of 's movies, all but exorcises the spirit of the novel. When I first started this book I thought it was going to be this family drama involving the daughters eventually understand their hard father and the father mellowing out and learning to show some kind of affection towards his daughters. A man of harsh sensibilities, he carves Caroline out of the deal because she has the nerve to be less than enthusiastic about her father's generosity. Meanwhile, Ty discovers that Ginny had a miscarriage that she hid from him, and a distance grows between them. Days later, the family lawyer approaches Ginny and informs her Larry, with the help of Caroline, is suing both her and Rose for the farm.
The first couple of chapters drew me in because the main character fails to conceive a child and that's an area of life that I know a lot about. Because the farm was profiting and had paid its debt off two days early, Ginny and Rose win the suit. Although, really, I should know better by now. It is a detailed account of life on an American farm. Having not read 'King Lear' in a while, I cannot say if everything was borrowed stolen from Shakespeare but in reading the synopsis of the play, Smiley borrowed most elements without abandon only changing the names and setting.
Ginny and Rose take turns cooking meals for their aging father. You could handle him better. Over the course of the next few days, Larry grows extremely erratic; while he was always an angry man, his temper is even more difficult to maintain. I'm so disappointed I feel like I'm never going to find a good dramatic family storyline that doesn't include incest and so much much more. In the end, she may have been the only character who did understand herself.
Ginny is married to Ty, a farmer, Rose is married to Pete, a musician from another state, and Caroline, the only one of the three daughters who attended college, is soon to be married to Frank. Caroline Cook, the youngest daughter, is kept out of the initial agreement. An accident with farm chemicals! Everyone has this terrible sense of inertia about them, like they're all stuck being miserable and can't do anything to change it. I had a third eye for Jess alone, a telescopic lens that detected every expression that crossed his face. The book also deals with legacy, an inheritance which encompasses more than just money and objects. The Elizabethan sisters are presumed to be incompetent to run anything, because they are female.
Really it seemed like a soap opera. These events are portrayed like a calamity of sudden violent weather conditions, bringing to the surface poisons in the soil capable of destroying the most scrupulously observed methods of tilling the land. However, this tale is about so much more than tending corn fields and hog raising. Instead, he disappears in the night while it starts raining. And so Smiley is left with charting the changes of an interior landscape for a first-person narrator ugh.
. She raises them and pays for their education but Ginny never remarries or finds another man to make her feel the way Jess used to. But, aside from that fact, there was little to keep me interested. In fact, the greatest maternal love Ginny experienced was from Mrs. If you don't know the plot, here is a very simplified version: Smiley presents us with a family that owns a 1000 acre farm in 1970's Iowa.