It is a blue wall that I punched. That's one of the few compliments I can give this book. If that's the way Essbaum thinks that psychotherapy is conducted, then anyone could be a psychotherapist without even any training or education. Reading the book I thought about this advise and how it might have changed Anna's destiny. She observed everything around her but never participated in the new life she and Bruno created for their nuclear family of five. Yeah yeah, we get it.
You can study most anything at the Migros Klubschule: cooking, sewing, knitting, drawing, singing. Hausfrau is a perfect vehicle for book discussion. Do characters have to justify their personalities? You can feel the crazing of the air. The soul is made of gold and darkness, Anna. It changed my life and attitude with the speed of lightning.
But nothing drew me in. While the main character, Anna, has moved away from the states to Switzerland to get married? In the early 21st century? Adulterous sex in Europe by an unlikable expat, playing the role of mother and wife at home. You may disagree, but I just don't think woman go for this kind of fucking sorry, but that's what it is , because they're miserable. No one talks like this. The strong ones stand out. This Anna, on the surface, appears to have it all: the successful husband, three children, a beautiful home, the trappings of wealth.
Another cool thing: I got to be in the past and the present on the same page, without ever losing my place. Several of their eloquent reviews swayed me toward giving it a try, anyway, despite my misgivings. Whether she succeeds at changing or not is essentially what kept me reading. When will you tell me everything, Anna? She confused tense with mood and relied too often on the passive voice. She did have feelings for her kids and Stephen, and yet her feelings seemed pretty superficial. That blood, in fact can boil.
And Anna Karenina, arguably the more interesting woman, seeks solace from her cold, emotionless husband through her affair with the far more dashing Vronsky. A review of this book would be incomplete without mentioning that despite the conservativeness implied by its title, Hausfrau is a very sexually charged story. I was never involved in the story. Unfortunately, the characterization is cardboard, and as such, makes it hard to connect with anyone. That's one of the few compliments I can give this book.
I kind of like the idea of exploring a woman who has kind of floated into being this way, and only at a late age grabbed on to a narrative that seems to make sense to her situation, as outdated as it is. Oh, and Essbaum describes a black person this way. And burn and burn and burn. If you'd like to discuss the book without dodging spoilers, we're talking about it in.
She felt unneeded, unimportant, incompetent and, well useless. If Anna suspected there was more to her pathology, then that was a secret she kept very close. The title could have been 'The Glass Castle'. That horrid little story by Alice Munro: To Reach Japan. But there is much more here that engaged my mind and emotions. If you asked me why she was having affairs, I'd say it was because she was desperately trying to feel something.
The kind of overconfident ending that presupposes its audience will be overly smitten with it. The teacher turns toward me. I think I was supposed to find that touchingly naïve. But it was too formatically correct.
And once her husband knows the truth, doesn't that present her with freedom rather than an ending? How are you touching today? She just simply is this way. Also, I love being inside a characters head, and thoughts, also, great here. The erotic extravaganza became stale and bland. Hoping to find something to keep her afloat, Anna reaches out to a Jungian therapist, starts taking German lessons and begins a series of extramarital affairs as her life quickly falls apart. She simply forced the people around her to take care of her. She has no ambitions for a career, no hobbies, no real friends, no one she can really talk with.