Book review: The Hours

The Hours- Michael Cunningham
The Hours tells the stories of three different women: Virginia Woolf, living in 1920s London suburbia; Laura Brown, a wife and mother struggling to cope with domesticated life in the late 40s; and Clarissa Vaughan, living in current New York and planning a party for her dying best friend. It explores the links between these women living such different lives, covering topics of sexuality and mental health.
Cunningham's writing style is beautiful. His use of prose is stunning, with poignant and striking sentences that seem to bore right down into the reader's soul. I was drawn to the characters, I could relate to them and ached for their missed opportunities. The links between the characters develop throughout the plot and, at one point, there is one of those sudden mind-blowing moments when everything fits together in your head and you gasp out loud. 
However, I found some of the symbolism to be quite clumsy and heavy-handed. The recurrent symbol of the yellow roses, which is in no way subtle and seems desperately obvious to the reader. I also had some confusion over characters who seem quite redundant- Mary, the butch friend of Clarissa's daughter, has several pages of focus, then disappears not to be mentioned again. I was left wondering what her role in the novel actually was.

Overall, though, I very much enjoyed the book. I'd like to read it again at one point now that the links have all been made apparent. 

No comments :

Post a Comment

I read all comments and appreciate every single one, even if I can't always reply. If you have a question or need a reply, feel free to tweet me @BeckyBedbug- I always reply to tweets!

Blog Design by Get Polished | Copyright Becky Craggs 2017