Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Cry Beloved Country

I read this for my online book club group's May meeting. All in all, I thought it was a decent read, but not spectacular. I kept comparing it to A Lesson Before Dying, which includes similar themes of racism, injustice, murder, and religion. Certainly, there are differences, for example, in Cry, Beloved Country the protagonist's son definitely killed a man, whereas in A Lesson Before Dying we don't know who killed the shop owner. Perhaps the change in Lesson's apathetic character drew me in and made me care more.

For some reason, this book felt more dated than Lesson, which is odd as both focus on an era past. Paton did write this during aparteid, while Gaines wrote post-Jim Crowe.

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