Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Hunger - Elise Blackwell
This book was interesting. I was only 133 pages but was not an easy read. I have been trying to pick shorter novels lately because I really want to finish my 100 Book Challenge, but this one turned out to be more than I bargined for. Hunger is set in Leningrad in 1941 when the Nazi's surrounded the city, literally leaving hundreds of thousands of people to die of starvation. The novel is narrated by an elderly man who now survived the seige and now lives in America. He worked as a botanist and ended up eating small bits of the seeds that he was supposed to be preserving. We see what people will do (and what they won't do) to survive.
I felt this novel had a lot to do with his relationship with his wife and how after 50 years he was still feeling guilt about his affairs and how he would have given it all up for one more hour with her. It was interesting, and sad and hard to read sometimes. I am lucky that I never had to experience hunger and do not know what I would do to survive. It was a powerful book and I am glad I read it.