Book review

30 Day Book Challenge – A Book that Made You Cry

Day 14 – A Book that Made You Cry

The Potato Factory – Bryce Courtenay

Cry? How about bawl my eyes out? Because that is what I did when I read this book released in 1995. And I really can’t remember much about why?  It was some years back and I know that it affected me to the point where I would recall it for days, nay, weeks later, thinking, “It is just not FAIR” – such was the effect of Bryce Courtenay’s writing.

Perhaps it is the story of a convict consigned to the colonies, or that of a female trying to make her way, or a female with a gift for mathematics. Such an  unlikely character, I think. There has been some criticism of this novel being anti-semitic, and Bryce Courtenay, despite living most of his adult life in Australia, did grow up in Apartheid South Africa, however, I did not notice any anti-jewish overtones in the book.

This is apparently the first of three books in a series, but the pervasive and sad thoughts that lingered with this book meant that I have not ever felt emotionally strong enough to read them.

As I can’t remember too much about the content of the book, other than the basic plot line of common thief makes good – an Australian version of Oliver Twist), I will also nominate another book: Elisabeth’s Daughter by Marianne Fredriksson, an author who I mentioned previously in this challenge. Elisabeth’s Daughter is a full on tear-jerker about a relationship between a damaged mother, and her adult daughter and how personalities can sometimes be shaped by our past experiences. A young girl from a dysfunctional family,  who is frightened of commitment in relationships, falls pregnant and decides to keep the baby. Her partner, however, believes he is being deliberately trapped by her and resorts to violence against her, as his communication device. Memories of her own childhood and regular abuse of her mother come flooding back to Katrina, and confused, she goes to her Mother to talk things through.

The Author wonders whether violence can be inherited by the Victim as well as the Perpetrator and explores the very deep bonds that occur between mother and daughter.

Keep your Kleenex handy!

DAY 15. – A character who you can relate to the most.
DAY 16. – Most thought-provoking book.
DAY 17. – Author I wish people would read more.
DAY 18. – A book you wish you could live in.
DAY 19. – A favourite author.
DAY 20. – Favorite childhood book.
DAY 21. – Book you tell people you’ve read, but haven’t (or haven’t
actually finished).
DAY 22. – Least favourite plot device employed by way too many books you actually
enjoyed otherwise.
DAY 23. – Best book you’ve read in the last 12 months.
DAY 24. – Book you’re most embarrassed to say you like/liked.
DAY 25. – The most surprising plot twist or ending.
DAY 26. – Book that makes you laugh out loud.
DAY 27. – Book that has been on your “to read” list the longest.
DAY 28. – Favorite quote from a book.
DAY 29. – A book you hated.
DAY 30. – Book you couldn’t put down.

Something to Ponder About

Other challengers:



3 thoughts on “30 Day Book Challenge – A Book that Made You Cry”

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