March 7, 2014

Book Review: Middlesex

Ugh...I'm sorry that this is a week late.

From Good Reads: "I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day of January 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of 1974. . . My birth certificate lists my name as Calliope Helen Stephanides. My most recent driver's license...records my first name simply as Cal."

So begins the breathtaking story of Calliope Stephanides and three generations of the Greek-American Stephanides family who travel from a tiny village overlooking Mount Olympus in Asia Minor to Prohibition-era Detroit, witnessing its glory days as the Motor City, and the race riots of 1967, before they move out to the tree-lined streets of suburban Grosse Pointe, Michigan. To understand why Calliope is not like other girls, she has to uncover a guilty family secret and the astonishing genetic history that turns Callie into Cal, one of the most audacious and wondrous narrators in contemporary fiction. Lyrical and thrilling, Middlesex is an exhilarating reinvention of the American epic.

My Thoughts: I wanted to like this book, I really did. I had a lot of not nice things thrown my way at the mere mention of struggling through it but guess what, I didn't like it. It was, at times, a wonderful page turner, and at others, mind numbingly boring. The story was told from the first person omniscient...which didn't work for me. It would have been better had it been broken up and told by different narrators. I don't have much to say about this book really, I just didn't love it. I found it to be anticlimactic. You know from Page 1 that Callie is a hermaphrodite who later becomes Cal. The build up to that happening spans the course of 3 generations of family history until, it just kind of happens. She learns about her condition and chooses to live her life as a boy, there wasn't really much to it. I thought the book was well written, but I just had a hard time with it. 

Have you read Middlesex? What did you think?


  1. Hate that - bought many books that I really wanted to like!

  2. I would agree with mind-numbingly boring. I don't even remember anything specific about this book except that I didn't like it, so it obviously didn't interest me at all. Yet I always see it on lists of best books! So I'm glad I'm not the only reader who didn't like it. :)

  3. I never finished it...just couldn't get into it.


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