Title- The Bell Jar.
Author- Sylvia Plath.
Publish date- 1981, 2006.
Publisher- Harper Perennial Modern Classics.
(A Brief) Synopsis:
It's not a synopsis, I know, but I THOUGHT THIS WAS IT.
What I thought:
You know how there are some books you hear about and you're sure they'll be for you, maybe not incredibly so, but they'll hit at something within you and that'll be it. The two of you feel almost destined to connect- although I shouldn't really speak for the book.
I'm thinking I should be wary of the books I think of in this way, after my experience with E. E. Cummings (I'll never recover) and The Bell Jar. And in the same month, too!
I had owned a (really gorgeous) copy of The Bell Jar for around two years and to actively get through my physical tbr I've decided to take a photo of three books each month and instagram them, because you can't lie on the 'gram (lies), and it worked so well.
Only I loathed two out of the three books.
About twenty minutes after starting and feeling like the pace of the story was easy enough to get used to, I updated my goodreads and saw someone reference TBJ, in a way, as the female version of The Catcher in the Rye, which just happens to be my second most hated book ever.
So that got me a little concerned.
And while I wouldn't call it the female "version", I would say the two and their respective characters are very similar. Esther Greenberg moseyed along in a disengaged- and disengaging- way, thinking about death and comitting suicide a lot and really just being "there" but not. Which I suppose is the whole point. But it only frustrated me, left me feeling like I was waiting and waiting for something more, only for that more to never come.
It is quite poignent, how Esther grows depressed, because it showed very clearly that there isn't always a reaosn, that it can just be life, even when life is giving you so much. I recognised a lot of elements of genuity in the descriptions and progress of Esther's depression and that struck me, but what also struck me was how little, a lot of the time, Esther did for herself. Her safety or health or happiness or just because it was the right thing to do.
She left her friend, drunk and in an apartment with a man she'd just met, without saying a word, and when she came to her door, sick and crying, she let her fall asleep in the corridor in a pool of her own vomit.
She came close to being raped and I know the issue is not and never will be the fact you "could have" done something, it's not as if the victim is to blame, but I didn't know how she almost let it be, when she knew what was about to happen. Why she almost didn't struggle.
Rating: Oh nooo...
The Bell Jar and I may have been destined for each other, but if we were it wasn't so we could have a happy experience. Or future.