Sunday, 11 October 2009

Sexing the Cherry - Abandoned Book



It takes a lot for me to abandon a book. I will struggle through as much as possible and try to get to the end, just in case it improves along the way.

I managed to get half way through Sexing The Cherry by Jeanette Winterson and then I was just too disgusted to read anymore.

This book is really degrading to men. This book includes graphic descriptions of necrophilia after two men are brutally murdered and also forced bestiality. I was really upset and disgusted by this book.

It gives the impression that Jeanette Winterson has a real dislike of men. Does she really hate them that much, that she has to make them such pitiful creatures. I could see no reason why these scenes were included and how they benefitted the story.

I could not see how this book made the '1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die' list.

I know a lot of people have really enjoyed this book, but I found it very confusing and I felt lost within it. Perhaps my attention was drawn more to these degrading scenes and other people were clever and skimmed over them. However, for me, it was too much.

I had really hoped to enjoy this book as I did like her most famous book 'Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit'. However, the book flicked between reality and magical realism without marking where one began and the other one ended.

If you have read this book, please can you explain to me why you like it. I hate to be beaten by any book and I hate to dwell on scenes that I found abusive. There is obviously something appealing within the pages of this book, that I appear to have missed.

22 comments:

  1. I've not read it and from your description it doesn't appeal either.

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  2. Wow, I didn't expect this! Never read this book, I guess I shouldn't either! :)

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  3. I don't think this book is something I'd read. It takes a lot for me to abandon a book too.

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  4. While I think it's great you want to hear from others about what you think you might have missed in this book, I don't think you should doubt your own reactions to the book either. I haven't read it, but I can see me having the same reaction as you. Brutality can have a place in a book, but it's gratuitous use isn't something I can stomach well either. Don't beat yourself up for abandoning a book, Vivienne! Just look forward to the next one.

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  5. Like you Viv, I rarely abandon a book. I haven't read this one and I doubt whether I ever will but I say you've given it more than a fighting chance and now you should just chalk this one up as "different strokes for different folks."

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  6. You did better them me Vivienne, I'm afraid I didn't even get as far as half way and I'm also very stubbborn as far as reading a book to the end is concerned - how I hate to admit defeat.

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  7. Oh dear. :/ From the things I've read about the book, it didn't sound up my alley, but that's worse than I imagined!!! I'm glad you posted about why you abandoned it.

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  8. Thanks for your honest review, Vivienne! I have heard of this book, but I don’t want to read it, now that I know what it is about.

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  9. I have never read her but know many who have and love her. I was never very interested in any of her books and she stopped to sign stock at a bookstore i was working at many years ago and I was not impressed with her either. She was very aloof and some what arrogant. Not that that is fair to judge her books on how she acts BUT it does taint things for me!
    Oh well.

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  10. Viv, I got through your third paragraph before just saying EWW and skimming the rest. And if I have to skim the REVIEW, then you KNOW I wouldn't like the book! Ugh. I wasn't planning on reading this one anyway, but that was just awful. Thanks for posting this. I love abandoned posts.

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  11. Ergh. I can put up with reading about a lot of heavy stuff but necrophilia and beastiality is a NO. Good on ya for getting as far as you did though. Think I'll be leaving this one out too.

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  12. I'm sorry this was a bad one for you, Vivienne. I've never heard of it and I have no desire to read it.

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  13. Sorry the book stunk so much for you. It doesn't seem like anything I would read myself. Hopefully the next book is much better.

    Vasilly

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  14. Viv, thanks for your honest thoughts on this book. I actually almost ordered it last month, but now it is off my wish list. too many good books out there to waste time on one we can't handle.

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  15. What?! Oh, those are some strange things in there. Might not be the book for me.
    I loved two of her other books

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  16. I totally understand. I read this last year (it being so short is pretty much only reason why I finished it) and there were definite parts that were disgusting. I can see how she is talented...I just don't like it that much.

    Something similar happened to me reading Slammerkin. I was so disgusted and had fifty pages left and had to quit. Blah. Just not worth it.

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  17. I've abandoned a few books over the years but I always feel bad about it lol :(

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  18. I hadnt heard of this one before, but I dont blame you for abandoning it. The necrophilia and bestiality would definitely gross me out.
    http://thebookworm07.blogspot.com/

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  19. Wow. That was completely unexpected. Do you know, I bought this at a charity shop last week. From your review, I'm a little sorry that I did. I had no idea what it was about until now and felt a little disgusted just reading your synopsis.

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  20. I read this book as part of my AS Level English Literature coursework and I can understand where you're coming from although I have to say that it is a work of fiction and so such is not to be taken as something that would really happen. The book itself deals with the depiction of women and the Hopi tribe's concept of time (where there is no past, present and future, but rather all time consisting as one). I do urge you to overlook these... uncomfortable passages as once you finish the book you are able to look back and realise the ingenuity of how Winterson incorperates techniques into the novel. To me it seems that you may have taken these references to be literal but I assure you the book is not as horrible as made out here, given that not very many of the pages are consisting of what you have critiqued.

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  21. I read this book as part of my AS Level English Literature coursework and I can understand where you're coming from although I have to say that it is a work of fiction and so such is not to be taken as something that would really happen. The book itself deals with the depiction of women and the Hopi tribe's concept of time (where there is no past, present and future, but rather all time consisting as one). I do urge you to overlook these... uncomfortable passages as once you finish the book you are able to look back and realise the ingenuity of how Winterson incorperates techniques into the novel. To me it seems that you may have taken these references to be literal but I assure you the book is not as horrible as made out here, given that not very many of the pages are consisting of what you have critiqued.

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