Just wanted to thank you for hosting another memorable book club meeting, and for serving such a delicious, creative meal. I wanted to let you know that I finished the book while on the airplane and it helped me push on, knowing that Zou Lei was not going to die. I did have to skim the entire marathon chapter in which she walks in plastic sandals/barefoot for 30 miles. I rather liked the ending as I believe that the world is a better place without the likes of Jimmy and I appreciated that Skinner took control of his own destiny, even if only for a few minutes, to put himself out of his misery. I don’t believe he could ever have recovered from the depths to which he had fallen- but that’s not my field of expertise. The ending was a bit neat for Zou Lei- but then again she deserved it and so did we!!
Thanks Jane, for bringing the book to our attention – it’s always good to push the boundaries of our reading every once in awhile. I could literally feel the level of the characters exhaustion.
See you all at Bev’s.
And from Bev
After I have read a really good book it tends to stay with me for a long time. I still am thinking about this one. Thank you for choosing it Jane. Again good book, good discussion and amazing food.
And a very belated thank you from me! One week later and I still find myself thinking about the characters and their situation. I wonder just how many people- even here in Burlington, are living under the radar as undocumented immigrants, trying to hold a job and evade deportation.
I also don’t understand Jimmy and Zou Lei’s relationship. In my reading of the novel, Jimmy and Zou Lei had a palpable sense of need for each other – but love? They were two comrades (I use this term purposefully) striking out in hostile territory, trying to survive. This was a gloomy read but an important one nonetheless. As I said before, how lucky am I? I will never complain about Manulife again.
Jane thanks for your hospitality and for taking the trouble to make us an authentic meal. It certainly added to the pleasure of being together and discussing this “sledgehammer to the American dream”