Mother of Pearl

by Melinda Haynes | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 0743431030 Global Overview for this book
Registered by narfinmagic of Freehold, New Jersey USA on 12/30/2003
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This book is in the wild! This Book is Currently in the Wild!
7 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by narfinmagic from Freehold, New Jersey USA on Tuesday, December 30, 2003
From the Cover:

Capturing all the rueful irony and radical ambivalence of small-town Mississippi in the late 1950's, Melinda Haynes' celebrated novel is a wholly unforgettable exploration of family, identity and redemption. Mother of Pearl revolves around twenty eight year old Evan Grade, a black man who grew up an orphan, and valuable Korner, the fifteen year old white daughter of the town whore and an unknown father. Both are passionately determined to discover the precious things neither experienced as children: human connection, enduring committment, and, above all, unconditional love. A startling accomplished mixture of beauty, mystery, and tragedy, Mother of Pearl marks the debut of an extraordinary literary talent.

I plan to make a bookring out of this book before I read it.

Journal Entry 2 by narfinmagic from Freehold, New Jersey USA on Tuesday, December 30, 2003
This is the order of this bookring: Please PM the person listed after you on the list (for their address) when you are ready to send it on.

1. marcinyc, New Jersey
2. MommyMace, Washington
3. Czersk, Minnesota
4. pashmack, Florida
5. raquelsita, Wisconsin
6. beautyredefined, Wisconsin
7. and back to me in Freehold, NJ. Arrived back home on 8/11/04.


Journal Entry 3 by MarciNYC from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA on Sunday, January 25, 2004
The premise of this book sounded interesting, however, it failed my "50 page test" and I was generous and gave it nearly 100 pages before I gave up. I will PM the next person on the list and send it on to them when I get a response. Hopefully others will enjoy it - it just wasn't the book for me. Thanks for letting me have a chance at it though!

Journal Entry 4 by MommyMace from Hopkinton, Massachusetts USA on Wednesday, February 04, 2004
Received today from MarciNYC as part of narfinmagic's bookring. This is my first bookring. I am packing to go on a trip tomorrow AM -- it couldn't have arrived at a better time! Have to finish my current book, then I will get started on it right away.

Journal Entry 5 by MommyMace from Hopkinton, Massachusetts USA on Sunday, February 22, 2004
I found this book to be quite difficult to read. Although Melinda Haynes prose is wonderful, I found her writing style hard to follow sometimes. I almost abandoned it at several points, but I stuck with it,l and am quite glad I did. The story comes together well. A nice story of human connection , and love.


Journal Entry 6 by MommyMace from Hopkinton, Massachusetts USA on Monday, February 23, 2004
The book is on its way to Czersk in Minnesota via Media Mail. I am STILL thinking about the book!!

Journal Entry 7 by Czersk from Roscoe, Minnesota USA on Monday, March 01, 2004
Just came in the mail from Mommy Mace.

Journal Entry 8 by Czersk from Roscoe, Minnesota USA on Monday, March 22, 2004
I really liked this book. Once I got into it, there was no putting it down. Unfortunately it was right when I was supposed to be taking a trig test or watching a presentation of the legend of Sundiata when the book decided to get REALLY good. I am a sly character, though, and I managed to sneak my book in.

This was a unique book. It had a sort of Flowers in the Attic meets To Kill A Mockingbird type of theme about it that worked. I must say the end wasn't at all to my choosing. I think it was dragged out a bit longer than what it should of been, but other than that, it was a good book. Thanks narfinmagic for starting it, and mommymace for sending it to me.

Off to pashmack in Florida.

Journal Entry 9 by Czersk from Roscoe, Minnesota USA on Wednesday, March 24, 2004
Mailed yesterday. Off to Florida.

Journal Entry 10 by pashmack from Lake Worth, Florida USA on Saturday, March 27, 2004
Arrived safe and sound in today's mail. I'll get started on it tonight, but it may take awhile, as I have 3 other bookring books here. Thank you!

Journal Entry 11 by pashmack from Lake Worth, Florida USA on Monday, May 17, 2004
Excellent. Very emotionally absorbing. Beautifully written, with unforgettable characters- Valuable, Even, Joody, Canaan... I loved it. Thank you, narfinmagic, for sharing another great book.

On to raquelsita in tomorrow's mail.

Journal Entry 12 by raquelsita from Camarillo, California USA on Monday, May 24, 2004
Came in the mail today. I'll get started on it tonight. It shouldn't take me too long to read it and send it on.

Journal Entry 13 by raquelsita from Camarillo, California USA on Saturday, June 05, 2004
Honestly, I did not enjoy this book at all. I found the writing style hard to follow and often had to go back and reread a section. I also thought there were just too many characters and story lines going on and intertwining. I think it would have been better to just concentrate on a few of the main characters. I would have given up in the beginning, but about 100 pages in I thought it got interesting, but then it got pretty boring again. By the end I was just reading so I could get it done.

I will be sending this on to the next reader on Monday.

Journal Entry 14 by beautyredefined from Washington, District of Columbia USA on Saturday, June 19, 2004
Just received this. I'm finishing up a book right now, and will get to this soon!

Journal Entry 15 by beautyredefined from Washington, District of Columbia USA on Tuesday, August 03, 2004
This book really took awhile to get used to. I had to start it a few times before I could even get past the first few pages. The prose is so thick and metaphorical it requires more effort than I was expecting for a summer novel. At first, I also found the names rather cheesy - Even Grade, Valuable Korner? I mean, really.

Once I started to get into the actual story I began to enjoy it however. The characters start to really show their personalities and you start to care for them all - Canaan's stubborn grumpiness, Valuable's tenacity, Joody's quirks. The author really creates quite the set of characters, and while they're not wholly believable, there are enough pieces of reality to let you believe.

I kept going back and forth in my feelings about the book.
Warning! Some spoilers inside!

The book seemed to grow in its intensity up until the flood. At that point it was quite exciting and I kept wanting to read more. However, the flood for me seemed like an ending to the book. There was the resolution of the drought being over, and the sense that everyone was just beginning their new lives together. Joleb had been found and rescued, and all seemed well. With Val's pregnancy in the background during that time, I found myself wondering why there was so much left in the book. Here is where it became more difficult to read again. The general flow of the book seemed to halt in its tracks.

I had really enjoyed seeing the relationship between Jackson and Val grow and evolve, and was rather disappointed when Jackson left. When he doesn't show up until the end of book again, I'm almost mad that he did come back. All the other characters were developed so much more fully by that time, Jackson seemed like an afterthought. He'd been gone too long for me to care too much about him as a character.


While I didn't really think so while reading the book, thinking back on it now there are quite a few storylines and characters. While interestingly intertwined, it's difficult to describe even a basic plot for the book, which means that it's probably too complicated. Also, while the author tries to be metaphorical, the book really didn't make me stop and ponder the deeper meanings of her text or of life. I think I just wasn't willing to put that much effort into a novel during the summer. A literature class would probably have a very different time with it and get more out of it.

This is a good book with an interesting story, but it's probably a great book if you are willing to spend the time and effort into unraveling it's vast, deep meanings. I think they must be in there somewhere.

I'm sending this home tomorrow!

Journal Entry 16 by narfinmagic from Freehold, New Jersey USA on Wednesday, August 11, 2004
Yahoo! Another bookring made its way back home.
Since I have not yet read this one, it's going back onto Mount TBR. With the mixed reviews on this book, I am very curious to read it for myself now. Thanks everyone for keeping this book moving and making another ring successful!

Journal Entry 17 by narfinmagic from Freehold, New Jersey USA on Monday, December 27, 2004
I read about 60 pages of this book and just could not get into it. I'm planning to release this book soon.

Journal Entry 18 by narfinmagic at Post Office on Rt. 537 nr Food Town in Freehold, New Jersey USA on Monday, December 27, 2004
Released on Monday, December 27, 2004 at about 1:00:00 PM BX time (GMT-06:00) Central Time (US & Canada) at Post Office on Rt. 537 near Food Town in Freehold, New Jersey USA.

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