Friday, May 29, 2015

Book Review: Ruby

Living a tortured life can't be easy.  Discovering that it didn't have to be that way....unfathomable.  From being sold as a sex slave at an early age to becoming the town bum after returning from an extended stay in New York City, Ruby Bell sure had a rough life. 

Ruby by Cynthia Bond* is not for the weak at heart or stomach really.  This book was difficult to read.  Many of the acts described in great detail were not just repulsive, but also despicable.  Set in the small East Texas town of Liberty, it spans the lifetime of Ruby Bell and Ephram Jennings. The content of the book might have been a tad more comprehensible if the structure had been written more orderly.  Ruby is broken down into three sections with the last one being far and away the best.  The first section begins in present day (1960's), but quickly takes us back to the childhood days of Ruby and Ephram.  Many clues are given here to what type of life lies ahead of these two youngsters.  But the text jumps back and forth from past to present until finally they meet again after a couple decades apart.  The second section follows Ruby's escape from and eventual return to Liberty.  It paints a picture of her life much differently than described anywhere else.  She is a tortured soul, but being away seems to be working to her advantage at least for awhile.  It's not entirely clear the reason why she stays in Liberty after her return, but the book finally begins to introduce the idea of hope through Ephram's pure motives with her.  I found the final section to be the most interesting.  While it still flip flopped between current day and the past, much of the rich family histories of both Ruby and Ephram are revealed.  This was the only time in which I felt that I didn't want to put the book down.  Much of the ending is steeped in redemption and hope for the future.  It would have been nice for the ending to provide a bit more closure, but it was fitting to the story told.

Overall, I wouldn't really recommend this book to very many people.  There are a multitude of quite serious topics covered and many of them are sensitive and difficult to digest.  I drug out reading this book for nearly three months because I found it incredibly hard to read much of it in any one sitting.  I appreciate the final product and did find various parts intriguing and thought-provoking, but ultimately it proved to just be a tough read emotionally.

Andrea :)

*I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my review. For more info about how to purchase a book, click here.  And for additional information about the author, click here.

1 comment:

  1. I totally agree. This was a difficult book to read, not only for the subject matter but the way it was written. Not my favorite, but I could appreciate the story.