The Lacuna: A Novel (P.S.)
by Barbara Kingsolver
Paperback- $14.55

New York Times Bestseller

National Bestseller: Washington Post, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, San ...

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  "The Lacuna" by jendorf10 (see profile) 02/18/10

An interesting view of the life of a young man raised in Mexico by his single mother during the 1930's and 1940's. We enjoyed the way the story was put together with journal entries and how the characters were from history. There were many layers and our group had a great discussion.

  "The Lacuna" by merrybee (see profile) 03/26/10

Having a historian and an artist in our midst makes these historical novels even more intriquing! The Lacuna brings characters to life that we've read about in history and creates fictional characters that we grow to care about. The span of time and place is marvelous, and the writing is Kingsolver at her best!

  "The Lacuna" by vpowersbarrett (see profile) 09/14/10

A beautifully written book that will appeal to lovers of American and Mexican history as well as people interested in art and political movements of the 20th century. The story will prompt discussions of character as well as how people are swept up in events larger than themselves.

  "Boring, boring, boring." by tripleword (see profile) 09/15/10

I kept waiting for this book to improve as I have liked other books by Barbara Kingsolver, but this book just never caught my interest. The writing was slow and repetitive. A very boring book.

  "The Lacuna" by JanLBy (see profile) 09/17/10

I found the book to be a "slow read." The historical aspect was informative and interesting, but I found the central character to be unsympathetic (up until the end). As usual, Kingsolver used vast descriptive passages which did give the reader a sense of time and space.

  "Didn't finish it" by jbracey (see profile) 09/29/10

Very slow and boreing.

  "The Lacuna" by flowermama (see profile) 10/16/10

The author writes very descriptively, and I loved POISONWOOD BIBLE, but this book was just LLOONNGGGGGG. Most of my book club didn't finish it.

  "A Different Barbara" by cat6405 (see profile) 11/07/10

I love reading Barbara Kingsolver's books; I think Poisonwood Bible is a classic.
This book started so slowly! I started it when it first came out, and then I took it back to the library. I tried again when my book club picked it. It took me a long time to read, but the final fourth, where the protagonist deals with the McCarthy trials is certainly worth the read. I certainly connected with Shephard, the protagonist, which makes me recommend this book.

  "The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver" by Ruthyless (see profile) 11/07/10

I found the book a bit too drawn out for my taste. However, it brings up some interesting points to consider. One being, how choices or "one mistake" can change the course of history or one person's life.

  "The LaCuna" by kindlfif2 (see profile) 11/08/10

The main character was brave and well developed. The story followed his entire life. The political characters and some of the artistic characters were actually real. A BIG book but worth the read for people who enjoy historical fiction.

  "Lacuna" by tgarland (see profile) 01/08/11

I read it because I am an admirer of the artists. The book was interesting in its own right.

  "The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver" by csheehan (see profile) 01/21/11

  "The Lacuna" by lauriejacobs (see profile) 03/01/11

May be difficult for some to "get into," but worth the effort.

  "The Lacuna" by monkeymelen (see profile) 03/01/11

  "The space between truth and what we THINK is true" by FTessa (see profile) 04/10/12

I had a difficult time with this novel. I did not like Kingsolver’s voice as narrator at the outset, which made my mind wander as I “listened.” That really has little to do with the novel, except that it is part of the reason I don’t give it that final 5th star, because, ultimately, I loved this book.

Kingsolver tells the story of William Harrison Shepherd, a young man caught in the gaps (the lacunae) between two countries, two parents, two cultures, two lives (public and private). The novel unfolds as a series of diary entries, letters, and newspaper clippings, spanning the period from 1929 to 1954. Never quite at ease with his place in the world, Shepherd is an astute observer, who carefully considers what he witnesses and forms his own opinions. But he is not a man of action; he goes along for the ride, letting history unfold around him and never quite understanding how it has derailed his meager hopes. When he fails to play the media’s game, he finds himself the object of increasingly outlandish stories; and, eventually, accusations taken as truths will destroy him. The lacuna that is most important here is the space between truth and a falsehood perceived as truth.

I love how Kingsolver’s luscious writing paints the landscape and time period. I could just about taste the sugary pan dulce or savory chalupas; was nearly deafened by the howler monkeys, the din of the marketplace or the shouts of demonstrators and riot police; I relished in the colors of the tropics and felt subdued by the grey of a mountain winter.

I listened to the audio book, narrated by Kingsolver. I did eventually grow to appreciate the author’s narration, though I really had a difficult time with her performance at the outset. I thought she was too “careful” with her words; it lacked emotion and “life.” But she really shone, in my opinion, when she voiced Frida Kahlo and, especially later in the novel, Violet Brown. I think I am going to have to read this one again – this time in a text format.

  "The Lacuna" by Momdeprovence (see profile) 06/28/12

  "The Lacuna" by smtanz (see profile) 09/03/15

PROS: ALL of the characters! Especially Harrison! The words of Harrison were brilliant. Ms. Kingsolver is a remarkable author. I learned so much about the history of that time.
CONS:Difficult to get into. Many of our members gave up.

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