The DNF Files: Middlesex- Jeffrey Eugenides

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I know I’ve complained about this book already, but here I am making it official.  I will not be finishing Middlesex.  In fact, I will even be paying my library 50 cents in overdue fees because I sort of forgot I’d had it sitting around so long.

What can I say about this book?  I don’t think I made it more than 50 pages in.  I should have read more reviews before I started it, I guess.  Many of the reviews over on Goodreads mentioned that it is a loooooong, slow start about family history/secrets/mistakes before Eugenides actually gets to the boy-raised-as-a girl, gender-fun part of the story.  I was so unimpressed by the family saga stuff, though, that I did not want to slog through another 400 pages of it.  Also, I might mention that incest is big in this book.  I didn’t realize how uncomfortable that would make me, but it was disgusting to read about the growing attraction between a brother and sister.  I guess that family sagas like this are just not my thing.

Sad to say (since so many people I respect have enjoyed him), I don’t think Eugenides is my cup of tea.  The Virgin Suicides was decent, but not near as intriguing or beautiful as I’d been led to believe.  I am left in total confusion here as to why people are so into this guy’s writing.

Clearly, if I can’t finish the book, I can’t recommend it.  Read at your own peril/pleasure.

When do you give up on a book?  What helps you decide to put a book down or to plow through it?

2 thoughts on “The DNF Files: Middlesex- Jeffrey Eugenides

  1. I agree “Middlesex” was difficult to push through. I pushed through and can see why it won so many awards, because a lot of the book was based on facts, but I didn’t know how I really felt about it after. It’s a lot! I give up on a book when half way and still confused or disconnected!

  2. I think I usually give up on books pretty early on if I can’t get into them. I figure I did my time in school, reading things for their literary merit, now I should be able to read what actually makes me happy. Sometimes literary merit makes me happy, but Eugenides’s style didn’t!

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