Top critical review
A good read
on January 7, 2014
The strength of this book is clearly created characters (compassionate Uncle Tinsley, the sensitivity of Liz who is easily victimized by cold, insensitive individuals), and the stable Aunt Al and Joe who provide a safety net for Bean, making it possible to stay in Byler at all). Even the girls' mother, who at first seems so weird, you come to see, has mental problems. Then there is the bigger than life Maddox "big fish in a small pond kind of guy" who eventually just goes too far, thereby destroying himself.
Point of view posed a bit of a problem for me. Twelve year old Bean seems too young to be offering all the insights into situations and events as they occur in the book.
Seems a lot to place on the shoulders of a 12 year old.
Is this believable? Yes and no(at times, a bit of a stretch).
I loved The Glass Castle and Half Broke Horses - straight to the heart.
Jeannette Walls knows young people can have a lot of character when called upon to live in an adult world without the proper supervision; a fine piece of insight for an author to draw from.