Title: The Appetites of Girls (Audiobook)
Author: Pamela Moses
My Rating: ♥♥1/2
Francesca, Ruth, Opal and Setsu. These four girls couldn’t really be any more different from each other, yet they are thrown together as suite mates in their first year of university at Brown. The book tells each of their stories from childhood through to the present time, in particular weaving in each of their relationships with their mothers and with food.
And, well, it was interesting enough. I faithfully listened to the whole audiobook from start to finish, and I think I did a pretty good job of paying attention. But somehow for me there was some magic moment or twist or something that was missing from the story. Aside from having their lives collide as roommates in university, there really isn’t anything that interesting that threads these women together. They all have very distinct and different upbringings and lives. And I suppose that’s not a bad thing. It’s just that I was waiting for something to happen and it never really did.
I really didn’t want to give this book a half rating. I’m usually not so on the fence about how many hearts to rate the books I read. But with this one…meh. Each woman’s story was interesting enough in itself, but somehow they didn’t all intertwine the way I might have liked them to. So while I didn’t dislike the book as such, I felt like a three star rating would have been a bit too much for this one.
Now, I like listening to audiobooks, and I usually do it while I’m doing something else that doesn’t require much brain work, like housework or walking somewhere. I listened to The Appetites of Girls over about a one-month period in little chunks here and there. So I acknowledge that that might have had some influence on how I found all of the stories to be a little disjointed. My mind has a tendency to wander at times while I’m listening to something. Sometimes I’ll rewind back to where I last remember having paid attention, but with this book I didn’t really feel like I need to. So maybe that’s why something was just missing for me.
That said, I did find that I could relate to something in each woman’s life. Setsu has her passion for violin, and although I was never such a serious musician, I can understand where she is coming from with that. Francesca with her bingeing and Ruth with her comfort food reminded of my own tendencies to eat when I’m not necessarily responding to a physiological queue. And Opal…well, she was the character who was probably least like me, but still I loved her ostentatiously glamorous upbringing.
I won’t be the first to go out and recommend this book to everyone, but it’d be pretty good for a quick summer read.