Discussion of "Walking with Elephants"

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How do you rate Walking with Elephants?

1 star - poor, recommend against reading it
0
No votes
2 stars - okay, fair
2
33%
3 stars - good, recommend it
2
33%
4 stars - excellent, amazing
2
33%
 
Total votes: 6

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Scott
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Discussion of "Walking with Elephants"

Post by Scott » 01 Dec 2011, 19:37

Please use this topic to discuss the December 2012 book of the month, Walking with Elephants by Karen Bell. If you have not finished the book yet, please wait to read and post in this topic because this topic will contain spoilers.

What do you think of the book? Do you recommend it? What do you like most about the book? What do you like least? Are there any quotes or passages from the book that you think are noteworthy?
"That virtue we appreciate is as much ours as another's. We see so much only as we possess." - Henry David Thoreau

"Non ignara mali miseris succurrere disco." Virgil, The Aeneid

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Seaelf63
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Post by Seaelf63 » 05 Dec 2011, 16:49

I liked this book once I hit midway through. It was difficult to get into because I would get frustrated with the thinking of the main character. I would find my self thinking "now why would she do that?!" After I finally got into the character, I was able to relate and enjoy the book. The ending was surprising and pretty good, although I could have done without the entire column that Suze writes at the end of the book. Not bad though, and I'm not disappointed about reading this book.

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Post by NancyJillThames » 12 Dec 2011, 16:39

I'm sure "Walking with Elephants" has an audience it appeals to, but sadly, I couldn't get into it. I don't know why I can read something like "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" and not mind the graphic details. Perhaps it's because I felt those details were necessary to the plot. But in "Walking with Elephants", I felt a little too exposed to baseness, both in the protagonist's home setting and conversations with certain work colleagues. The writing was good and I laughed at a few lines, but I couldn't get past the profanity. Just me.

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Schmunzelmonster
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Post by Schmunzelmonster » 15 Dec 2011, 17:15

To me the book was a quick and nice read. The story was not very inventive, but very well written. I would have liked to see Suze emancipate herself on purpose rather than by force and for her to get rid of all the stuff in her house that's not hers. I've been looking forward to a scene where she'll start to pick up all the woodwork and stuff and trash it, to free herself from the needs of other people, but it never came :-(
The book reminded me of how far we still have to go for equality. I am very blessed with a husband who irons, cleans and cooks as often as I do, but I tend to forget that this is not the usual. So I will cherish him more and open my eyes to the reality where equality means that most women work fulltime and shoulder the family and house dutys almost alone. I always knew that as a fact, but have never thought much about the consequences.
So you see, the book might not have been high-literature, but it got me thinking and reflecting and that's more than I can say about a lot of books.

Last but not least: I love the analogy of the books title, it's very powerful.

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Fran
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Post by Fran » 15 Dec 2011, 18:01

Schmunzelmonster wrote:To me the book was a quick and nice read. The story was not very inventive, but very well written. I would have liked to see Suze emancipate herself on purpose rather than by force and for her to get rid of all the stuff in her house that's not hers. I've been looking forward to a scene where she'll start to pick up all the woodwork and stuff and trash it, to free herself from the needs of other people, but it never came :-(
The book reminded me of how far we still have to go for equality. I am very blessed with a husband who irons, cleans and cooks as often as I do, but I tend to forget that this is not the usual. So I will cherish him more and open my eyes to the reality where equality means that most women work fulltime and shoulder the family and house dutys almost alone. I always knew that as a fact, but have never thought much about the consequences.
So you see, the book might not have been high-literature, but it got me thinking and reflecting and that's more than I can say about a lot of books.

Last but not least: I love the analogy of the books title, it's very powerful.
You should read 'How to be a Woman' by Caitlin Moran ... amongst other things she poses the question why is it sneered at or in some cases considered unacceptable for a working woman to employ a housekeeper or a cleaner but nobody questions why a man would employ a plumber or a gardener (or indeed a cleaner) instead of doing the work himself?
Before reading her book I had never considered that. She also has a very interesting angle on Muslim women & the issue of the veil.
It's also quite a funny book ... there is much in the day to day life of a woman you just have to laugh at! :)
We fade away, but vivid in our eyes
A world is born again that never dies.
- My Home by Clive James

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Schmunzelmonster
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Post by Schmunzelmonster » 18 Dec 2011, 08:39

@Fran: thank you for the recommendation, I will put it on my tbr list :-)

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Post by QTTg » 21 Dec 2011, 22:27

I like thie book very much . I have reade it three times .

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jimmy123
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Post by jimmy123 » 14 Jan 2012, 02:35

I think so like it.

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drcharms
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Post by drcharms » 22 Feb 2012, 07:43

What an excellent post. I have been thinking along the same lines but have could never channel my thoughts that well or grasp the concepts properly, Your post absolutely states what I always intended to say.

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Post by johnnydepp » 01 Mar 2012, 04:42

Walking with Elephants is Karen Bell's first novel, although she is not new to writing. After earning a graduate degree in mass communication she spent 15 years as an editor and writer of business materials. She says, "Inspiration for this novel came from my direct contact with the joys of Corporate America and the balancing act that comes with being a working mother." Currently, Ms. Bell resides in Ponte Vedra, Fl with her husband and photos of her children, granddaughters, and grandson who live everywhere BUT Ponte Vedra, Fl.

i just love this book.............

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Post by aaa123 » 24 Jan 2015, 16:04

I gave this book a two because it is not very engaging and not that interesting however the book is well written and is an easy and quick read.

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