Janie is a great character. She has so much common sense and I loved the way she behaved, not caring about social standards. She is also soft and feminine and romantic, so basically she's real. Her story is both sad and happy. A large portion of her life is very hard, but eventually she finds true love and her life is finally like she imagined and hoped it would be when she was a little girl.
One thing that I didn't like at the beginning but understood better after reading the introduction to this book is the dialogue between men. It annoyed me and I thought it was because it never actually brought the story forward, it didn't really contribute anything. I read afterwards that the author did this on purpose to signify a lack of growth. That made me see the novel in a completely different context.
I had some trouble 'reading the accent'... it was slow going at times and I really preferred the third person narrative just because it was easier to read.
And with writing like this, I didn't want to miss anything. Zora Neale Hurston's prose has been described as poetry and at times it really is. Here are two sentences that spoke to me:
It was like a flute song forgotten in another existence and remembered again.
Isn't that beautiful? Or:
There are years that ask questions and years that answer.
That is so true. And beautiful. And, to me at least, so powerful that the words are alive.
It makes me happy that a book like this is now a classic, considering that it didn't get very good reviews at the beginning. Not surprising though, since most reviewers were men!
Challenges: Decades Challenge, Genre Challenge