I’m spoiled! I’ve read three good books in a row: Cloud Atlas (second time around), City of Thieves, and now Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. If I had to recommend only one, it would be Cutting for Stone. The reason why is because I found out Cloud Atlas is a little too incoherent for some people. City of Thieves is too short to recommend. Cutting for Stone is long, way long, but worth it. I think it’s also pretty mainstream like The Help. You’ve got the good people, the bad people, the tormented, the struggle, the pain, and then voila, freedom to move forward. You know how they say, no one ever got fired for buying IBM. Well you can’t go wrong by recommending The Help or Cutting for Stone.
The difference, though, is that there isn’t much to talk about after reading The Help. With Cutting for Stone, damn, there’s a lot to talk about—the different locations (India, Africa, the U.S.), the Eritrean struggle for power, the implications of spreading Catholicism and sending nuns to foreign land, medicine, surgery, liver transplants… I could go on. I mean, the book is almost 700 pages long. Anyone know that Ethiopia was occupied by Italy for some time?
If I had to describe this book in one sentence, I’d say, I felt like I traveled around the world and experienced these regions by peering into the lives of determined, resilient locals.
This is a beautiful, painstakingly detailed, but easy-to-read novel. Love love love this book.