Since I have more or less cleared my night stand of most books, now I have the pleasure of 'rebuilding' it! First up is a new book for my monthly prompt. Although the first book I selected was most promising and I like the alternate storytelling from the various points of view, it now has sad connotations associated with it, so I will return to it later. So a little Ira Levin to stir things up. I was reading the introduction this morning written by Peter Straub, and it sounds quite subversive, though the popular interpretation of the 'perfect wife' may not be the only or best one. The novel is quite slender (so I hope to still squeeze in another prompt book yet this month), so I will go back and reread the introduction and see if my 'interpretation' jives with Peter Straub's.
The Stepford Wives was published in 1972 at the height of the Feminist movement, so Levin was either responding in some way to the national conversation or just had impeccable timing. Maybe I will go back and see if I can find some reviews from when the book was first released. I have seen the original movie, but this is the first time I will have read the book.
Just a brief teaser from the opening pages as I am only just getting started myself.
"The welcome wagon lady, sixty if she was a day but working at youth and vivacity (ginger hair, red lips, a sunshine-yellow dress), twinkled her eyes and teeth at Joanna and said, 'You're really going to like it here! It's a nice town with nice people! You couldn't have made a better choice!' Her brown leather shoulderbag was enormous, old and scuffed; from it she dealt Joanna packets of powdered breakfast drink and soup mix, a toy-size box of non-polluting detergent, a booklet of discount slips good at twenty-two local shops, two cakes of soap, a folder of deodorant pads--".
Already Stepford isn't looking too promising, is it?! I think Ira Levin is an underrated or maybe just underread writer these days. I really liked Rosemary's Baby which I read earlier this year and plan on picking up a few more of his books along the way in the near future. [And gosh, it feels good to pick up a book again and lose myself in a story].