There are times where people have said that I look at life through rose-colored glasses; I consider myself to be more of a realist. I've survived some pretty tough stuff and I see people and life with a balance for the good and the bad. Flannery O'Connor from Ann Napolitano's A Good Hard Look seems to be the same way. She has realized that reality is a coexistence of the good and the bad; it isn't one or the other. Read more >
A Good Hard Look was the first book I’ve read by this author, Ann Napolitano. As I was reading the book, I had mixed feelings about it, but it held my attention and I looked forward to finding a few minutes each day when I could read. Read more >
Sometimes the truth is ugly. American author Flannery O'Connor looks at the ugly inside the people of her small town of Milledgeville, and is in turn used as a character in Ann Napolitano's piece of fiction about her home town and the people who dwell in it. Those who seem to have everything in A Good Hard Look lead lives so dull and uninteresting, that they have to punctuate it with affairs, ambition, and lies. Read more >
When I read the back jacket flap for the book A Good Hard Look by Ann Napolitano, I was a little dismayed to see the author of a book featuring a fictional version of one of our great Southern icons is a New Yorker. I wondered: How can this be? Who is this Yankee that’s concerning herself with my Southern culture? Then I read the book. As it turns out, this Yankee just happens to be a damn fine writer. Read more >
Ann Napolitano was sensitive to the different nuances of Flannery O'Conner's emotional journey from an able youth to a disabled woman and I enjoyed the way she interacted with others throughout. She definitely carried the novel for me, acting as the hearty core that all actions and reactions returned to.
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I feel like I'm not really sure where to start my review of A Good Hard Look by Ann Napolitano. I feel a little bad being honest, but I guess that I don't ever want to be anything other than honest. Read more >
When peacocks scream at the beginning of A Good Hard Look, the reader knows it foreshadows dark events. Author Ann Napolitano calls their cry one of “desperation and desire,” an apt metaphor for the theme of this vivid story that builds slowly and effectively with every page. Read more >
Confession time: when I signed up to review Ann Napolitano'sA Good Hard Look, I didn’t recognize the name Flannery O’Connor. What stuck out to me, and the reason why I wanted to read the book, was that the book is set in Milledgeville, GA, where I have family and, at one point, considered going to college. I’m a sucker for anything Southern so this book seemed like a natural fit for me.
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In the harried state of the last week, I was able to pause a moment on my myriad of plane rides to dive into Ann Napolitano's new book, A Good Hard Look. From the first pages, I was intrigued by the cast of characters and Napolitano's ability to transport me to 1960's Milledgeville, Georgia. Throughout the book, I felt the warmth of the sun on the back of my neck as I felt anger, sadness, and even the sting of sympathy and regret for her well-crafted characters.
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