The fifth Child

The Fifth Child

Just today I read the book “The fifth child” by Nobel prize winning author Doris Lessing. Did I like the book? Did I not? I don’t know. All that I know is that the climax of the book could have been better.

The Story, in short:

The story is about a married couple, David and Harriet, who bought a big house and have decided to raise many children. The first four deliveries were normal. But the fifth one was a bit abnormal. The fifth child, Ben as he is named, is very strange and gives cold, dangerous looks to everyone. The whole family of David and Harriet are against his living in the house and so everyone decides to send him to an institution. After a  few months, Harriet could not control her emotions and gets back to the institution to her child. She gets carried away by looking at his condition and she decides to bring him back home. At home, he is not whole heartedly accepted by his other four siblings as well as his father.  But he does well, he learns to socialize. Harriet puts in a lot of effort to socialize him and to some extent she achieves it. In the mean while the tree other children go to Boarding school along with their maternal/paternal grandparents and start liking there. The fourth child feels ignored in the house because Harriet is busy looking after Ben and his father is busy most of the time. The fourth one, Paul, was the most amiable kid amongst all of his siblings. But as time moves, he feels that he’s ignored. Ben grows up to became a brat, a spoiled brat and he choses nasty friends who give answers to his(Ben’s) parents. He along with his gang is sometimes seen on the TV commiting crime.

The eternal happiness that the family was looking for is now gone. The fifth child destroys everything.

I liked the way the characters of Dorothy (Harriet’s mom), Harriet, David, Paul and Dr. Brett were designed. I also liked the way of showing mother’s affection and love towards an abandoned child. Her feelings about his birth, commiting a crime and all was superbly shown. What I dislike was the ending. But I came to know later that the ending was the beginning of a new book (its sequel) Ben, in the world. And then I realized that it wasn’t a bad ending afterall. All in all this is an average book. I’d rate it a 2 on the scale of 5.

In case you want to read a dull horror story you can put your hand on this one.

Will come up with a post on another book soon. Happy reading!!

PS: Ernest Hemingway’s fiction Old man and the sea compelled me to read a book by another Nobel winning author. But not every book written by Nobel prize winning authors is awesome!

PS2: Life is a “Bittersweet Symphony” 🙂


Old man and the sea

hemingway - old man and the seaRecently, I’ve read the book Old man and the sea by Ernest Hemingway. Undoubtedly, it was one of the finest piece of fictions I’ve ever read in my life. The best 127 page fiction. 🙂

You can read the summary of the story from Wiki. So I’m not discussing about the story here. I’ll be dealing with the way of writing and the pace of the book.

The book has been written in an awesome way. The character of the old man has been beautifully designed. The story is quite inspiring and the pace with which the story moves helps the reader making his/her grip of the book tight. Well, I finished the book in one go. The first thought that came to my mind after completing the book was that “This book definitely deserves a nobel”. What a fantastic story! And what a beautiful way of narrating it! Hemingway, Hats off to you!

What I liked the most in this story is the psychology of the old man. When he’s alone, he speaks to himself. Every now and then he says “I wish the boy (his apprentice) was here”. Also the way he talks to the birds, to the giant marlin(which is his target) treating it as his friend and he is playing a game with it, to those small fishes, the way he fights with those sharks. I liked his way of looking at things, his zeal for catching the biggest fish, the way he keeps himself alive and pushes his limits everyday, his sacrifices, his dreams, his thinking, his character as a whole. Beautiful. Simply beautiful.

It is a must read book for everyone and I feel that an unabridged version of this book should be made compulsory in high school. At least in India. Fictions are many, but getting a nobel for a fiction is something that adds icing on the cake.

After reading this book, I became a big fan of Ernest Hemingway, and I’ve decided to read the rest of his novels too. So I’ll begin with For Whom the Bell Tolls.

Happy reading!! See you soon!! Till then Bye Bye!!

PS: Reading “The Fountainhead – Ayn Rand” currently. As of now it is awesome. Will write a post on it as soon as I complete reading the book. 🙂