Brooklyn is a gentle story about a young woman emigrating from a small town in Ireland to Brooklyn in the 1950s.
The writing is very simple and the plot basic, but this meant it could be read very quickly. The book captures the nostalgia of someone who leaves their home and the culture-shock they encounter when moving to a new country.
I found the book too gentle for my tastes, but I can see that it would appeal to a lot of people. The story is one I’ve heard many times before and although the writing is carefully controlled it didn’t offer anything that I hadn’t seen before.
The characterisation was also a bit flat for me. The central character, Eilis, didn’t display any strong emotions. The story was revealed through her observations and she just seemed to be pulled along by the plot rather than taking an active part in it. I prefer my characters to display a bit more strength or emotion than she did.
Overall I was a bit under-whelmed by this book and would only recommend it to those who enjoy books with a gentle plot.
I have heard great things about Colm Tóibín, but this is the first of his books which I have read.
Have you read any of his other books?
Are they written in a similar way to this?