Published by Hogarth on April 29, 2014
Genres/Lists: #30Authors, Diverse, Fiction
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Let me start off by saying that this book isn’t what you think it is. I went into it thinking it was going to be a love story story that followed the main character, Ruby, out of her hometown to NYC and back again, with all the ups and downs that it entailed. While this is true, in a sense, (the reader does get a glimpse of Ruby’s transient life), the bulk of the book focuses on Ruby in the present day, with flashbacks to the past to explain who she is. It’s also not a traditional love story, although there are elements of a love story woven within.
Now that I’ve gotten out of the way, let me just say that I really enjoyed Ruby. Set in a deeply religious town in the south, Ruby is about a woman with a difficult past and the man who comes to her aid. Together, the help each other heal while dealing with intrusion by outsiders who have a difficult time leaving the past in the past. The writing is lyrical and it’s clear that the author put careful consideration into each and every word she wrote. From the descriptions of people and places to the unfolding of heart-wrenching events, Ruby is nothing short of an emotional experience. I fell in love with both Ruby and Ephram, despite their flaws. Even more than that, I was able to understand where a few of the antagonists were coming from, even when I disagreed with them. For Bond to be able to elicit sympathy from the reader for the bad guy Ruby is an indication of what a talented writer she is.
I will admit, there were portions of this book that were difficult to read and threw me off a little bit, but once I readjusted to what the book is versus what I thought it was, it was wonderful. If you enjoy books that explore the dark side of people or uses past experiences to shape a current character, then Ruby is definitely for you.