View Full Version : White oleander
01-14-2003, 11:31 AM
Ok I love to read, I will read just about anything from Sydney Sheldon to Johanna Lindsey to Classics (Dickens) to James Patterson. However, I read White Oleander and it was just not as good as the hype that was put up to it. I have never seen the movie, so I didn't have a predetermined idea of what it should be. I just read reviews. Maybe I just didn't get it?
Has anyone read this book and actually enjoy it?
01-14-2003, 12:02 PM
I started it about 2 weeks ago and haven't picked it back up since. So, I guess that it really hasn't hooked me. Maybe I will give it another chance tonight before I go to sleep.
01-14-2003, 12:26 PM
That is one of the few books that I have read that I really disliked. I read it around the time that they were getting ready to release the movie and I couldn't understand why they would make that book into a movie :confused:
You are not alone!
01-14-2003, 01:55 PM
I agree. I want to see it now though to find out what parts they thought were movie worthy. It is so cerebral that I would find it hard to be put into a movie, unless you just want a movie about how terrible our legal system is and how foster care is a money making venture.
I finished it, but it wasn't worth the hype. Have you read She's Come Undone? It felt really similar.
01-15-2003, 07:21 AM
I have seen the movie and read the book. I saw the movie before I read the book, and maybe that made it easier to read because I knew what would happen and I had a feel for the story already.
The story is horribly sad, and I pray that most foster care isn't like that. I don't have any experience with it myself or know of anyone who has, so I have nothing to base that on.
I think the acting in the movie was fairly good. I also like how the book was written, and the way the narrator spoke was so fluid and I enjoyed the way she spoke. I don't want to say I enjoyed the story exacty because it is so sad, but I don't think that the foster homes were the point of the story. The whole story was about Astrid becoming her own person and getting out from underneath her mother's wing.
I hope I'm making sense. I'm finding it kind of hard to put it into words.
01-15-2003, 07:39 AM
I see where you are going, but I really don't think you can become your own person in 20 years. She was staying in Germany for her boyfriend, not because she wanted to. She was making her own choices, yes, but still living her life for the sake of another person. When it ends she is dirt poor, with no heat, in another country. Not a feel good book at all, needless to say. I'm glad it didn't have a happy ending, because that would have been foolish, you can't just forget and erase scars like that, but a starving artist trying to please her boyfriend isn't much of a "coming of age" novel. Perhaps it should have ended a chapter before it did, giving you a chance to allow her to go home if you wanted her to. :)
01-15-2003, 07:48 AM
Oh, that's true, I hadn't thought of it that way. And she did say at the end of the book that she still wanted to go back to L.A. and be with her mother. What a strange relationship. You're right, it's not a "feel good" type of book. I'm definitely not going to read it again, that's for sure, but I'm glad I did read it. I'm always so curious about a book that's been made into a movie, especially if I see the movie first. If I hadn't read it, I'd always wonder what it was like. It was worth it to satisfy my curiosity, if nothing else. ;)
01-15-2003, 12:42 PM
It's not a book I could recommend for various reasons, and usually I don't like dark topics, but I found this book to be a real page turner. So, I enjoyed it, yet I never recommend it to anyone.
Edited to add that I wasn't aware a movie had been made of it. I wonder if that's any good.
Me: 35, Dh: 34 (1989)
<font color="#FF850B"><font size=2pt> Dd: May 2001</font></font>
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01-15-2003, 01:46 PM
I read the book, and although it certainly wasn't what I'd call a great book, what I came away with is how much our mothers shape our psyche - (good and bad), and also how differently we see love, and espress it. The mother (who, in my opinion, was a psycho), really thought that she was doing her daughter a favor with all the things she wrote to her over the years, and my raising her the way she did. It was only in the very last that she realized that what ASTRID needed was to love her the way Astrid needed. By leaving her alone. I think that action really showed Astrid that although her mothers love was flawed, it WAS love. IMHO, the relationship between mothers and daughters is one that is so fraught with psycological land minds that it takes a lifetime of living (and growing up), to make sense if it! Thank God I had a great one! (But, I fear, if you ask MY daughter, she would NOT say the same thing about me!) :D
01-15-2003, 02:45 PM
Well, I am glad to see I wasn't the only one that thought the book was on the dark side. I agree that it was well written, however at times I was fustrated with the mom. She was very good at trying to manipulate Astrid...and for a side note...I had a close friend that was in foster care...she said that was the a little more extreme than the norm, but the part where Astrid was taking care of the children for that lady where Olivia was the neighbor next door was very accurate.
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