Stoner by John Williams

stonerOctober 2014

Stoner was a great hit. The novel tells the story of William Stoner, a farm boy whose parents made huge sacrifices to send him to college to study agriculture, but he fell in love with literature and became an English professor – assistant professor – married, had a little girl, taught through both World Wars, and lived what most would call an unremarkable life.  One of our member’s experience with the book was typical for most of us:

“I was a reluctant reader with this book, for quite a while. I read the first couple of chapters and left it, knowing I’d probably allow it to filter to the bottom of my book reading stack. However, with such a lovely summer, my book pile started to shrink and Stoner was back on top. I began with the intention of skim reading, but slowly Stoner sucked me in. I found Stoner to be unremarkable and mundane, a man cocooned in a self inflicted cage (maybe out of a misguided innocence, duty and expectation). But I warmed to him as his wrappers and inner layers were revealed. Some may say he lacked courage but he followed his beloved books, the true love and pure passion in his life. There was a parallel of courage and dignity with an amount of acceptance.”

Points: 9.5 – 9.5 – 9.5 – 9 – 9 – 9 – 9 – 9 – 8.5 – 8.5 – 8 – 8 – 7.5

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