Review of Pierre; or, the Ambiguities – J.G.

Pierre was an interesting read, but not necessarily one I would recommend to my peers. I found the combination of listening to the audiobook and reading the book to be the most effective. In fact, I don’t think I could have made it through the book unless I listened to it. I would have been lost in the details.

Pierre was one of those reads where you are completely frustrated most of the time. I was grasping at every small clue Melville gave us as to whether or not Isabelle was actually Pierre’s sister. In a way, the ambiguity of the story was the only thing that kept me reading it. The overall plot was full of holes and fairly unbelievable. Would anyone really take an emotional letter declaring that they had a new sister seriously? Would you stake your entire livelihood on the word of a complete stranger, who can only remember vague details about her past, which happen to line up with your vague remembrances of your past?

My brother’s cat, and also an accurate representation of my expression while I was reading Pierre. *suspicious*

I’d give this book a 2 out of 5, only because I enjoyed having to decipher the passages. It was almost like a puzzle. I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone looking for a bit of light reading, or really anyone who enjoys a sound conclusion. Pierre leaves off abruptly and unsatisfyingly. Did I enjoy reading through it once? Yes, if only to say that I’ve read a bit more of Melville.