Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Snapshot Book Review: Turtle Feet

Turtle Feet Turtle Feet by Nikolai Grozni

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Major theme of the book: finding oneself and meaning in one's life. Who can fail to relate to that?

Moreover, Turtle Feet is a well-written memoir with a suitable ending--sounds like my ideal book. Ultimately, however, it came out to be a somewhat interesting, somewhat enlightening, and also somewhat repetitive and forgettable book. The "supporting characters" are more interesting than the narrator, and because the narrator's reactions to these characters are predictable as well as predictably told, the reader never really laughs out loud at any amusing anecdotes, nor are we able emotionally connect with the narrator.

Nevertheless, the book is well written and one of the more thorough and candid accounts of monastic life I have read. I did enjoy it in spite of its lack of compelling storytelling, and I would recommend it to other memoir-lovers, as well as those interested in the rites, rituals, and lifestyles of any extremely religious devotee. Basically, try Grozni's writing before you pick up anything by Elizabeth Gilbert.

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