Part of The Year of Reading Women group reads.
Overall, I like Doris Lessing. The Golden Notebook
was lovely, The Good Terrorist
was interesting, and I'd been meaning to get back into her work for a while. A multi-volume read as part of a group of Goodreaders? Sure, I'll take that on.
Martha Quest, the eponymous character of this volume, grows up on a rural African farm, chatting with the local shopkeeper's boys who she relies on for books as well. She's well-read, spunky, but definitely a product of her surroundings even if she is trying to escape them. When she does escape, it's to another more urban life entirely. She matures and changes, naturally, over her experiences. There's a touch of "Mad Men" in the second half, with office work and the environment around it replacing the African farm that served as the backdrop for the first half.
While I was frustrated with the ending of this volume, it won't stop me from finding out what happens next to Martha. Doris Lessing tends to write very intriguing female characters, and I'm interested to see what where Martha will go next.