Friday, February 10, 2012

Jeffrey Eugenides' Middlesex

One of the things I really miss doing while I was still in Singapore was visiting their National Library.  I'd usually stay there for hours on end since they have such an extensive collection of both fiction and non-fiction titles.  I'd be there by 12:00nn or 2:00p.m. and stay til Hubby leaves the office at 6:00 in the evening.

During one of my visits, I was browsing through the aisles looking for Jeffrey Eugenides' Virgin Suicides.  But, alas!  Someone had it on a loan and so I settled on the next best thing -- Middlesex.

Jeffrey Eugenides' Middlesex

Middlesex tells the story of a man named Cal Stephanides, who started life as Calliope.  His is not an easy and simple transition for in order for us to understand this turn of events -- of why a beautiful girl decided to live out her remaining days as a man, -- Cal takes us back to 2 generations past, from her married grandparents who, by the way, are also brother and sister.  Talk about twisted family ties!

Middlesex is a very interesting read that tries to answer the question of nature versus nurture.  Are we products of what nature has concocted us to be or are our personalities developed through our interactions with the people around us?

I'd usually veer away from reading award-winning novels, because truth be told, I never considered myself an academic, nor do I aspire to be so.  I was raised treating books as a magical place where I can escape reality, no weird or too heavy stuff mind you.  But with Middlesex, a Pulitzer Prize awardee, I happily make an exception.

To someone who studied Psychology, this is a fascinating read since most of the events and coincidences in Cal's tale make him truly such a remarkable case study.  Very fascinating!


  1. That sounds like an interesting book to read on a lazy afternoon. :-) It's great to relax with a nice book and be lost in it, even for a few hours :-)

  2. I try to veer away from books which have a heavy, mind-boggling plots. I'll look into this though, maybe I can make an exception too.. :)

  3. Interesting plot. Now I was wondering why Calliope became Cal.

  4. Nature vs nurture is very interesting.. I've always though that we are molded by our environment: people, situations, etc.

    Might queue this up on my "next to read" list.. It's a long list actually. Thanks for the review.

  5. You make this book sounds interesting and I am sold! I've read Eugenides' Virgin Suicide and I enjoyed it immensely. I guess I will give this one a shot as well :) Thank you for sharing this post!

  6. It's a really nice book. There are copies being sold in Booksale. You might findsome more there. =)

    @Ishmael Fischer Ahab: You have to read the book. It's a very intersting transition. =)

    @Yedy Calaguas: I'm still hoping for to read his Virgin Suicides. Maybe later in the year. I still have a number of books lined up kasi. Hehehe! =)


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