Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Review: The Cradle by Patrick Somerville (And A Question)

So let me ask this question before I tell you what I thought about this book:

Is it just me or do male authors make you cry? Maybe I'm just weird but it seems that lately, the books written by men that I've been reading have been making me cry! There this one, George Bishop's "Letter To My Daughter," Nicholas Sparks, etc. Is it a new trend? Making us women cry LOL!?

What I Thought:

This was a seriously fantastic book in my opinion. The author weaves such a powerful story of love and connection that I literally cried my eyes out at several points in the book.

The storyline itself is just touching and real (not necessarily the events but the emotions) and you just feel so emotionally connected to these characters.

I only had one problem and that was I wanted a "meatier" ending to the story. Don't get me wrong now...the ending was good but I would have loved more. So really...that was my only issue. *shrug* I still loved it anyway.

I would have to say that overall I adored this one. It made me laugh, it made me think, and it made me cry. I recommend this one highly...especially to those out there that loved "Letter To my daughter" and similar books.


About The Book:

(from Publisher's Website)

Early one summer morning, Matthew Bishop kisses his still-sleeping wife Marissa, gets dressed and eases his truck through Milwaukee, bound for the highway. His wife, pregnant with their first child, has asked him to find the antique cradle taken years before by her mother Caroline when she abandoned Marissa, never to contact her daughter again. Soon to be a mother herself, Marissa now dreams of nothing else but bringing her baby home to the cradle she herself slept in.

His wife does not know-does not want to know-where her mother lives, but Matt has an address for Caroline's sister near by and with any luck, he will be home in time for dinner.Only as Matt tries to track down his wife's mother, he discovers that Caroline, upon leaving Marissa, has led a life increasingly plagued by impulse and irrationality, a mysterious life that grows more inexplicable with each new lead Matt gains, and door he enters.

As hours turn into days and Caroline's trail takes Matt from Wisconsin to Minnesota, Illinois, and beyond in search of the cradle, Matt makes a discovery that will forever change Marissa's life, and faces a decision that will challenge everything he has ever known.Elegant and astonishing, Patrick Somerville tells the story of one man's journey into the heart of marriage, parenthood, and what it means to be a family. Confirming the arrival of an exuberantly talented new writer, THE CRADLE is an uniquely imaginative debut novel that radiates with wisdom and wonder.

About The Author:

Patrick Somerville grew up in Green Bay, Wisconsin, attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and later earned his MFA in creative writing from Cornell University. He is the author of the story collection Trouble (Vintage, 2006), and his writing has appeared in One Story, Epoch and Best American Nonrequired Reading. He lives with his wife in Chicago, and is currently the Blattner Visiting Professor of Creative Writing at Northwestern University. This is his first novel.


Book Extras:

The Cradle - Q&A
Author Essay - The Cradle
Reading Group Guide

**review copy provided by the Hachette book group


  1. Now I need to read this. Thanks for the great review.

  2. I have been wanting to read this. Now I am going to have to get it for sure!! Thanks!

  3. Hmm, I hadn't really thought about male authors making me cry but now that you mention does seem to happen. Maybe it's only with books geared to women by male authors: a la Sparks. I DEFINITELY notice a difference b/w books written by men and women though.

  4. Well Carrie I'm glad your noticing it also LOL...and you have a point in that it's only the ones geared towards women. I hadn't even thought about that.

  5. I have heard others say that also. They do know how to write for woman thats for sure. I enjoyed both of those books.

    Thanks for recommendation, great review.

    I recommend The Wednesday Letters by Jason Wright

  6. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  7. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  8. Marce I'll have to check that one out. Thanks for the rec. I hadn't heard of it. :)