My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Sum it up in a sentence (or two): The sweeping epic of one girl who grows up to be a man, starting in a tiny Turkish village and taking us through three generations of the Stephanides family as they travel to America, settle in Detroit, and make a life for themselves there.
First thoughts: Middlesex is the longest book I've read in a while, and thanks to school, took me a lot longer to finish than most books do. Still, I never wanted to abandon it. It truly is epic.
Lingering questions: Why is Chapter 11 (Cal's brother) so called? If it's in the book, I missed that part.
Changes I would make: I wanted to hear more about the present and Cal's current life, less about her ancestors.
"I've never had the right words to describe my life, and now that I've entered my story, I need them more than ever." -p217
"If this story is written only for myself, then so be it. But it doesn't feel that way. I feel you out there, reader." -p319
"But in the end it wasn't up to me. The big things never are. Birth, I mean, and death. And love. And what love bequeaths to us before we're born." -p388
"We're all made up of many parts, other halves. Not just me." -p440
Final thoughts: Middlesex sheds light on important issues of gender identity, nature v nurture, how we raise our kids based on gender, transitions, and the love we find in our own families. I was surprised to find that it was published in 2003, as so much of it felt contemporary.
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