Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

#44 in my book challenge for the year, and #20 in my summer reading challenge, was Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides. Since it’s been sitting on my shelf for about four years, it’s a good reminder that I should not buy books on impulse. It is appropriately epic in scope, for a sprawling tale of Calliope/Cal Stephanides, a genetic boy raised as a girl. (Calliope is the muse of epic poetry.) It is touching, frequently funny, and crowded with memorable characters. It’s a family history as well as an investigation into identity, sex, gender, and history. There’s much to enjoy while reading, and much to ruminate on once it’s done. The non-linear narrative helped make the long book go quickly, though a few times it made me wonder at things that didn’t quite match up.

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