Tuesday, March 2, 2021

275. Main Street

Main Street
Sinclair Lewis
1920
Around 450 pages




















I always mix up this novel in my head with Sister Carrie, with Sister Carrie being the novel I hold in higher regard. This is nothing particularly wrong with this book, it's just very bleak and dreary. Like Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, but somehow even more depressing.

Carol Milford is an optimistic daughter of a judge. She marries Will Kennicott, a doctor, and they move back to Will's hometown of Gopher Prairie, Minnesota. Carol is excited to put her ideas to improve the small town into practice. Predictably, it's not as easy to enact change as she imagined.

I feel like there are many such works that explore similar themes. A character begins the novel wide-eyed and bushy tailed and becomes less innocent as the novel progresses. I have nothing negative to say about Sinclair Lewis's writing style, but I don't think this is the most original work we've come across.

Personally, Carol didn't annoy me. I think it would be easy for that type of character to really grind on your nerves, so good on Lewis for managing to remain relatable.

RATING: ***--

Interesting Facts:

The town of Gopher Prairie is a fictionalized version of Lewis's hometown, Sauk Centre.

UP NEXT: The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton. Yay!


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