Rating: 5/5 stars.
I don’t know where to start. It took me exactly two weeks to read this 1,024 page novel, and after all of the heartbreaking loss and squeal-worthy romance these characters have experienced, I can only say that there is a reason why this book is a classic. Even if you’re not a fan of romance, drama, historical fiction, etc., you need to read this book. You really do.
Above is the tidy little summary of how I feel about Gone With the Wind. Now I’m going to go into further detail about why I loved this book – but even after three hours, a workout session, and a delicious smoothie, I’m not sure it will sound right. My heart shattered three times just reading the last fifty pages.
Scarlett. Oh, I love this girl. I could write a 10,000 word essay about Scarlett O’Hara, with pleasure. I dare say that Margaret Mitchell’s greatest accomplishment with Gone With the Wind is the characterization of Scarlett, the headstrong and haughty protagonist. I can’t even begin explaining why I adore her so much without divulging plot details or letting loose a rant the size of the typical “terms and conditions” page seen so often (yet ignored, too). It requires serious skill to make the main character of a book selfish, stubborn, and sometimes completely unlikeable – but Mitchell pulls it off effortlessly.
Now, I’m no expert on history or the Civil War, but Mitchell’s take on this time period shocked me. She portrayed the South in an entirely different way than I was taught in school, and her grasp of the events that occurred is amazing. How she showed the loving relationships between slaves and their owners, how she cast the KKK as not just a hate group against Negroes, and how she connected Scarlett’s moral degradation with the fall of the South – it’s simply superb.
Though the sheer size of this book may seem intimidating, don’t be scared – it’s worth every word.