Kingsolver walks a tightrope here, not always successfully, as she updates âDavid Copperfield' and slams it down into the heart of Appalachia for a look at what institutional poverty and disintegrating family structure does to children growing up in that toxic environment.
4.5 stars, wonderfully written yet a tad too long - by the end I just wanted to finish the story. A glimpse into poverty, foster care, and addiction, Demon Copperhead is a character I will not forget. I have never read David Copperfield by Charles Dickens or a Barbara Kingsolver novel, so I went into this just knowing it had great reviews and it did not disappoint.
An interesting story on a boy growing up in southern Appalachia. Surrounded by drugs, poverty and abuse, he strives to make the best out of everything but soon his world falls apart. Thrown into the foster care system, he struggles to keep his head above water. Finally, he gets to a place where luck would find him only to crash his dreams and send him spiraling into his own world of substance abuse. This is his heart-wrenching yet hopeful journey.
It was a good book and I really felt like I was part of the story. Growing up as a child near the area, I could relate to the small town life. I did feel it was a bit too long. I was reading with gusto until about 2/3 of the way, then it just started to slog for me and I struggled to finish. Even though the ending was satisfying, I ended up feeling more relieved that it was done than anything else.