Mary Coin by Marisa Silver
Describe it in 25 words or less. An imagined story surrounding the “Migrant Mother” photograph.
What did you think of the cover art? I think the “Migrant Mother” photograph is much more powerful in black and white but I also think that colorizing it was good for this particular story in emphasizing that it is in fact fiction.
Who was your favorite character and why? Walker Dodge because he was sensitive and observant.
Who was your least favorite character and why? Vera Dare because she was very self-centered.
Did it grab you immediately or did it take a while? It drew me in immediately with my favorite character’s story and held my interest throughout with the stories of the other 2 main characters.
What did you think of the ending? Disappointing and anti-climatic.
What was the moral of the story? You’ll never know the whole story.
Did you learn anything? I actually looked up Dorothea Lange and Florence Owens Thompson in order to see how similar their actual lives were to the characters in this book. Very interesting.
Favorite quote: “Parents never told their real secrets. They never let you know how they lived in the spaces between working and cooking and running after children and counting dollars.” – Mary
What would you change? The ending. I needed something more from it.
Would you like to see it adapted into a film? No, because I think it would be too easy to mistake it for a biography rather than a work of fiction.
Who would you recommend it to? People who enjoy really in-depth character study novels.
Number of unknown words: 27
Craft/Activity: Go to a photography museum.
Recipe: Bacon and Nutella Sandwich
Artwork: Migrant Mother series by Dorthea Lange (1936)
How do you feel about fiction based on real people?