Books Magazine

My Heart Laid Bare by Joyce Carol Oates

By Pamelascott

Chronicles the endeavours of the Licht family-a clan of cheats, murderers, and con men-from the late eighteenth century through the 1930s, and details the moral consequences of their crimes and transgressions.


[Do I doubt? - I do not. Does my hand shake? - It does not. Am I like other men? I am not] ***

(Plume, 1 July 1999 (first published 1998), paperback, bought from Amazon)



I really didn't enjoy My Heart Laid Bare. I'm disappointed as JCO is one of my favourite writers.

The blurb sounds like it would be a great read. There are times the book is decent.

The main issue I had was with the language used. It is very dense and old-fashioned which made it a bit of a slog to get through. There's too much detail and information dragged out in painstaking detail across pages and pages that I was bored most of the time. I could not wait to slog through the book.

The language is really off-putting and left me cold. There is some good stuff here but the style used kills the book for me.

This seems to be a trait of JCO's Gothic Saga. I've now read all 5 books and only enjoyed 3 ( Mysteries of Winterthurn, A Bloodsmoor Romance and Bellefleur).

My Heart Laid Bare by Joyce Carol Oates

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