**** P.H. 2018
I gave this book 4 stars although I did not particularly enjoy this book. The reason I dislike this book is because I have a hard time relating to Nora. I can not understand how she was able to walk away from everything her life has ever been including her husband, house, and hardest of all, her kids. The reason I gave this book such a high review is because Ibsen developed all of the characters in the book in such an amazing way, that it feels like I could be placed in the book and watch the characters handle their problems. Nora was the big question and the focus of the story and was by far the most developed character. The reader can see her go from a women who listens to everything she is told to a character who has her own mindset and can act upon her thoughts. Her historic crime of forgery comes back to haunt her and leaves the reader gasping as Torvald makes his way to the mailbox and is stopped several times. Beware of a little revenge....
** M.C. 2018
Ibsen writes brilliantly and he ultimately succeeded in undermining the status quo and stirring up the society of his time, but this book didn't connect with me at all. While I'm in no place to be a critic of an established author and playwright, I must say that Ibsen's flaw is that the Doll House doesn not have a protagonist that I could root for. There isn't a character in the story that I felt connected with, or could wish them success and the best. The one who came the closest was Christine who seems to be a level-headed mediator, but even she seems meddlesome at times. It was hard to keep reading when I was repulsed by the their superficial and surface-level perspective of the world. I get that Ibsen was trying to illuminate societal inequalities and bring some issues out from under the rug, but it would have been so much better if he had thrown in a sensible character in the mix of chaotic idiots.
The play "A Doll's House," by Henrik Ibsen portrays to the reader the picture-perfect image of a respectable family in the late 1800s. The wife dotes on the husband and children and the husband supports the family (and has even recently achieved a promotion at his job). However, beneath the "picture-perfect" veneer, it soon becomes apparent that the family isn't so flawless after all. The wife, Nora, has committed an egregious crime. Unbeknownst to her husband, Nora has taken out a loan- and forged her late father's signature to get it. Ibsen takes this time to highlight the gender incongruities of this time period, by featuring the illegality of women taking out loans on their own accord. As the play continues, the reader is on the edge of their seat as Nora navigates the return of her childhood friend, Christine, her bitter lender, Krogstad, and her unsuspecting husband, Torvald. Despite being thought of as incompetent in many respects due to her gender, Nora proves herself adept in the field of manipulation in order to sustain her family's reputation. Unfortunately, it all falls apart as Krogstad's jealousy of Torvald's promotion leads him to blackmail, eventually reaching the climax of the play as he sends a letter of Nora's actions to her husband. As Krogstad and Christine reunite, Nora and Torvald's marriage disintegrates, and Nora realizes she has lived her whole life as a doll-person; pretty to look at, but that is the extent of her worth. She decides her best option is to abandon her family and go find herself. This is a decision not many would be able to make, leaving the reader to question the extent of society's influence in their own lives, and what they would be willing to do to rid themselves of it.
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