Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Loving Frank by Nancy Horan

My Recommendation: I don't really recommend this book. It is very sad and has a very tragic ending.

What I did like: The story itself is very interesting. I don't know a lot about Frank Lloyd Wright, but the descriptions of his theories were very interesting. I would love to see more of his homes based on the great descriptions the author writes.
I respect Nancy Horan for her obviously extensive research, and her attempts to tell Mamah Borthwick's side of the story. She really did try hard to justify the affair. I also liked her writing style. I have a page full of quotes that I liked from the book. The story was well told, I just didn't care for the story.
What I didn't like: I had a hard time sympathizing with the main characters. I will admit that had Mamah and Frank found themselves in the same situation 100 years later, their story would be drastically different. She could have filed for divorce, probably been given custody of her kids, and maybe lived happily ever after.
BUT, I just don't buy the theory that you can't be a good mom if your life isn't fulfilling in every way. Mamah felt something important missing from her life, and I do understand that. I just don't agree with the drastic measures she felt she had to take to improve her situation. She had a nanny and a housekeeper, so why didn't she have the time to make herself happy? I know I'm being critical.
"The greatest measure of her love would be to leave them alone." Nope, I disagree.


Kim Edwards said...

I love the honest way you review books. I am extremely curious about the book, but now I know it isn't worth my small amount of reading time. I love your blog!!!!

Kammy said...

Oh Kim, maybe you should read it! I'm curious if you know anything about a Utah connection. Taylor Wooley (from Salt Lake) is in the book a few times. My mom's friend grew up in a FLW house in Provo, and I'm wondering if he built it? Do you know anything about that?

Kim Edwards said...

I don't, Kammy. I vaguely remember a teacher at BYU talking about a FLW house in Provo, but I don't remember any details at all. So, really, you think I should read it? Maybe I'll just have to be strong and not let it get me down. : )

Kammy said...

I think, bottom line, the thing that bugged me about this book is how SELFISH Mamah was. I don't think there is any other way to describe her. The book is a very interesting story, so I enjoyed parts of it. Then the ending was so tragic, it kind of soured me on the whole thing.

Sara said...

hi kammy

i heard that this was a not-great book from someone else and so i didn't read it. HOWEVER, i did just tour Taliesen West, his workshop/winter-campsite/home here in Scottsdale. And I was struck by how selfish and petty HE was. I just have no use for a genius who is this self-absorbed. It seemed like it was "right" if he liked it, and it had to be his way to be "right."

Kammy said...

I got the same impression of Wright from the book. It chronicles how he would be late paying his faithful workers, behind on bills, and suddenly he would order 3 grand pianos because they would be the perfect touch to the home.