In this remarkable collection of short
stories, Sherwood Anderson carries a series of crafty and moving character through
the voice of George Willard who is the town reporter of Winesburg, Ohio. While
the stories seem sort of unconnected by the end is a joining theme. The lesson
of the book is that unhappy people are often stuck rather than the situations
they blame (such as their town). I can definitely relate to some of these
stories and I feel like their experiences and life stories become evidences which
are devastated and recreated as their life events are later explained.
I personally feel that the
book should be a required read
for teens/young adults in middle school or high school. The author has a unique
way of drawing the readers in with his mix of writing style. Anderson get his
audience attention by using the plot not as his main focus, but rather the
lonely lives of each selected character he’s developed in the story. He manages
to use one main character to tie the characters together throughout the story.
I liked his writing style using both third and first person to give you the feeling
of reading into each person’s life.
While some people have found
Anderson’s story sort of negative and cynical, I think it was just the thing
society needed in the time he wrote the book. When one reads Winesburg, Ohio such
as myself I realize Anderson must have read up on his Sigmund Freud before he
wrote the book. He writes about sexual desires, loneliness, and the need to
break free of their small-town mind set through-out the book. Living in the United States has its downside,
there is always sadness hovering all over this place. Anderson does a very fine
job of showing what humans feels inside and demonstrates that each person needs
to figure out where they are going in life, and what they’re meant to do to lead
a good and happy life.
The story that I felt the most
towards was “Tandy.” She was a young girl who lived with her father, Tom Hard.
Her father wasn’t a great person and ignored his daughter. When someone new
came to the small town of Wineburgs to quit drinking (and didn’t succeed). This
stranger cried to Tom, Tandy, and another character named George, explaining
that he was sad and addicted tomorrow. He also told Tandy to be Tandy. After a
while Tandy’s father called her name and she began to cry. She then demanded to
be called Tandy Hard, taking her dads last name. She didn’t want to give that
up. That is what life is about, finding your place. Although the story and the
entire book is dark, there were many parts that showed love.