The Good Earth by Pearl Buck

Book Cover

Probably a 3.5 stars for me but I rounded it down because I thought the plot was predictable and this is one of the few books I believe that could have used a bit more detail. It is a good book, and one that was probably ground-breaking when written, about the life of Wang Lung and his wife O-Lan who were poor peasant farmers who made a living on their land, and who eventually through hard work and luck, were able to purchase greater amounts to land. In the story we are introduced to Wang’s elderly father as well as his uncles family. Children are born, droughts and floods occur, there is starvation and begging and we see a lot of people leeching off of Wang Lung. He is a proud man who has a good sized ego and when he lets his ego and desires get in the way of his love of the land and farming the issues crop up. There are not a lot of decent characters in the book, and Wang’s family is consumed with status and also despise each other. Glad I read the book, and it should produce a lively discussion at book club.

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