After reading and hating Henderson the Rain King, I approached The Victim with a sense of dread. I read this book as part of a reading challenge. Henderson the Rain King is one of those books that made me mad. I resented the author for putting me through that awful experience and desperately wanted the lion to just go ahead and eat Henderson, so I could be put out of my misery. I know lots of people love Bellow but he strikes me as a pretentious author who enjoys battering readers over the head with his philosophical musings.
So I approached The Victim with a sense of apprehension and resentment for the fact that I had pulled this particular author for one of my challenge books. Expectations, whether they be negative or positive, influence how we evaluate books. So, when I didn’t hate this one, I was pleasantly surprised and almost wanted to write a glowing 5-star review. However, had I not been basing my rating on my prior experience, this would not be a 5-star rating for me. So in an effort to be somewhat more objective, I settled on a 3-star rating.
Here’s my review: