Barometer Rising: 03/16/07
Last year I received three boxes of books that were library discards that would have been recycled for their paper if they were not taken. In other words they had failed to sell at the normal "friends of the library" type sales and were taking up precious space. Among those books was Barometer Rising, a romance set against the events of the Halifax explosion of 1917.
Barometer Rising is one of those books I've heard of but haven't read. It is considered as a classic of Canadian literature though perhaps not as well known outside of Canada as MacLennan had hoped it would be. Having now read the book I have conflicted feelings about it. One the one hand, I learned about the Halifax explosion and was inspired to read more about it from other sources. On the other, the romantic bits of the book bored me to tears.
The descriptions, actions and dialogue of the main characters were wooden. The heroine came of as a weird blend of the stock L. M. Montgomery protagonist and "Rosie the Riveter". Although she was like Penelope pining for her lost love at a time of war I didn't like her enough as a character to emphasize with her.