Saturday, January 09, 2010
Mildred Pierce by James M. Cain
Mildred Pierce is a housewife and a baker. When she kicks her husband out for infidelity her life begins. This novel is fabulously successful as a period piece and a look at feminism and class in the nineteen thirties.
Mildred takes a job as a waitress to support her family, including the petulant Vera, one of the least likeable children in literature. We get sex, love, betrayl, crime and a lot of knowledge about how to cook the books (hehe) of a diner.
Of the three James M. Cain novels I read in 2009, this was my favorite, because the texture of the piece and the tragedy of the deal were the best conveyed. Don’t expect gat wielding gangsters here; this is crime of a different sort, and social drama of a more realistic nature.