“The Girl Who Never Read Noam Chomsky”

A photo of the book "The Girl Who Never Read Noam Chomsky.

Unlike many of my books which I find, place on my list, and casually ignore for months before deciding I’m ready, “The Girl Who Never Read Noam Chomsky” reeled me in immediately. I like to wander into my brick and mortar independent bookstore, Star Line Books, looking for one tome, knowing it won’t be there and I’ll have to order it, as an excuse to find something else in the process. The electric green cover begged for attention; I am also a girl who hasn’t read Noam Chomsky.

Diving in on the family beach trip, I found I hated that girl, Leda. Neurotic and pleading for something to happen in her life. A good taste for literature, but lacking in gumption to do anything with it. Wanting to read Noam Chomsky because of a cute boy. Waiting for nice ones rather than going to get them. Following them on their careers, quitting her own to settle down. No drive, no desires, just wafting, A limp character.

My initial distaste for Leda tempered with how I grew to love her story. The book is a collection of the perfect moments to depict a life. Some moments are boring, some interesting, some scary, some all too precise in describing the moment of putting up with a friends’ breakdown. As Leda inches along in her life, still neglecting the book by the great thinker, I watched her mature from an anxiety prone, unconfident college student into a grown woman, secure in her choices of motherhood.

It’s not the story I want, but it probably is, as it claims to be, one of those truthful depictions of modern womanhood. People who don’t like books will complain that this is a book where nothing happens. People who do like books will enjoy a carefully crafted portrait of a person.

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