May, 2015: The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles

(Book #61) Sharon hosted this evening and treated us to a wonderful view of the sheltering sky from the windows of her high-rise condo. We started with great wine, dates wrapped in bacon and another appetizer filled with cheesy nutty deliciousness. For dinner, we had a salad of carrots, dates and oranges, and chicken breasts in peanut sauce served over couscous. We know it was chicken and not rabbit because there was no evidence of fur! All of this was topped off by coffee and chocolate zucchini cake.

Our discussion about the book started with a question about the extent to which the book is autobiographical given the author’s travels in that part of the world. We found both the husband and wife to be difficult to understand, but the wife’s outlook on love and sex was puzzling. While Bowles writing can be quite stirring, I found it difficult to maintain an interest in the characters and their story. I could highlight passages of observations that I appreciated but was never quite sure that I cared what happened next.