A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline Summary Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of A Piece of the World

Plot Summary Part 4

Finally, at the end of the story, Andrew creates a painting of Christina lying on the ground and staring at the barn. She is facing away so we can't see her face but Andrew made her young and sexy looking, in a way she absolutely does not look now and probably never did. Then he basically tells her: "Look, look, this is your inner beauty!" or something ridiculous like that.

He calls the painting Christina's World. It's meant to be a positive thing showing Christina at her farm but to me, watching her lying crippled in the grass next to this old, empty farm, it looks very sad.

Christina tells Andrew how brilliant the painting is. Andrew has basically managed to glamorized her entire crippled, sad, lonely life at the farm. Christina is very happy.

Click here to see the rest of this review

And that's the end of this very sad, ridiculous, and nothing-happening book.

Literary Criticism:

I've read terrible books before, but seldom have I read a book that was terrible for so many reasons. Let me recount three of the biggest ones:

1) This book was boring. There was almost no story. Christina is crippled, gets a boyfriend, loses him, spends the rest of her life unhappy until she gets painted. How complex can a story be if you can write it all in one sentence?

2) This book was sad-porn. This book seemed to delight in dishing out sadness like it was an ever-popular flavor of ice cream. The whole purpose of the book seemed to be to make the reader sad. Who needs that?

3) This book was pretentious. The book pretended to have a great meaning, that there was hidden joy in Christina's life, that only "Art" from a "Master Artist" could unlock, but once he did, with the brilliance of his painting, the world would tremble at the greatness of his interpretation. This story reminds me of all the phony art I see in museums--you know, the paintings with the black or white stripes that everyone calls brilliant. We are supposed to think that Andrew's painting was brilliant as was his interpretation of the hidden "greatness" of Christina's life. The reality was neither, and this weak "art self-actualization" was what the entire book hinged on.

Click below for more about A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline
Plot pg1 Plot pg2 Plot pg3 Plot pg4
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
2 Ways to Search!

Our Chief Librarian