For me, Annie Dillard’s Pulitzer-winning pastoral ponderings were a complete miss. Overall the writing swung from pretentious to dull, her musings entirely self-absorbed, and clearly her modern attempt to emulate Thoreau’s Walden Pond. While others may find it highly absorbing to read a person’s personal diary about life in a modern-day backwoods, for this reader there was nothing particularly insightful or inspirational. It’s all been said before, been done before, with no new perspective on a back-to-nature pilgrimage, in a writing style that had me looking for something else, anything else, to do than read another passage of Dillard’s musings.
If you enjoy self-help books and pretentious biographies, Dillard’s book is for you.