Iwona Banach - Chwast

Chwast - Iwona Banach

Remember what I said about Polish books? That they fall into one of the three categories - books about nazis and Jews, sacharine fluff/chick lit, and grim depressive stuff about REAL LIFE.
So this is grim depressive stuff about REAL LIFE.

We meet the main character as she stands on the roof of a building about jump off together with her daughter. So initially we think: what a bitch. Then we learn her daughter is mentally retarded, her husband is an abusive psychotic tyrant and she herself has cancer. When she dies her husband will send their daughter to an institution where she will spend her days banging her head against the wall. We also find out that the protagonist's mother abandonded her and ran off with some man. Her father kept telling her that her mother was dead but some obliging soul finally revealed to her that her mother was nothing but a whore who was chasing every man in town. Finally her daddy couldn't take it anymore so he comitted suicide by hanging himself on the chandelier for his daughter to find him. Also her father's friend molested her throughout her teenage years. Yup. At this point you think: "Ok, fair enough. Jump off that roof".
Oh, did I say that she caught her husband raping their mentally retarded daughter?
Right. So I understand that shit like that happens. I am even willing to believe that it might happen at once to one person because life can be cruel like that. But what I am not willing to accept is using piling up of every possible drama to make your book 'moving'. Seriously - the mentally retarded daughter would have been enough.
So that's the main issue I had with this book. The other one is that main character was just not likeable. We were supposed to pity her but I just couldn't. She was going on and on how everybody is cruel and horrible, how people are evil or rude at best. But given the opportunity she was just the same, she kept mentally gossiping and critising everybody around her and accusing them of the worst things by default. I just wanted to slap her. It was absurd. Apparently everybody HATED her daughter and wanted her to DIE. Seriously. DIE.
Why did I even give it three stars? That should have been two.