Eudora Welty – The Robber Bridegroom


I stumbled upon The Robber Bridegroom in a second hand bookstore, and was intrigued immediately, by the  quote on the cover:

A Gothic fairy tale set in the eighteenth century Mississippi.

I like Gothic fairy tales, most of the time, and this was no exception. It had all the key ingredients, worthy of a Grimm tale: a rich plantation owner, a beautiful daughter, the evil step mother, the bandits, and the neighbour’s pesky son.

Rosamond Musgrove lives with her father, a plantation owner, and her evil stepmother, Salome. While the father dotes on Rosamond, the typical step mother sends her to the far sides of the woods to get herbs, hoping some ill will fall upon her. She even hires the neighbour’s idiot son to harm her step daughter… And, one day, harm does befall the naive innocent daughter, when she meets a bandit while running errands, and from that point, things change…

When I first finished this book, packed with interesting characters, and a couple of parallel stories (including tales about Little Harp and Mike Fink), I was disappointed. I thought the characters hadn’t really been developed, and the book was superficial. Now, though, I think I appreciate its subtleties a lot more: be it the interaction between the bandits, the choices made by Rosamond, or the varying emotions that carry the book. Barring a couple of scenes, the book is practically suitable for children, and through the entire book, you do wonder when the fairy god mother is going to emerge to wave her wand, and make it all okay.

Rating: C

6 Responses to “Eudora Welty – The Robber Bridegroom”

  1. That cover quote would immediately draw my attention too. I quite like the cover aswell!

  2. I have the green VMC too and had it highly recommended by another blogger (Nymeth) although now I take it under advisement.

  3. Even though you gave it a C, the quote you described has intrigued me as well!

    It’s always fun finding books in second-hand bookshops, even if you end up not liking it :P

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