Brood [Book Review]

March 9, 2021

Brood by Jackie Polzin

Brood by Jackie Polzin (cover) Image: colorful feathers spread across a brilliant blue sky

Genre: Contemporary Fiction

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My Summary:

Thank you #NetGalley @DoubleDayBooks for a complimentary e arc of #Brood to review upon my request. All opinions are my own.

In Brood, an unidentified female narrator cares for a small brood of chickens. She describes the challenges of bad weather, predators, and inexperience. The story is comprised of observations of ordinary, daily life with a few reflections.

My Thoughts:

Writing and Genre: Brood is beautifully written with some lovely prose and features a unique premise. However, my reading experience was a bit perplexing because I kept thinking of it as a journal (nonfiction) when it is actually fiction. Also, because this is described as having rich reflections, I went into the read expecting more reflection. Rather than reflections, we get observations of every-day life routines in journal style writing. From the beginning, I was confused about the genre and the author’s purpose. 

Character-driven: Readers who appreciate character-driven stories featuring plentiful observations of daily life might really like Brood. I have been known to appreciate a character-driven story, but I need a small plot to keep me turning pages. Wondering whether the chickens would live or die was the most intriguing part.

Making a Connection: Although parts of the story were interesting, I had difficulty connecting with it overall. I can connect with the task of caring for creatures in a general sense, but I felt little emotional connection with the narrator, her grief, miscarriage, household concerns, or her impending move. I do have chicken memories of visiting my grandma’s farm and watching her chase a chicken around the yard, wringing its neck, and chopping its head off. Then she’d plop the chicken into the kitchen sink and pluck the feathers. I can still vividly recall the smell of wet chicken feathers. I don’t remember having many experiences caring for chickens; however, I do remember being pecked on the nose once while gathering eggs! I can imagine if you’ve raised chickens or have been around them that you might enjoy parts of this story.

Recommended: Other readers have loved Brood. The person who recommended this to me reported that it would likely be her best read of the year. Every person has a unique reading experience and no two people read the same book. Fans of observational, character-driven stories and chicken owners might love this! Also, it is well written. I encourage you to check out more reviews.

My Rating:  2.5-3 Stars



Brood Information Here

Meet the Author, Jackie Polzin

Jackie Polzin

Jackie Polzin is a writer currently residing in St. Paul, Minnesota with her husband, two children and a small dog.



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