The Bean Trees by Barbara Kingsolver is a story about a fatherless Kentucky girl in her early 20’s who changes her name, gets into her broken down VW bug, and drives west until the car breaks down and she can’t afford to repair it. That happens in Arizona, but along the way, the main character, Taylor, acquires an unexpected traveling companion during a brief stop in Oklahoma.
The book, published in 1988, touches on illegal alien issues of the day by introducing characters in the story who are involved in conflicts Taylor has no previous knowledge of. Her Arizona roommate is afraid of everything which adds humor to the story.
I liked most of this book. The main character is so interesting. The ending did not grab me as I had anticipated it would. The book was on the Top 150 list, but I didn’t think it was one of the best books I’ve ever read. The first line of the book is GREAT! The writing is like poetry and beautifully written visual images are worth reading.