Nevertheless, I was halfway through the book before I cared about any of the characters, and even at that point I only began to care for one. By the end of the book I was involved and caring and hoping for a happy ending. I did not find the book very engaging.
In spite of the novel's obvious strengths, I would be surprised if many readers actually liked this book. I would expect it to win awards for the skill the author brought to bear in crafting it, but I would not expect the normal, every-day, run-of-the-mill reader to care a great deal for reading it.