Human beings are complex animals, and this book is proof. A seemingly autobiographical novel, with the events viewed through the bell jar distortion, one may never find out how much was reality and truth, and how much was fiction and imagination. In Esther's life, there are contradictions throughout, whether it is the shrewd calculations behind sweet gestures, callousness underneath a friendly relationship, or the desire to experience the whole world battling with despair over socially acceptable roles for women. And adding to the complexity there came depression, something that harms you through narrowing your view of the world, bringing certain aspects of life under a microscope, and creating a black hole as your thoughts twirl around the same subjects in perpetual circles. Depression strangely alienates one from oneself, and it increases the challenge of character analysis. But isn't this everyman? Human psyche is almost annoyingly complicated but that's also why it is fascinating, to the point that all humanity subjects are efforts in understanding it better. This book resonates so deeply with generation after generation because of its candour in describing this complexity, the shame the judgment the feelings of superiority/inferiority the self-doubt the moments of weakness the brutal selfishness, and through the dazzling display of infinite nuances, hopefully we will get closer to a more profound understanding of human conditions.