I was completely shocked after reading Pearl S. Buck's remarkable novel, The Good Earth. It was somewhat hard not to stop what I was doing afterwards and try to put myself in the character's shoes and visualize everything that happen in the book. I was so taken by the plot that I remember not wanting to put down the till I knew what happen next in one of the conflicts in the story. Considering my reaction to it when I fist got the book and my reaction to it now, you would really think it's ironic. Pearl S. Buck did an outstanding job on the books vivid description of the characters, emphasizing the importance of Wang Lung's land, and it's sense of dramatic reality.
The way the characters are described in the book you can really picture in your mind who they are. It's very important to be able to visualize them because it helps you get to know them better as characters and have a better understanding of the book. One vivid is O-lan's, Wang Lung's wife. "Wang Lung turned to the woman and looked at her for the first time. She had a square, honest face, a short, board nose with large black nostrils, and her mouth was as wide as a gash in her face. Her eyes were small and of a dull black color, and were filled with some sadness that was not clearly expressed. It was a face that seemed habitually silent and unspeaking, as though it could not speak if it would." (p.19) As I was reading this I got the impression that O-lan would be a faithful wife to Wang Lung and it turned out that I was right. The fact that she wasn't beautiful didn't matter at all. She served her family well.
Another meaningful description is Lotus', Wang Lung's first Mistress, which has an irony to it if you compare it to O-lan's. "If one had told him there were small hands like these he would not have believed it. Hands so small and bones so fine and fingers so pointed with fine long nails that stained the color of lotus buds, deep and rosy.