Unfortunately I'm not able to read French. All that I can take and follow is just something more of the general sense of an article or a short novel.Unfortunately I'm not able to read French. All that I can take and follow is just something more of the general sense of an article or a short novel. What a pity!
Excercises in Style is one of the funniest and maybe greatest experiment in modern literature. Five words are enough to make the plot: a man takes a tram. Queneau builds and writes 99 versions most of them no longer than a single page starting from the plain and objective description of this everyday's action.
Narrative styles, calembours, dialecticisms, parodies of lower and upper class ways of speaking, postmodern and pompous language, hermetisms and verbosities. All that you can think of about writing techniques has been thought and fixed on paper by this staggering genius called Raymond Queneau.
So what's the matter with rating? Why have I given just three stars to this undeniable masterpiece? Well, the answer has a famous name and surname: Umberto Eco. Indeed he has translated the Italian version of this book. Well, actually "translated" is not the right expression to use: Eco has written his own excercises in style instead of trying to translate properly Queneau's ones.
Surely I can understand how several excercises were difficult if not impossible to transform into Italian due for their own peculiarity like poetries. However I think that the Italian edition of this book should have been titled Umberto Eco -and not Raymond Queneau- "Excercises of style" and this heavy and inordinate role of the translator is something to avoid in literature.
Queneau deserves to be known for what he has really written and not for the furher variations he has influenced in Umberto Eco's beautiful mind. ...more
Well, I've to confess I've been a little bit disappointed reading at The Stranger. The first part of the story has convinced me more than the second oWell, I've to confess I've been a little bit disappointed reading at The Stranger. The first part of the story has convinced me more than the second one.
I've appreciated the description of Meursault's life in a sleepy and sunny still colonial Algeria. Sometimes I've had the impression to feel the salt of the mediterranean sea on my skin, the sand of a north African beach among my fingers, the sweat on my neck. At the same time I've felt no big empathy for the main character's moments of introspection before and after the turning point of the novel.
Anyway it has been an interesting reading and now I'm curious to know better all that Camus has written.
One of the very few books on the so called "philosophy" I've been able to digest. I've literally devoured CandiHilarious! And yet deep in its own way.
One of the very few books on the so called "philosophy" I've been able to digest. I've literally devoured Candide when I was 16. And then I've read it again, with double pleasure and double laughing.
Besides, thanks to Voltaire I've discovered that Leibniz is not only a biscuit.
This book is suggested to everyone who wants to look at his/her life in a better way while in a difficult period. Don't worry guys: whatever your troubles are, Candide's ones are worst! Do you think you've got bad luck? Read at Candide!
This book brought me to laughter. And this is not a compliment, but actually quite the opposite. Every character here is monodimensional and unrealistiThis book brought me to laughter. And this is not a compliment, but actually quite the opposite. Every character here is monodimensional and unrealistic, while the story itself is ridicolous.
Blame me if you like, but after the tenth masturbation scene filled up with philosophical rubbish and Andre Gide quotes I've felt a big nausea coming up. And this malaise stayed with me till the end of the novel.
There are many novelists who have their own obsession for sex and some of them are consistently good such as Philip Roth and Ian McEwan; Michel Houellebecq, in my humble opinion, is not.
PS: Review corrected and re-edited in September 2014....more
I've read this novel when I was just 14. It's one of the books we had to read in my class to discuss them afterwards.
Madame Bovary has been one of theI've read this novel when I was just 14. It's one of the books we had to read in my class to discuss them afterwards.
Madame Bovary has been one of the few books I've been obliged to read that I really appreciated. At that time I didn't understand anything about love, passion and betrayals because I was still a child, and yet I had the impression that Flaubert had written a masterpiece.
I remember so clearly that when we chatted about the novel in my classroom, my literature professor joked about one of my classmates referring at her as "our Emma Bovary". The "bovarized" girl began to weep desperately accusing the professor to have called her a bitch and a whore. (Actually she wasn't, but she really had something of Emma in her own).
In the following ten years I've never read this novel again neither I've learnt that much about love, passion and betrayals. Then, days ago, I've heard a programme at the radio which was about Madame Bovary's character. The host and his guests were speculating on what would ever happened if Emma had met Sigmund Freud and so on.
That has made me recall the novel. And suddenly I've understood that I've met some Emmas in my life. I'm kind of a romantic and anachronistic guy who has always thought that there are few possibilities that a "true love" is reciprocal. But I've never considered "love" like something to avoid being just suffering, pain and fears. At the opposite I do believe that this feeling could have a positive meaning if only some people would be able to accept it like it comes, without looking at it like a cancer.
Let's take Madame Bovary: she commits suicide because of too many failures. Her castles in the air are all fallen down. Her lovers have all abandoned her. Emma has always misunderstood what love should be, pretending to find romanticism in the worst and less romantic men around her while leaving behind the only one who really loved her.