I had a copy of the Buddenbrooks sitting around for a year, and I couldn't quite psyche myself into reading it until some german playwright used it as...moreI had a copy of the Buddenbrooks sitting around for a year, and I couldn't quite psyche myself into reading it until some german playwright used it as an example in a lecture. It was a comment on the vein of "Thomas Mann in Buddenbrooks knows what he is talking about and whether he describes reunions or meals, if you have been to Lübeck, it was just like that." So this was the little kick that made me intiate the Buddenbrook challenge.
I find that Buddenbrooks has much in common with George Eliot's writing, and even with Henry Fielding (although it is not so humorous). I like XIX century literature that is able to develop an interesting plot, in this case a family saga, and at the same time make remarks about politics, art, life, through each one of the characters and the narrator. This kind of comentary is what makes interesting novels that range the 600-1000 pages, and as the playwright I mentioned before said (I think), give a feeling of authenticity. (less)
When I read the story of Clay Whats-his-last-name and his L.A. buddies I think of The Great Gatsby. No surprise because they are both a sort of satiri...moreWhen I read the story of Clay Whats-his-last-name and his L.A. buddies I think of The Great Gatsby. No surprise because they are both a sort of satirical, depiction of lifestyles decades apart; yet somehow similar. This would be a very general likeness, I could go on talking about the common elemets the two books have for me: the importance of billboards and their text or images (Elvis billboard and Dr. Don't-remember-his-name with the big eyes billboard); the detachment of the narrator; Running over things with cars. But I'm not too sure about it.
Instead I'll say that I liked the setting of this novel. First of all Clay lives in Mulholland, refrences to this hills where brought to me first by the David Lynch's movie of the same name. So whenever they mentioned Mullholland Dr. I could not help picturing Laura Harring walking down the hill after a car accident, or picturing her house with a pool, or Winkie's. Whatever novel has this setting is worth a reading.(less)
At the same time I read this book I was engaged with Yates study about The Occult Philosophy in the Elizabethan Age, thus reading a book which made co...moreAt the same time I read this book I was engaged with Yates study about The Occult Philosophy in the Elizabethan Age, thus reading a book which made constant references to Fludd, and the Rosicrucians (to whom Yates devotes one chapter). I had already noticed that this whole Occult philosophy was related to some of Borges' short stories too. The pendragon legend has for me some similarities with Borges' stories in the mockery of the academic lifestyle, of certain stereotypes and of the detectivesque plot.
How many times did the author manage to mention the names of Shakespeare and Milton. That alone made me sympathize with Dr. Batky, but there is also the fact that he sounds so much like Borges' characters, who, taking themselves not very seriously witness the most amazing miracles or ancient secrets or are bafled by these misteries. Probably Szerb just like Borges has a deep longing for ancient knowledge but just as their characters can bring themselves to consider them seriously, thus the mock tone and ironic remarks which are everywhere.
One the other hand I hated that Szerb uses one of the strongest prejudices against occult philosophy: black magic. Oh well, nothing is perfect. (less)
Porno is a pretty decent sequel, where Trainspotting was a bit dark and a bit depriment Porno is lighter and funnier. The characters from the first bo...morePorno is a pretty decent sequel, where Trainspotting was a bit dark and a bit depriment Porno is lighter and funnier. The characters from the first book have grown up and turned into something else. New characters show up but they are not so interesting (Juice Terry and Nikki being the exception). I don’t know if I read the novel because it is interesting in its own right or just because of my enormous need of another fix from the guys: Renton, Sickboy, Spud and even the old Begbie. I don’t think it matters, if it’s the same foryou, you will read it, if not… well ¿How interested are you in the film industry? Because its also about that, kind of.
Stray comments - The starry heavens above me, the moral law between. - I Read it in spanish. (less)
Para mi leer cuentos es más dificil que leer novelas. Es más fácil que abandone la lectura. A menos que se trate de Borges.
Mi cuento favorito fue "Las...morePara mi leer cuentos es más dificil que leer novelas. Es más fácil que abandone la lectura. A menos que se trate de Borges.
Mi cuento favorito fue "Las ménades" porque cortazar crea un personaje un poco snob y por la referencia a Ovidio.
La portada es un caracol. "Axolotl" y "continuidad de los parques" comparten una estructura que asemeja a este caracol. a narración sería esta espiral o tunel del caracol y al final del cuento llega a un punto que comparte un elemento con el principio. En una especie de ciclo. Al final, no se está exactamente en el mismo lugar que al principio. Es una nueva situación, que es casi la del inicio. (less)