I read this story based solely on praise I had heard for Krakauer's work - About 10 pages in, realizing fully what the book was about I was alternatin...moreI read this story based solely on praise I had heard for Krakauer's work - About 10 pages in, realizing fully what the book was about I was alternating between scoffing and eye-rolling at the selfishness and ridiculousness of what this child had done. Coming from this initial reaction, the fact that I ended up enjoy this book so damn much is a major testament to John Krakauer's talent as a storyteller. I'll be damned if this crafty motherfucker didn't win me over.
Do I think what this spoilt kid did was epic and the stuff of legends? No. Did this authour make me remember the sweeping and all-encompassing passions of being in your late teens/early twenties that make you do stupid things and not listen to any of the common sense advice from those wiser than you? Yes, yes he did. Did I learn a little about myself from reading this book? Well sure. The real hero from this story isn't an impetuous child who's been immortalized for his recklessness, like so many before (and surely many after him.) It's the author who helped make readers judge not, lest they be judged. (less)
This book was terrible in the same way that Blindness was terrible - it was such perfectly described horror that it was overwhelming my mind and I jus...moreThis book was terrible in the same way that Blindness was terrible - it was such perfectly described horror that it was overwhelming my mind and I just wanted it to end(less)
When I finished this book, all I could do in reaction was stand up and immediately place it back on the bookshelf. I read the last third of this novel...moreWhen I finished this book, all I could do in reaction was stand up and immediately place it back on the bookshelf. I read the last third of this novel as fast as I could not because it was poorly written or boring, in fact this is one of the most beautifully written novels I have ever read. I rushed through this story because I had to get out of the world that Saramago had shown me as quickly as I possibly could. Partially because it was so horrifying but mainly because it was so plausible. That people would become like dogs, lost in whiteness, made me feel the panic of being suddenly lost without sight. It's a testament to how good this novel is that it is able to evoke such panic. (less)
I read this book when I was 16 and still vividly remember scenes of it, and actually have a visual picture of them. That's how beautifully written thi...moreI read this book when I was 16 and still vividly remember scenes of it, and actually have a visual picture of them. That's how beautifully written this novel is.(less)
I am torn with the Emily series. I know most LM Montgomery fans consider these books to be her best, the closest she came to a more dark, realistic na...moreI am torn with the Emily series. I know most LM Montgomery fans consider these books to be her best, the closest she came to a more dark, realistic narrative that has a lot of her own life in it. I personally think that she wrote more gothic stories than this, and that those stories were better executed than the Emily books (the short story collection 'Amoung the Shadows' would be the best example of this.)
To be completely truthful though the main thing that turns me away from the Emily series is the twp male love interest characters. Gilbert Blythe is one of LM Montgomery's strongest male characters because he is 1) believably male, not a dreamy, unrealistic image of what a young girl thinks a boy love interest should be and 2) is equal to Anne in his drive and spirit. Teddy Kent is barely a character. He's more of a concept, a conceit. The attempts to explain his motivations, the characterizations of him, everything she puts together to form this character fall flat. He comes off as two dimensional, without his own drives and passions. He's more of a worshiper of Emily than a character himself.
In contrast, Dean Priest blazes through this story with a fierceness that demands your attention. He is very obviously LM Montgomery's attempt at a Mr Rochester, and the flawed, angry, intelligence in his character captures even when seeing him through Emily's eyes. This is where LM Montgomery fails her audience - her need to moralize the actions and decisions of all her female lead characters drives Emily to be with Teddy, barely visible, and to push away the dark, challenging, father-figure of a lover in Dean Priest. The flaw of this makes these books almost unreadable for me. (less)
I have a lot of thoughts about this book. I think Palahniuk owes David Fincher a lot - this book wouldn't have its place in pop culture's lexicon if i...moreI have a lot of thoughts about this book. I think Palahniuk owes David Fincher a lot - this book wouldn't have its place in pop culture's lexicon if it wasn't for Fincher's film. The book itself is weak, thin. The movie, the script, and the actors that fleshed out the weak characters from this novel are what made this book what it is today. The book is a gathering of facts and exaggerated boy-stories, it reads like a Maxim magazine. It also makes a lot of assumptions about class and gender. But all this is just fodder to the main point that kept hitting me over the head while I read, which was "THIS IS THE GAYEST BOOK I HAVE EVER SEEN" and this is coming from someone who used to regularly thumb through the Tom of Finland anthology from Taschen. The subtext of this book is so blatant it's not subtext anymore. It's like a gay porn that's put in the straight section. I don't know what exactly the author is trying to achieve here - the ability to have sexual contact with other men without condemnation or guilt, I suppose. Whatever it is, I would say the biggest auidence this book would appeal to, and who I would most recommend it to over all is anyone who has a fetish for straight men fucking each other. (less)