Stefani's Reviews > Heart of Darkness

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
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Jun 30, 10

bookshelves: africa, exotic-travel, humanity-is-scary

I've always dreamt of traveling to exotic and far-flung locales like the Congo but realize, that with my various anxieties, phobias, and general distrust of germs and tropical diseases, the possibility of me traveling to these places and overcoming said anxieties in the process is slim to none. For my vicarious wanderlust to be satisfied, I depend on the novels written by those more adventurous than myself-it's like the equivalent of reading a Harlequin romance if you're sexually depraved I suppose.

Anyway, given my expectations of what a travel book should be like-detailing every moment of travel including sights, smells, sounds, textures, etc..-this was not it. I'm kind of obsessed with books about Africa and my hope is always the the author will give me some new insight or describe an experience that I haven't read about before, leading me to (falsely) believe that I have overcome my fears and hitched the next plane to Kenya.

I knew it wasn't a straight-up travel log, there were all sorts of profound themes woven throughout including some pretty major themes of colonialism, man's innate evil, etc...I sensed that a lot of it was repetitive and, at the risk of sounding like some uneducated cretin, I didn't find it all that interesting. The narrative was boring, I don't really think I like sea-faring novels (although I'm still willing to give Moby Dick a go), and, for the love of God, if Conrad used the phrase "heart of darkness" one more time, I was going to stab myself with a rusty screwdriver. Did they not have thesaurus's in the early 1900's?

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