Erika Jo 's Reviews > The Name of the Rose

The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
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's review
May 18, 2007

really liked it

I became addicted to this book like crackmonasticicane. What I mean is, large chunks of medieval Papist theology notwithstanding, this book was responsible for a renewed passion for long novels.

I picked up this book for a medium lame reason - it is THE ECO, MASTER OF SEMIOTICS. Plus I wanted to impress my old professors. Just kidding. Sort of.

One frustrating aspect about this book is the translation from the Italian, although I believe I read the definitive English edition. Clauses like "he moved rapidly across the garden" were grating for me at first, used to poetry which is concise and explicit. Did he run? Frolic? Caper? Gambol? But I slowly began to like its slow ambiguity, the tone echoed the ancient Biblical discursive texts which were at the center of the novel.

I stayed in at least twice on weekends to read it. It is ultimately a murder mystery, almost (gasp) of the Dan Brown persuasion. I don't feel particularly more knowledgeable about linguistical signs. But it did tease out a pleasurable, gratifying reading experience, after a bumpy start.
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