John Eich's Reviews > The Rural Life

The Rural Life by Verlyn Klinkenborg
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's review
Sep 10, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: partially-read
Read from May 01 to September 10, 2011

Ok, I couldn't resist a book with "luminous" quoted on the front from the NYTimes. I just never realized that luminous prose is not enough to hold my interest.

The descriptions, metaphors and elegant word-craft are lovely. In fact, it's probably one of the most artfully written books I've ever read. What it lacks, for me, is a semblance of plot. I'm not sure if I'm just not in the mood for a memoir, or I'm hopelessly addicted to fiction, but I just can't stay motivated to keep reading this. I'm, sadly...bored.

Perhaps, if I give it another shot, I'll find that the story of this man's rural life will finally start to hold some meaning larger than a beautifully written diary. But a chronological rendering of glimpses of the outdoor world (the weather, the farm's changing condition, the animals' antics) is just not doing it for me, however wonderfully these glimpses are written. I guess in a memoir there might not be a plot, but at least a philosophical/emotional/spiritual growth pattern would lend a sense of movement toward a goal - provide a justification for the arrangement of chapters, other than "well, it happened in that order."
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05/09 page 33
04/27 marked as: read

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