Taka's Reviews > Austerlitz

Austerlitz by W.G. Sebald
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Jan 21, 10

bookshelves: japan_jul07-aug11, german_lit
Read from January 17 to 21, 2010

I don't get it--

This book came highly recommended to me by two of my good friends and I only had the highest expectations for it. As I browsed through the book - as I do everytime before I plunge into any book - I saw the photographs, the 1.5-line-spacing, and the lack of any discernible paragraph.

Okay, I said to myself, this must be quite an experience.

And so I began the days of self-torture.

The first one hundred, maybe one hundred fifty, pages is dull to the hundredth degree, punctuated with a few gems of remarks that may be somewhat cool to quote on Facebook or your blog, the middle portion has the story flare up just enough for you to expect it to finally take off and soar into the incredible heights of literary genius, only to have you hopes dashed as the story comes crushing down by page 190, and the last one hundred and eight pages constitutes the slow decline into veritable death with sentences rambling on, not unlike this, by turns reminiscent of Faulkner in his awful masterpiece, Absalom! Absalom! especially in the use of superbly annoying dependent clauses enclosed pedantically and faithfully within commas, in apparent imitation of, among others, memories, in their pale, ghost-like form, being recalled and, as the Reviewer guesses, slowly forgotten.

Conclusion: not my cuppa tea.

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