A.J. Howard's Reviews > Winesburg, Ohio

Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson
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Feb 19, 10

bookshelves: finished-in-2010, modern-library-100-novels, guilty-disappointments, short-stories, bookshelf-fiction
Read from February 13 to 20, 2010

Every time I picked up Winesberg, Ohio I started thinking of the Tom Waits song "Johnsburg, Illinois" off the album Swordfishtrombones. The two works really have nothing in common besides the fact that they are relatively short, and their titles are small midwestern towns. I love that song though. There are moments of beauty in this book, but I think Waits is more beautiful in a minute in thirty five seconds. I know its not an unfair comparison, but it's how my mind works.

I find myself liking the book the more I think about it though. Some of the stories were really great, some of them didn't do a lot for me. I know people say that this Winesberg was a huge influence on American literature, which I suppose its true. I'm not really in a position to comment on that though. I haven't read a collection of short stories in ages, so I might be rusty to the form. For me, its one of those things where I enjoyed having finished the book more than the actual reading of the book. It really is quite lovely in retrospect.

Come to think of it, "Frank's Wild Years" would fit in quite well with the rest of the stories. "Never could stand that dog."
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