Kris McCracken's Reviews > Diary Of A Bad Year

Diary Of A Bad Year by J.M. Coetzee
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it was ok

An interesting enough experiment, albeit very tricky to read. Ostensibly a collection of political essays and commentaries on Australian politics in the early naughties (although they do shift towards more personal musings in the final third) by an ageing expatriate South African author.

However, underneath this - at the bottom third of each page - we have a running interior monologue (mostly unrelated to the above) of said author.

To complicate matters, underneath THIS - the bottom fifth of each page - we have the running interior monologue of the woman who has been roped in to transcribe the author's musings (the top two thirds) for his German publisher.

Sounds straightforward?

As an experiment, it is largely successful in the way that it explores the relationship that develops between the two characters, ultimately leading to evolutions in both their worldviews. That said, it can be a bugger to read, with lots of flipping back and forth between pages to try and piece together the narrative arc.
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Reading Progress

September 2, 2015 – Started Reading
September 2, 2015 – Shelved
September 2, 2015 –
page 36
20.22%
September 5, 2015 –
page 85
47.75%
September 7, 2015 –
page 165
92.7%
September 10, 2015 – Finished Reading

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