Glenn Mitchell's Reviews > 2666

2666 by Roberto Bolaño
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it was amazing

I have no idea how anyone could write a succinct review of this book, unless they hated it. That seems fitting considering Bolano's writing makes a mockery of brevity. In an age where every editor tells you to hack at your work until it's economical, I feel as though Bolano did us a great service by writing this final work. I gave it five stars even though it frustrated me at times. Sometimes I hated it. So, how does the rating make sense? I suppose I love the book now, in hindsight, regardless of how I felt about it at any time during the lengthy reading process. I feel as though I'm a better reader, writer and person because of 2666. That's an uncharacteristic statement for me to make but it's true. The book has its faults and in my opinion errors, but the genius is beyond doubt. There are sentences in this book that are devastating. Metaphorically, it's like a heavy weight boxing bout. At times slow and strategic, at other times it creates something like blood lust, and occasionally Bolano delivers a knockout blow that's so sudden and brutal that you sit there in shock for five minutes. The more you read, the greater your understanding of what he's trying to achieve. You also relax a bit and allow some of the humour to work its magic. Things that seem poorly paced or irrelevant or superfluous make more sense. I bought the book because of the reviews. 50 pages in, I was wondering what the hell I'd gotten myself into. But now I get it. Time to start digging through the Bolano catalogue.

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Reading Progress

November 10, 2019 – Started Reading
November 10, 2019 – Shelved
December 5, 2019 – Finished Reading

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