fiction files redux discussion

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Authors > Cien Años De Soledad (was "I Seem To Have A Reader's Block")

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message 1: by Ben, uneasy in a position of power; a yorkshire pudding (new)

Ben Loory | 241 comments Mod
when it comes to 100 years of solitude.

i just don't want to do it. even though the first sentence is so great!

not sure what the problem is.

such an interesting post!


message 2: by Brian, just a child's imagination (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
i've got that book. i think it's the 100 years part that scares me. i kind of feel it may take that long to read and i frankly don't think i can spare a 100 years. but if you want, i'll yank it off the shelf and give it a go. my reading fate is now in your hands.


message 3: by Brian, just a child's imagination (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
and as a plutonian-certifier i can delete, edit, close this post so that no one else can post on it or move it to the top to indicate just how important this post is. the power is tremendous. in fact i think i'll move it to the top right now.


message 4: by Ben, uneasy in a position of power; a yorkshire pudding (new)

Ben Loory | 241 comments Mod
wow, i never thought of that, but maybe subconsciously i just don't want to be alone that long! :D

i'm laughing but it's not really a joke. cuz i can't really explain it otherwise. i've actually bought and sold multiple copies of this book over the years, as i realized i was never going to read it and then decided i should again, etc...

anyway, thanks for the offer of help, brian, but i can't take you up on it right now... first i have to read this 800 book about charles dickens... and then something "funny"... but maybe in the next batch of 10 we'll see what happens...


message 5: by Brian, just a child's imagination (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
whew... that was close. thought for a minute i would have to read it.


message 6: by Ben, uneasy in a position of power; a yorkshire pudding (new)

Ben Loory | 241 comments Mod
me too... you scared me!


message 7: by Maureen, mo-nemclature (new)

Maureen (modusa) | 683 comments Mod
Ben wrote: "when it comes to 100 years of solitude.

i just don't want to do it. even though the first sentence is so great!

not sure what the problem is.

such an interesting post!"


i think it is an interesting post actually. book-specfic reader's block? i had underworld for years and gave it away, never reading it. don't know why -- haven't read any delillo..


message 8: by Maureen, mo-nemclature (new)

Maureen (modusa) | 683 comments Mod
hey plutonian certifier brian:

i made ben a moderator to see if the post title would change but it didn't. it may be that he needs a title of his own... hint hint. first one who finds the way to change ben's title will be the first moderator to change ben's title!




message 9: by Brian, just a child's imagination (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
"i think it is an interesting post actually. book-specfic reader's block? i had underworld for years and gave it away, never reading it. don't know why -- haven't read any delillo.."

I've got a bunch of delillo. i don't know why. never read him either but some of his books have nice covers so i buy them. should we try to read one some time? underworld is too big for me right now.

the post title can easily be edited. are you talking about his title as moderator? ubik has me a bit fuddle-minded at the moment.


message 10: by Dan, deadpan man (new)

Dan | 641 comments Mod
i have only read Americana which seemed a lot like a Brett Easton Ellis story or rather Brett Easton Ellis writes in a similar vein as De Lillo.

Actually I did read the opening chapter to Underworld a while back which is about a baseball game. in fact it was really cool but i never read anything further. i don't know why.


message 11: by Dan, deadpan man (new)

Dan | 641 comments Mod
i hope you are feeling better Mo!


message 12: by Ben, uneasy in a position of power; a yorkshire pudding (new)

Ben Loory | 241 comments Mod
i have read a lot of delillo and in my opinion there is no reason to read him. the "opening chapter to underworld," "pafko at the bat," was actually written and published years before the novel as a stand-alone story; he then appended the completely unrelated novel underworld onto it and tried to act like they were one thing. which they aren't; pafko is really brilliant and then the novel itself is a dreary piece of crap about totally different people in a totally different time period. people who like thomas pynchon tend to like white noise but i didn't think it was anything special. the one i did like was libra, which was about lee harvey oswald, and seemed like maybe it was the basis for the oliver stone movie jfk, although i guess it wasn't. i read some others too but i can't remember which ones. oh, mao II, that was just a waste of time, i don't even remember what it was about. a kidnapping? somebody joins a cult? i don't know.

anyway... yeah... i'm really not impressed at all by delillo. he seems to be writing for humorless middle-aged intellectuals who don't like to exercise their imaginations.


message 13: by Dan, deadpan man (new)

Dan | 641 comments Mod
Oh, well in that case I have read the best part of underworld already. also odd that he would throw the two together as they are unrelated. I did know that it was published seperately but i for whatever reason thought it was done after the publication of underworld.

Libra sounds like it could be interesting but I have plenty of other books to get through before purchasing another Dellilo book.


message 14: by Ben, uneasy in a position of power; a yorkshire pudding (new)

Ben Loory | 241 comments Mod
pafko was published separately in book form after underworld, but it was published as a short story in i believe the new yorker years before the novel was begun. i think it was expanded some for the book.

and i suppose it is somehow thematically related to the book that follows, but i'll be damned if i know how. that book was so godawful boring, i'll never know why it is so well-regarded.


message 15: by Brian, just a child's imagination (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
well damn ben... put a damper on my enthusiasm. after finishing ubik i fondled quite a few books in my little library and threw a delillo in my work bag (man bag). so here i am about to go out and get some coffee and indian treats for breakfast with a copy of cosmopolis. the plot summary reminded me of bonfire of the vanities, a book i enjoyed though i felt a tad or a few tads too long. cosmo is short. we'll see how delillo goes.


message 16: by Kerry, flame-haired janeite (new)

Kerry Dunn (kerryanndunn) | 887 comments Mod
Hello all, I'm here! I love everyone's titles! They are all so. . .perfect!

I have also not read 100 Years of Solitude. I started it once but gave up after only a few pages. It sits on my bookshelf (well it used to sit on my bookshelf, now it's packed away in a box in the garage until we find a permanent dwelling) and kind of waves its blue colored spine at me and says, "Kerry, pick me up! Try again! Your best friend says I'm her favorite book of all time! Isn't that praise enough to get you to read me?" and I wave back at it and say, "Meh, maybe later."


message 17: by Kerry, flame-haired janeite (new)

Kerry Dunn (kerryanndunn) | 887 comments Mod
Wow my profile picture here is a really old one. My hair is long.


message 18: by Shel, ad astra per aspera (new)

Shel (shelbybower) | 946 comments Mod
This seems too coincidental.

I just started reading this in a bar tonight.

I was interrupted by people who seemed not to believe I was capable of reading such a book.

And indeed, I was not, in a bar, being interrupted.

Hm. I sense a discussion coming on. Anyone read it before who might be able to help guide? Like... how to break it down, etc.? I've read Love in the Time of Cholera, but haven't read Solitude since college... Latin American Lit class...


message 19: by Dan, deadpan man (new)

Dan | 641 comments Mod
I have this one sitting around somewhere I have only read the tristes putas one. I think I chose it because it was so short!




message 20: by Jennifer, hot tamale (new)

Jennifer | 141 comments Mod
yep. i've got it too. it was a gift. just haven't gotten around to it.


message 21: by Brian, just a child's imagination (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
seems we all have the 100 year book but not many of us have read it... interesting... should we all just maybe tackle a few years and meet later?


message 22: by Shel, ad astra per aspera (new)

Shel (shelbybower) | 946 comments Mod
I don't wanna jump the polling on group reads but I will look into whether or not there are some conventions we might use (breaking up into certain sections, etc.) that would be handy in a discussion.

I seem to recall some amount of structure when I read the book for a class, because there is a lot to the book.


message 23: by Maureen, mo-nemclature (new)

Maureen (modusa) | 683 comments Mod
Shelby wrote: "I don't wanna jump the polling on group reads but I will look into whether or not there are some conventions we might use (breaking up into certain sections, etc.) that would be handy in a discussi..."

hey, i think if people just want to read a book together, they should. not everything has to be a group read. surely if they see a topic there, they can just say, hey! me too. that said, i'm not sure these people saying they have a copy of 100 years of solitude are actually saying they want to read it too. maybe you do a poll that is "do you really want to read 100 years of solitude? and when?" :)


message 24: by Alan (last edited Mar 06, 2009 05:24PM) (new)

Alan Prevallet (steelydan) | 12 comments Ben wrote: "i have read a lot of delillo and in my opinion there is no reason to read him. the "opening chapter to underworld," "pafko at the bat," was actually written and published years before the novel as ..."

I'm glad you feel this way, Ben. After "Pafko at the Bat" I lost interest with Underworld. I couldn't get through Crash either. I think it's the lack of humor and...enthusiasm?

Anyway, I need to read 100 Years too so let's get on this thing one way or another. I haven't participated in a group reading yet and I ache for it in my thyroids.


message 25: by Dan, deadpan man (new)

Dan | 641 comments Mod
First of all why do you have a crazy ass picture of me as your profile pic? Second I think that you are thinking of Ballard's Crash. I don't think (and correct me if i am wrong) that delillo has a book titled that.

Also you might want to get your thyroid checked.


message 26: by Dan, deadpan man (new)

Dan | 641 comments Mod
Also, did you cut me out of that picture and add a different background? my face looks all deformed!


message 27: by Jonathan, the skipper (new)

Jonathan | 609 comments Mod
Alan wrote: "Ben wrote: "i have read a lot of delillo and in my opinion there is no reason to read him. the "opening chapter to underworld," "pafko at the bat," was actually written and published years before t..."

. . . so wait a minute, alan, do you have a crush on woogie, or something? . . . i could see myself being a woogie groupie . . .


message 28: by Patrick, photographic eye (new)

Patrick | 133 comments Mod
i just gave away another copy of underworld. i doubt i'll ever read it. the little delillo i've read has always left me a bit frustrated and underwhelmed... or frustratingly underwhelmed. except for, the names, maybe... that had me hooked for a while... but now i can't remember a thing about it.

where does one get a crazy ass picture of woogie? i'd like a fresh profile pic.


message 29: by Kerry, flame-haired janeite (new)

Kerry Dunn (kerryanndunn) | 887 comments Mod
JE, we all have mad crushes on Woogie, didn't you know?


message 30: by Brian, just a child's imagination (last edited Mar 08, 2009 04:10AM) (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
Ben wrote: "i have read a lot of delillo and in my opinion there is no reason to read him. the "opening chapter to underworld," "pafko at the bat," was actually written and published years before the novel as ..."

Ben... I'm curious. Have you read Cosmopolis by DeLillo? I thought it was pretty damn good. Interesting, witty, surreal... and short! It's a downward spiral of a Master of the Universe kind of guy and it all takes place in one day. The peripheral characters were good. The main character was an ass, but an interesting ass.

Now I'm reading Hell by some Japanese guy... I love the easy ability to link to books here.


message 31: by Ben, uneasy in a position of power; a yorkshire pudding (new)

Ben Loory | 241 comments Mod
no brian, haven't read cosmopolis. how do you link to books? interesting, witty, surreal, and especially short sounds good. doesn't sound at all like underworld!


message 32: by Debbie (new)

Debbie (nerdygirlshops) | 7 comments I too have a copy of 100 years residing on my bookshelf...well, I think its in a box at the moment since I'm getting ready to move again...but I've never read it either. I actually read Memories of My Melancholy Whores some time ago, and really liked it.

I read White Noise a few years ago, but fought through it. I was so bored by the time I finished it that I had no idea what it was about. No more DeLillo for me!




message 33: by Shel, ad astra per aspera (new)

Shel (shelbybower) | 946 comments Mod
Ben wrote: "no brian, haven't read cosmopolis. how do you link to books? interesting, witty, surreal, and especially short sounds good. doesn't sound at all like underworld!"

When you add a comment, there's a little link that says "add book/author" and you can link to the title or add the cover.

Very handy. Much easier than finding it on Amazon, copying the link and a href'ing it.


message 34: by Ben, uneasy in a position of power; a yorkshire pudding (new)

Ben Loory | 241 comments Mod
oh WOW!! Rogue Moon! The Genocides!! The Walking Shadow!!!

that's awesome. this place rules.


message 35: by Alex (last edited Mar 09, 2009 01:04AM) (new)

Alex | 11 comments Yes, I've enjoyed starting and not finishing several of DeLillo's books. I begin in good faith and with high expectations, but I don't have the stamina to push on through the clever pop references, which may not be pointless. Maybe I'm just not ready to appreciate him. About ten years ago, I saw his play The Day Room, and I enjoyed it. I think the play was about not bringing expectations to this play. I also have never gotten very far with 100 Years....


message 36: by Lara (new)

Lara (laramonster) | 146 comments Mod
All you guys who haven't picked up 100 years, please do. You'll be so glad you did. It really is a masterpiece. I've read it three times, once in Spanish and the other times in English, and there are fantastic scenes and images in there that will stay with me forever. It's a phenomenal piece of work with the best opening line ever.

Haven't read any DeLillo. Doesn't appeal too much right now. Maybe one day.

As for reader's block, I've had that for about two years now, reading about a whopping 4 books in that time. It's been a horrible drought, but hopefully books will rain down on me now!


message 37: by Michael, the Olddad (new)

Michael (olddad) | 255 comments Mod
Lara wrote: "All you guys who haven't picked up 100 years, please do. You'll be so glad you did. It really is a masterpiece. I've read it three times, once in Spanish and the other times in English, and there a..."

I'll 2nd Lara on this. 100 Years has stuck with me like glue ever since I read it. There is the episode where the village gets insomnia and begins losing their collective memory. When they awake from the disease (fall asleep?) they discover the village is covered in post-it notes; literally everything is labeled so that they don't forget it, with sub-labels explaining the labels, etc. Just one great episode of many many.

As for Delillo; just finally got around to readingWhite Noise last fall. The whole toxic cloud event was great, clearly the best part of the story, but I did detect more than a bit of whining that I couldn't shake, and I am not a huge fan so far.

mm


message 38: by Ben, uneasy in a position of power; a yorkshire pudding (new)

Ben Loory | 241 comments Mod
Michael wrote: "I'll 2nd Lara on this. 100 Years has stuck with me like glue ever since I read it. There is the episode where the village gets insomnia and begins losing their collective memory. When they awake from the disease (fall asleep?) they discover the village is covered in post-it notes; literally everything is labeled so that they don't forget it, with sub-labels explaining the labels, etc. Just one great episode of many many."

wow.... looks like i might have to read it after all!

and also... call me crazy, but... when you said "Hugh The Moderator" in that other thread, was there a "John The Revelator" hidden behind that? or do i just listen to too much old timey gospel and blues?




message 39: by Debbie (new)

Debbie (nerdygirlshops) | 7 comments Lara wrote: "All you guys who haven't picked up 100 years, please do. You'll be so glad you did. It really is a masterpiece. I've read it three times, once in Spanish and the other times in English, and there a..."

damn you, Lara...now I HAVE to read it this summer. :D


message 40: by Abi (new)

Abi 100 Years of Solitude is one of the best books I've ever read. I read it in first year because my room-mate did and she kept reading me bizarre extracts (Remedios the Beauty floating away with the washing, etc). It was my first brush with magical realism, startling and enchanting. I wrote an essay on it last semester (with Rushdie's Midnight's Children and Halldor Laxness' Under the Glacier') entitled 'Magical Realism, History and National Identity' so I've mainly considered it from that sort of angle, and also in terms of a Proustian consideration of time. Because apparently having read A la recherche du temps perdu, everything makes me think of it. Possibly this effect will subside in time.


message 41: by Dan, deadpan man (new)

Dan | 641 comments Mod
Ok, this is ridiculous. I said that I didn't have time to read it and I guess that is still true with Infinite Jest on deck along with the short story thing but now I think I really wanna read it thanks to all these comments.

A whole village with insomnia?! Post-it notes!?!

I don't even have a job right now and there is getting to be too much reading to be done! Arrgh!


message 42: by Brian, just a child's imagination (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
after reading lara's and michael's and abi's input on this 100 years of solitude, i may have to flip-flop on my thinking and yank that book off of my shelf and into my hands pronto!


message 43: by Shel, ad astra per aspera (new)

Shel (shelbybower) | 946 comments Mod
So change yer votes, then I can get a tally and add a group read. And we should agree on when to start, too.


message 44: by Michael, the Olddad (last edited Mar 09, 2009 07:47PM) (new)

Michael (olddad) | 255 comments Mod
'cuse me. I'm just trying to see if I can force One Hundred Years of Solitude into the "books mentioned" column to the right. Carry on...


message 45: by Brian, just a child's imagination (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
no problem mm... but me thinks this book may end up with its own thread soon thanks to the likes of you.


message 46: by Michael, the Olddad (last edited Mar 09, 2009 07:57PM) (new)

Michael (olddad) | 255 comments Mod
Nevermind me, just playing. Talk amongst yourselves...







message 47: by Michael, the Olddad (last edited Mar 09, 2009 08:05PM) (new)

Michael (olddad) | 255 comments Mod
Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, General Aureliano Buendia was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.
One Hundred Years of Solitude - opening words of novel

At that time Macondo was a village of twenty adobe houses, built on the bank of a river of clear water that ran along a bed of polished stones, which were white and enormous, like prehistoric eggs. The world was so recent that many things lacked names, and in order to indicate them it was necessary to point.
One Hundred Years of Solitude

It was as if God had decided to put to the test every capacity for surprise and was keeping the inhabitants of Macondo in a permanent alternation between excitement and disappointment, doubt and revelation, to such an extreme that no one knew for certain where the limits of reality lay. It was an intricate stew of truths and mirages that convulsed the ghost of José Arcadio Buendía with impatience and made him wander all through the house even in broad daylight.
One Hundred Years of Solitude

The only difference today between Liberals and Conservatives is that the Liberals go to mass at five o'clock and the Conservatives at eight.
One Hundred Years of Solitude

The world must be all fucked up when men travel first class and literature goes as freight.
One Hundred Years of Solitude

Carmelia Montiel, a twenty-year-old virgin, had just bathed in orange-blossom water and was strewing rosemary leaves on Pilar Ternera's bed when the shot rang out. Aureliano José had been destined to find with her the happiness that Amaranta had denied him, to have seven children, and to die in her arms of old age, but the bullet that entered his back and shattered his chest had been directed by a wrong interpretation of the cards.
One Hundred Years of Solitude

He [Aureliano II :] had already understood that he would never leave that room, for it was foreseen that the city of mirrors (or mirages) would be wiped out by the wind and exiled from the memory of men at the precise moment when Aureliano Babilonia would finish deciphering the parchments, and that everything written on them was unrepeatable since time immemorial and forever more, because races condemned to one hundred years of solitude did not have a second opportunity on earth.
One Hundred Years of Solitude - last words of novel



message 48: by Brian, just a child's imagination (new)

Brian (banoo) | 346 comments Mod
mm... can you come out here and just read me the damn book? i've already changed my vote. what else can i do? read it?


message 49: by Alan (new)

Alan Prevallet (steelydan) | 12 comments Dan wrote: "Also, did you cut me out of that picture and add a different background? my face looks all deformed!"

No, that's really you, my friend. I did mean Ballard's Crash. Oops. Needless to say, I had the same dilemma with that one.




message 50: by Maureen, mo-nemclature (new)

Maureen (modusa) | 683 comments Mod
i don't need to change my vote! she said cryptically.


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