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The Underground Railroad
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2017 TOB -The Books > The Underground Railroad

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message 2: by jo (new) - rated it 3 stars

jo | 429 comments this book is a celebrity book. we all know this. am i the only one to think it is meh?


Michelle | 155 comments jo wrote: "this book is a celebrity book. we all know this. am i the only one to think it is meh?"

Jo,
Have you read Black Wave yet? If so how do you feel about the pairing?


lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments jo wrote: "this book is a celebrity book. we all know this. am i the only one to think it is meh?"

Hi jo. For me, it was a book where I had to overlook its flaws so that I could appreciate its greatness. Definitely for me it had greatness, but I could just as easily have focused on its flaws.


lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments Michelle wrote: "Have you read Black Wave yet? If so how do you feel about the pairing? "

Michelle, I felt sorry for Black Wave. It's so much better than I expected. The Underground Railroad v. Black Wave pairing reminded me of the way I felt about Bad Marie in a past TOB--a great book that I loved but because of its pairing (which I've since forgotten) it had little hope of getting past the first round.


Michelle | 155 comments poingu wrote: "jo wrote: "this book is a celebrity book. we all know this. am i the only one to think it is meh?"

Hi jo. For me, it was a book where I had to overlook its flaws so that I could appreciate its gre..."


Poingu
This is how I felt about it as well. As this is my first year reading the Tournament of Books, I am unfamiliar with the standard of how the winners in each bracket are chosen. It is based on how original or experimental the books are? The literary devices used? Or simply how the judge felt when they put the book down?
Also not familiar with the judge. Does anyone know anything about Kirstin Butler?


message 7: by lark (last edited Feb 10, 2017 03:05AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments Michelle wrote: "It is based on how original or experimental the books are? The literary devices used? Or simply how the judge felt when they put the book down?

All of the above! The practice of asking one judge to be responsible, a person who has absolute authority for the decision of which book to advance, combined with the random quality of the book choices themselves and how the brackets are seeded, leads to each judge pretty much making up their own standards and applying these as they will. The judges are asked to explain their decision in a short essay, but sometimes their choice is justified with something as simple as: "I liked this one better."


Ehrrin | 114 comments I loved this book, and found it to be incredibly heartbreaking. That said, I'm not totally sure I understand the device of making the"railroad" a railroad. For me, the power and beauty (and terror and brutal ugliness) was in the narratives of the individuals.

I don't think it changed anything for me to have the railroad be literal. And maybe even lost something in that translation? Anyone have thoughts about the why of this choice?


Alison Hardtmann (ridgewaygirl) | 444 comments Ehrrin wrote: "Anyone have thoughts about the why of this choice? ..."

Maybe to increase the feeling of unreality? It's an odd mix of the heartbreakingly realistic with the satirical/symbolic to which a more realistic escape method would upset the balance? Not to mention how it solves the problem of the hopping from state to state - how could that happen if she were on foot?


message 10: by jo (new) - rated it 3 stars

jo | 429 comments Michelle wrote: "Jo,
Have you read Black Wave yet? If so how do you feel about the pairing?"


not, have not read it yet. it's winding its way to me through the mail. but this book.... i don't know that i see flaws in it exactly, it's just that it's.... well it seems nothing more to me that a bit of a compendium of many slave narratives, plus some historical happenings that take place in the future (eugenic experiments, etc.). it's a historical mishmash, well told, but nothing too brilliant, or too worth getting excited about. i'll read Black Wave the moment it gets here.


message 11: by lark (last edited Feb 10, 2017 10:46AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments jo wrote: "i don't know that i see flaws in it exactly, it's just that it's.... well it seems nothing more to me that a bit of a compendium of many slave narratives, plus some historical happenings that take place in the future (eugenic experiments, etc.). it's a historical mishmash, well told, but nothing too brilliant, or too worth getting excited about.."

I was bothered at first by the mix of fiction and fact, because I thought having less than 100% commitment to verisimilitude when writing about slavery, even in something labeled "fiction," can open a door for readers to discount the almost unbelievably horrific and nonetheless true-to-life accounts of slavery that thread their way through this book.

For instance the description in the early chapters of re-captured slaves being tortured and killed is close to historically accurate, BUT having white enslavers enjoy a luncheon party while a man dies sadistically for their amusement seems to go too far and to make this scene more "a little bit fiction" and not "100% fact" and this in turn introduces a danger of casting doubt on the severity of the torture slaves endured, historically.

Also, the addition of completely ahistorical events in later chapters, where sympathetic whites are tortured and killed for helping escaped slaves, has the danger of adding to this confusion/discounting of the real torture enslaved people suffered.

BUT--here is what I think is happening. These things happened in another context quite regularly--Nazi Germany. Non-Jews across Europe watched Jews suffer and die and were indifferent or even entertained--documented fact. Sympathetic non-Jews risked their lives and suffered horrible torture and death when caught--also true.

So that I think is the crux of these additions Whitehead makes--he is linking slavery with National Socialism/The Final Solution. Creating links between slavery and the the Holocaust is a way of ripping through all the romantic veils of gone-with-the-wind revisionist fiction of the past 100 years and calling out slavery for what it was. It's a very interesting and brave experiment imo.


message 12: by Ruthiella (last edited Feb 10, 2017 11:58AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ruthiella | 329 comments My feeling was that The Underground Railroad was not intended to be a historical novel but an allegory for the figurative journey that black Americans have had to make since the founding of this country and the way white Americans have counteracted or facilitated that journey.

By making this an allegory instead of a straight narrative with factual detail, Whitehead is making the point that there is no end to this journey, no promised land. Because even when Cora makes it to the final chapter, life for her is still precarious and one can extrapolate this to the present day and affirm that this is true for many African-Americans now.

The legacy of American Slavery still taints us today and I think a lot of Americans have real trouble recognizing that.


Topher | 105 comments "BUT having white enslavers enjoy a luncheon party while a man dies sadistically for their amusement seems to go too far and to make this scene more "a little bit fiction" and not "100% fact""

You realize that families used to have barbecues and parties during lynchings, right? They sold postcards. It was a celebration.

And it happened literally decades after slavery ended.


message 14: by lark (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments Topher wrote: ""You realize that families used to have barbecues and parties during lynchings, right? They sold postcards. It was a celebration. ."

yes, gosh, i've seen the postcards. Even so I reacted to the scene in the book as hyperbolic. I have to think about that.

It's almost as if a fiction writer needs to put a soft lens on the truth to get people to believe it, whereas when something is sold as "non-fiction" e.g. no-novocaine dentistry in A Million Little Pieces, we tend to trust it no matter how implausible.


Nadine (nadinekc) | 495 comments Ruthiella wrote: "My feeling was that The Underground Railroad was not intended to be a historical novel but an allegory for the figurative journey that black Americans have had to make since the founding of this co..."

Yes, an allegory is a great way to look at it. An allegory with an element of alt-history surrealism.

As the novel went on, the physical railroad felt like a wormhole to me, rather than a thing or a place, and each stop was like opening a door to a bizarro-world alternate history that looked almost recognizable. I've read that Whitehead took elements of real historical events and mashed them up together, and I think that's what makes the events that occur along the railroad line seem both familiar and surreal.


Deborah (brandiec) | 113 comments jo wrote: "this book is a celebrity book. we all know this. am i the only one to think it is meh?"

You're not alone, jo; I gave it 3 stars, too, although I will now have to think about poingu's point on the analogy to Nazi Germany.


message 17: by jo (new) - rated it 3 stars

jo | 429 comments my complaint though, i'd like to reiterate, has nothing to do with historical overreach or some such. only on the fact that ultimately the book didn't say anything that hadn't already been said, poignantly, by very powerful slave narratives. is its value to introduce the slave-narrative genre to a public who is not familiar with it? so be it. but it's not a great book.


Laura Spaulding | 23 comments Ruthiella wrote: "My feeling was that The Underground Railroad was not intended to be a historical novel but an allegory for the figurative journey that black Americans have had to make since the founding of this co..."

EXACTLY!! This is why this book is so great and so important. It isn't just another novel about slavery.


message 19: by jo (new) - rated it 3 stars

jo | 429 comments wait. i hadn't read ruthiella's comment. yes, that is very smart. good point.


message 20: by Amy (new) - rated it 3 stars

Amy (asawatzky) | 1590 comments I'm with you Jo and was just working out how to explain myself. I gave respected UR more after reading interviews where Colson discussed making each stop an imaginary possibility... every region a different way that America could be responding to slavery and abolition... but I still feel that in making these imaginary, he takes away some of our responsibility; in other words, there were very real ways in which our history indicts us - creating imaginary ones let's people try to wiggle off the hook. Maybe the goal was to show the guilt across the nation where even the 'well-intentioned' states are corrupt, but I don't think he's successful if that's the case. In comparison, Gyasi doesn't have the narrative arc Colson gets through Cora with "Homegoing" but she manages to teach 300 years of incredibly indicting history through her fictional vignettes where I felt I learned something real. She succeeds at (to quote the Baldwin movie trailer) "the history of black America is the history of America" and it's not pretty.


Gayla Bassham (sophronisba) | 156 comments I read the book pretty much the way Ruthiella did -- although I don't think I could have articulated it as well! It made me think of Isabel Wilkerson's The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration, which is non-fiction set many years after slavery but has some of the same themes.


message 22: by Neighbors (last edited Feb 18, 2017 06:23PM) (new) - added it

Neighbors (neighbors73) | 69 comments I thought it was great. Not perfect, but like Ruthiella, I read it as an exploration of how the open violence of slavery morphed and changed. I think Americans like to tell ourselves that slavery ended and we all just moved forward, but the book points out that white antipathy towards blacks just morphs and changes shape. I though the chapters for South Carolina (eugenics), North Carolina (racial purging -- think Pacific Northwest and Oregon-- and lynching) and Indiana (rioting and destruction of black property--think Rosewood) were just chilling. I think the genius of the novel is that is connects the horrors of slavery to what came after rather, in both time and space, rather than just letting the reader approach slavery as history, something that happened in the past.

I actually flat out assumed that the dinner party described was based on an actual factual account. We know that white folks not only had family picnics at lynchings, but that there is plenty of evidence that the torturing and killing of slaves was also done openly. It bothered me as a scene because it read to me as both gruesome and sadly seemed quite probable given what I know of slavery's horrors.

I also am going to disagree with Poingu on where that arrow is pointing. I don't think it's about the Holocaust or fascism. I think it's pointing at mass incarceration, the dismantling of voting rights, police violence, the end of affirmative action, the Black Lives Matter movement, or whatever else you consider to be relevant about the current state of Black America. We can't understand where we are now without understanding our past. Or, as a guy named Angus Johnson said on Twitter, "American fascism isn't Hitler. American fascism is the Klan. American fascism is Jim Crow. American fascism is Bannon and Miller and Trump."


Katie | 127 comments I hopped over here after Gayla responded my mentioning The Warmth of Other Suns in the Homegoing thread. I also read the dinner party as literal - history tells us the abuse and killing of slaves happened as part of routine life on plantations.

Neighbors pretty much nailed how I read this book. It was painful and unrelenting in ways none of the other TOBs I've read this year are. That persistent pain, the unrelenting horrors persist today their forms have just changed (if only slightly mass incarceration and murder at the hands of the police aren't really all that different from a planation and a slave master).

This book felt important and timely but it was hard to read and I assume that was the point. I'm never great with symbolism and what things like a real railroad means. I tend to be a literal sort but it seemed to be the imaginary thing juxtaposed with the reality. The impossibility of their journey - which was incredible with this faux railroad but we all know the reality was far worse. Just as slavery was far worse than this novel's depiction or anything we can imagine....but symbolism has never been my strong suit.


message 24: by lark (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments Neighbors wrote: " I don't think it's about the Holocaust or fascism. I think it's pointing at mass incarceration, the dismantling of voting rights, police violence, the end of affirmative action, the Black Lives Matter movement, or whatever else you consider to be relevant about the current state of Black America. "

I want you to be right. I didn't get these resonances as I read it, but I can think back on my reading experience and see it there, esp. in the collapse of time in the book, where anachronisms can be read as an overarching message of "nothing has changed; nothing ever changes."


Gretchen (gretchena) | 7 comments For those who might still have this on the TBR pile. The BBC just announced a free audio stream:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08ff...


message 26: by [deleted user] (last edited Mar 15, 2017 06:42AM) (new)

Full disclosure: I was a history teacher for many years, during which I read hundreds of primary source accounts of slavery and The Underground Railroad. Unfair as it is, I couldn't help comparing this book to nonfiction accounts such as the slave narratives, Julius Lester's magnificent, To Be a Slave, Solomon Northrup's, Twelve Years a Slave, and Alex Haley's, Roots: The Saga of an American Family, both the book and the mini-series.

It is clear that Whitehead has read all of the books I mentioned and more, because the only original thing in his book is the literal railroad. Most of what happens to Cora and the other enslaved and escaped people is a retelling of familiar stories. There's nothing wrong with that, but coupled with a lack of character development, it left me feeling at a distance from the atrocities. Instead of vicariously experiencing Cora's fear and pain, I mostly watched it from afar.

EDIT: After reading this thread and the ToB commentariat, I've decided to reread UR before the second round. I feel certain that my preconceptions got in the way of understanding Colson's intentional construction of the book.


message 27: by lark (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments Tina wrote: "Instead of vicariously experiencing Cora's fear and pain, I mostly watched it from afar. ..."

Tina, why do you think the book did so well and was praised so highly?

My stab at answering my own question: it could be that Whitehead's writing is stylistically accessible, and corresponds with contemporary readers' preferences, vs. Roots, which now seems a little stylistically creaky, and definitely vs. 19th century slave narratives, which require a willingness to engage with a very different and sometimes opaque writing style.

One thing that can be said for The Underground Railroad is that it's readable.

I hate to contemplate though how quickly writing of the past gets to be challenging rather than best-seller-like.


message 28: by [deleted user] (new)

poingu wrote: "Tina, why do you think the book did so well and was praised so highly?"

It sold so well because...Oprah! The many accolades it has received, deservedly so, are likely because it is a serious, but highly readable book about a difficult topic, which happens to be in vogue. I liked this novel, but not as much as I hoped that I would.


message 29: by lark (last edited Feb 22, 2017 10:10AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments Tina wrote: "highly readable book about a difficult topic..."

hah, June just now posted a link in the newest litfic group to this very interesting article in the Millions about "readability" and present-day readers' attention spans and how these things affect judgments of literary merit--The Underground Railroad here is dissed for being too "readable"--

http://www.themillions.com/2017/02/ag...


message 30: by [deleted user] (last edited Feb 22, 2017 10:42AM) (new)

poingu wrote: "Tina wrote: "highly readable book about a difficult topic..."

hah, June just now posted a link in the newest litfic group to this very interesting article in the Millions about "readability" and p..."


Timely and interesting article. Thanks for the link. I think much of it is spot on, though—"too readable"—is that possible?


message 31: by AmberBug (last edited Feb 22, 2017 10:36AM) (new) - added it

AmberBug com* | 444 comments Ewww. That upsets me. I never understood the readability argument and it just seems like pompous bull. This gives a bad name to those of us who read literary fiction, and is exactly why many of the world thinks we hold our noses wayyy too high. Then again, I am sure there is the fair share of snobbery but why does it have to be locked into this genre and it's fans!??


message 32: by AmberBug (last edited Feb 22, 2017 10:41AM) (new) - added it

AmberBug com* | 444 comments THIS:

"“Readable” is quintessentially a term of praise for the middlebrow: fiction that aspires to the literary, but doesn’t make its reader try too hard. Fiction that you read to console yourself that you can still read a real book, or at least an approximation of one."

perfect example of that snobbery bull.

P.S. - Great article! Thank you for posting.


message 33: by Neighbors (last edited Feb 22, 2017 11:15AM) (new) - added it

Neighbors (neighbors73) | 69 comments Tina, I think the thing is that MANY readers don't know that they are real stories. I think folks think it's all exaggerated, that the details are too much, that there's no way slavery was that cruel.

In that way, the telling of these stories, regardless of genre, is important for a culture that has collectively decided to forget the cruelties of slavery.

I actually considered mining up the research to have ready-to-go at the ToB so I could deploy it as soon as someone said it was all too over the top, but I just decided that folks should do their own homework. Lol.


message 34: by lark (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments AmberBug wrote: "THIS:

"“Readable” is quintessentially a term of praise for the middlebrow: fiction that aspires to the literary, but doesn’t make its reader try too hard. Fiction that you read to console yoursel..."


yes, that's worth pushing back about--I'm not sure if "readable" isn't an asset and certainly literature doesn't have to be a chore to read.

otoh it's true that a lot of books are not read, or not published, because of being too difficult on some level, and I wonder if my own personal 'too difficult' measure is being lowered by the many distractions of our modern world.

There are quite a few masterpieces that I wouldn't have been able to get myself through if I hadn't 'read' them via audiobook, for example.

It could be the market is constricting literary fiction even more than before, where readers are insisting that novels be easily accessible, thus choking off the next Infinite Jest from ever being published in the future.


message 35: by lark (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments Neighbors wrote: "Tina, I think the thing is that MANY readers don't know that they are real stories. I think folks think it's all exaggerated, that the details are too much, that there's no way slavery was that cru..."

This happened to me, Neighbors, as I read it. Some parts of the novel I knew were not true-to-life, and knew were exaggerated, and this cast doubt for me on the veracity even of the true parts, notably the scene where a slave is tortured to death while the white gentry enjoys lunch...which sounded like hyperbole to me until Topher reminded me there is plenty of evidence well into the 20th century of white people attending lynchings as entertainment.


message 36: by lark (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments I have to say generally that this discussion is making me re-assess my extreme praise of this novel and my willingness to overlook its flaws.


message 37: by jo (new) - rated it 3 stars

jo | 429 comments i so agree with tina. whitehead put together all the slave narratives no one bothered to read, made the funread, and boom, everyone thought the book was amazing.


message 38: by Neighbors (last edited Feb 22, 2017 11:38AM) (new) - added it

Neighbors (neighbors73) | 69 comments So, I actually think there is tons to praise about this book. I think this book will generate awesome discussions--- the question of how historical research gets transposed into fiction is something I'm so interested in. I think it will actually pair nicely with Black Wave, where the narrator is deciding which parts of her life are interesting enough to become memoir-worthy.

It's honestly not all that often that any one reader is familiar enough with the source text to be able to do what Tina's done, which is identify the parts that come from historical research versus the imagination. It's only happened to me that clearly ONCE in my whole reading life! It was fascinating! I certainly don't think it's anything I'd hold against Whitehead.


Ruthiella | 329 comments I agree with Neighbors. I think it is important to remember that most people do not read as much as the members of this group and everyone’s education is going to be different even among those who do read a lot. I never read a slave narrative in high school or college. There are people in college or high school now whose only introduction to black history might be Colson Whitehead’s book. I agree that The Underground Railroad isn’t as original or amazing as say Beloved by Toni Morrison which really was a punch in the gut for me, but the stories are important (and relevant) enough to never stop being told

Also, just in my opinion, Homegoing is also just a re-tread of stories told by others before (Achebe, Baldwin, Haley, etc.) but put in a different format so it seems fresh and new. Personally The Underground Railroad and its allegorical format really worked for me where Homegoing did not.


message 40: by jo (new) - rated it 3 stars

jo | 429 comments Ruthiella wrote: "Also, just in my opinion, Homegoing is also just a re-tread of stories told by others before (Achebe, Baldwin, Haley, etc.) but put in a different format so it seems fresh and new. Personally The Underground Railroad and its allegorical format really worked for me where Homegoing did not."

i found Homegoing the better book because better storytelling. UR was meh for me. so i guess this is one of those occasions in which really it comes down to taste isn't it.


message 41: by Drew (new) - rated it 3 stars

Drew (drewlynn) | 416 comments AmberBug wrote: "THIS:

"“Readable” is quintessentially a term of praise for the middlebrow: fiction that aspires to the literary, but doesn’t make its reader try too hard. Fiction that you read to console yoursel..."


After participating in the ToB for several years and belonging to this group and others, I know the books I choose to read now are much more "difficult" than those I previously read. I'm not a very deep reader but I like a well-written book. That said, when I want to read something that's "just a story," I'm more likely to head over to the YA or children's section. Freddy the Detective, anyone?


message 42: by Drew (new) - rated it 3 stars

Drew (drewlynn) | 416 comments jo wrote: "i found Homegoing the better book because better storytelling. UR was meh for me. so i guess this is one of those occasions in which really it comes down to taste isn't it."

Me, too, Jo. While I do think UR is an important book, Homegoing was the one that gripped me emotionally. While I did care about Colson's characters, I was never able to make that emotional commitment.


message 43: by [deleted user] (last edited Feb 22, 2017 12:54PM) (new)

Neighbors wrote: "Tina, I think the thing is that MANY readers don't know that they are real stories. I think folks think it's all exaggerated, that the details are too much, that there's no way slavery was that cru..."

I completely agree with all of your points, and I think UR is worthy of all the praise and awards it has received. But for me, because of the background knowledge I brought to it, it was not the spectacular read many others found it to be.

EDIT: I want to add that I believe Whitehead intentionally created distance between the reader and Cora, maybe to make it easier to read so much ugliness. I wished for more connection to her, but my comments about that are meant to be observational and sharing my reading experience, not necessarily negative or dismissive of the novel. As many others have written, UR is an important book because it brings the harsh realities of slavery, and the struggle to escape from it, to a modern audience in an accessible way. These stories must continue to be retold forever, so I am glad that Whitehead wrote the book, that it was so well received, and that I read it. I still don't think it should take the Rooster! : )


message 44: by lark (new) - rated it 5 stars

lark benobi (larkbenobi) | 51 comments Drew wrote: "After participating in the ToB for several years and belonging to this group and others, I know the books I choose to read now are much more "difficult" than those I previously read. I'm not a very deep reader but I like a well-written book. That said, when I want to read something that's "just a story," I'm more likely to head over to the YA or children's section. Freddy the Detective, anyone? ."

Yep. Right now I'm loving Homer Price and Centerburg Tales: More Adventures of Homer Price, and my son has added about nine books by YA author William Sleator to my tbr pile.

But also I agree that my reading muscles have gotten stronger over the years of TOB reading.


Gayla Bassham (sophronisba) | 156 comments Tina wrote: " I believe Whitehead intentionally created distance between the reader and Cora, maybe to make it easier to read so much ugliness. I wished for more connection to her"

I think this is pretty typical of Whitehead's fiction in general; in my opinion, at least, it isn't specific to this book. I don't know if you've read The Intuitionist, but I think he creates the same kind of distance between the reader and the protagonist Lila Mae in that novel.


message 46: by [deleted user] (new)

Drew wrote: "Freddy the Detective, anyone?"

Thanks for sharing; that book looks delightful! I don't know how I missed this story in my youth, but I intend to correct that right away!


message 47: by [deleted user] (last edited Feb 22, 2017 01:17PM) (new)

Gayla wrote: "I think [creating distance between reader and protagonist] is pretty typical of Whitehead's fiction in general..."

I haven't read his other books. So, maybe the distance I felt was just his style of writing and not a conscious choice? That's actually kind of disappointing to me.


message 48: by Drew (new) - rated it 3 stars

Drew (drewlynn) | 416 comments Tina wrote: "Drew wrote: "Freddy the Detective, anyone?"

Thanks for sharing; that book looks delightful! I don't know how I missed this story in my youth, but I intend to correct that right away!"


What a treat! There are several Freddy books awaiting you!


message 49: by Drew (new) - rated it 3 stars

Drew (drewlynn) | 416 comments Gayla wrote: "I think this is pretty typical of Whitehead's fiction in general; in my opinion, at least, it isn't specific to this book. I don't know if you've read The Intuitionist, but I think he creates the same kind of distance between the reader and the protagonist Lila Mae in that novel."

That's the only other book of his I've read and that's the feeling I took away from it.


Alison Hardtmann (ridgewaygirl) | 444 comments poingu wrote: "Tina wrote: "highly readable book about a difficult topic..."

hah, June just now posted a link in the newest litfic group to this very interesting article in the Millions about "readability" and p..."


I really hated that article. It seemed to boil down to whatever the article's author read was proper literature, and everything was garbage. Tellingly, only two approved authors were women. And, I'm sorry, but Version Control was exceedingly readable. What a pompous ass.


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