50 books to read before you die discussion

A Passage to India
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Buck (spectru) The eighth book on the 50 list, previously read in February 2017


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Jeffrey (wordsmith2294) | 26 comments Finished A Passage to India a little while ago! I wrote a full-ish review on my blog here: http://jeffreycscott.com/a-passage-to...

If you aren't up to clicking on a link, I'll summarize. I'm comparing it to A Bend in the River and The Quiet American (both on the 50 list), each stories about foreigners in less-than-developed or occupied countries, and racism ensues. I think Forster handles it better than most, feeling like an outsider himself being semi-openly gay in Victorian England. As for the story, I think he wrote about a kind of racism that we still see all over the place---subtle, systematic, and dangerous.

I enjoyed his writing style! He was delicate and showed us everything in the minds of his characters. I was sympathetic/empathetic to everyone and was still able to be critical of their choices. It really makes me want to read his novel Maurice and some of his other work!


Buck (spectru) Not bad, but certainly not great. I had trouble keeping straight the characters and their relationships with one another, especially early on. The only part of the book that held my interest was the accusation and trial of Dr. Aziz.

The most notable thing is the extreme prejudice that permeates the attitudes of the English, and also the Indians. That certainly is a commentary on the times. And there was one incident that caught my attention: When Aziz attempted to flee from being arrested, Fielding grabbed him and "shook him like a baby." Of course, we all should know exactly what it's like to shake a baby.

Quite some time ago I saw the movie of Forster's Howards End with Anthony Hopkins and found it dull. I wonder if A Room with a View is better? This one didn't encourage me to read more Forster.


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