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The Crying of Lot 49
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1001 Monthly Group Read > May {2020} Discussion -- THE CRYING OF LOT 49 by Thomas Pychon

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Sean (fordest) | 762 comments Mod
The most prevalent thought as I was reading this book was how much it reminded me of Vonnegut. It was my first Pychon so I really had no idea what to expect. I really really liked Vonnegut when I was in high school. But since then, having re-read one, and reading a new (to me) one, I am not so sure anymore. I think I liked the strangeness and the uniqueness when I was strange and unique (ok, maybe I still am.) But wait, this isn't about Vonnegut...

What I liked most about this book was the way that the search for Trystero paralleled the play. There were so many tie ins and even though the whole idea was extremely odd and bizarre and unlikely and surreal, I was very interested in finding out what happened. Then the end happened and I was left with an open book with no pages left and only..... THAT ENDING!!!

I can't say that I really cared about any of the characters, not even Oedipa. But I cared about they mystery. I cared about the hidden meaning of the whole thing. I think I liked it when I finished it (thinking back on it) more than while I was reading it. It was about the destination rather than the journey. Which is ironic considering where I was left when I was done....

An odd book that I am glad I read.


message 3: by Bryan--The Bee’s Knees (last edited May 15, 2020 03:56PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Bryan--The Bee’s Knees (theindefatigablebertmcguinn) | 629 comments I read this several years ago--I've never really warmed up to Pynchon, though I've tried several times. I started but didn't finish Vineland and Bleeding Edge, and I finished this one and V.

Pynchon's very clever--he's kind of in his own class, but guys like Robert Coover and Don DeLillo remind me of him. As far as what I've been able to pick up, a lot of people that enjoy Pynchon really dig all the references and hints and potentialities in his books...the mystery. I think that's the part I've never been able to appreciate--I don't need a clear-cut story, but I look for something that makes a comment on the world outside of itself. Granted, I've never read Gravity's Rainbow, which is often considered Pynchon's masterpiece (I plan to), and which may be an entirely different kind of book, but Lot 49 and V. just seemed too self-referential


S.L. Berry | 93 comments I am not really sure what to think about The Crying of Lot 49. On one hand, the mixing of the many different contexts, situations, time periods and people made the novel appear as if it had been written while high. I enjoyed the underlying story of an executrix struggle to learn why she was selected and how (or if) to carry out the terms of the will and followed it fairly well in spite of the tangents that sometimes led nowhere and Pynchon's eccentricity in language (keep a dictionary handy). I don't know that I would have read the book if it had not been on the list. I could see a game like Dungeons & Dragons being made out it.


readingpenguin14 (richr14) | 21 comments I needed a few days to gather my thoughts about this book. At first, I was bewildered and befuddled about where the book was going, it is a bizarre read with so many trails and turns. After a few days, I realised that I actually loved it in a unexplainable reason. It is a surreal and satire mystery which will leave you thinking for days afterward. This novel, for me, will require a reread in the future.


message 6: by Suki (last edited Jun 10, 2020 01:26PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Suki St Charles (goodreadscomsuki_stcharles) | 14 comments This was my first Pynchon, and I loved it. (view spoiler) I'm sure parts of the book sailed right over my head-- I'll definitely be giving this one a reread in a year or two.


Debra Schnitzer | 6 comments readingpenguin14 wrote: "I needed a few days to gather my thoughts about this book. At first, I was bewildered and befuddled about where the book was going, it is a bizarre read with so many trails and turns. After a few d..."I agree. I will probably reread this book again. It was difficult to read but some of the story line was interesting and thought provoking.


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