Word trap

Still listening to Dorian Gray, but I’ve noticed a certain repetition of wording that happens so often it stands out. No one in this book ever sits down, they all invariably fling or throw themselves into their chairs and sofas–sometimes multiple characters in a scene.

I find myself repeating words like that, too. When I read back through something I wrote, I see the same word over and over, and I have to search for replacements for it.

Good to know even the best of authors can fall into repetitive patterns!

The quest for youth

I’ve started listening to the Picture of Dorian Gray, and it has a lot of intriguing dialogue so far.

I like that Dorian is so jealous of the painting even right from the start. That it will stay young and he will get old is such a painful idea for him, that he brings it up even a few days later, to say that the painting is already days younger than he is.

I never thought about aging when I was 20 years old… so this Dorian is quite the vain person to be worrying about it so young…

 

Love in the Time of Cholera

This was the story of love between many people over a lifetime.

There were so many little nuggets of goodness in this novel that it’s hard to give a general idea of why I liked it. I loved the description of Florintino, and found a lot of myself in him. He was also laughable at times, though, with his ridiculous ideas of love and his determination that bordered on obsession.

I enjoyed the juxtaposition of youth and age, and how their views on love differed, but the views that others took of them remained the same–they were kept apart in their youth because they were too young, but in their old age, their families try to keep them apart because they are too old for love!

Fermina has a hard/hot headedness that Florintino refuses to give in to, and it is fun and emotional to read. He is a tireless, endless lover and you can’t help but cheer for him to keep trying.

The kind of love that lets you fall for someone in your youth, and then be unable to forget about them for fifty years, even when they never talk to you or even acknowledge your existence, is difficult to imagine. But Marquez does a great job of giving me an insight, and a hint at what that might feel like.

 

Ranking Reading

I got the crazy idea recently that I would rank all the books I’ve ever read, as well as I can remember. Turns out that is just crazy, and I have no idea how to even begin sorting through the 350ish books on my goodreads. So, I’ll just start with the books I’ve read this year… but I’m not quite done with this year, so that will be a future post! However, I’m pretty sure it’s going to be between Crime and Punishment, and Lolita for best of the year. Strange to be pitting books against each other based solely on when I happened to read them, but, there you go…

 

I keep laughing

You know it’s a funny book when just thinking about it throughout the day makes you burst out laughing.

Me trying to describe it would not do justice to its hilarity, you just have to read it yourself. But… something about this kind of character is just so amusing–the just smart enough to think they are a genius guy who is actually not so bright, the delusions of grandeur, the missing of obvious social cues, the massive overestimation of their own importance–it’s just, endlessly entertaining.

And the best part is you are SHOWN all this, instead of being told. You have to see it for yourself, and when you do, it’s like ‘oh my god, this guy!’

Read it, you won’t regret it, even just the first quarter of the book is worth it already.

All kinds of love

I’ve started listening to this novel, and so far–as the title would imply–it is all about love. The book opens with one character, and we follow from him, to his wife, to his wife’s past lover, and I assume we’ll keep bouncing around like this, in a sort of meandering way through the past. It’s very enjoyable so far.

Currently we’re following Fermina and Florintino, young lovers who communicate with letters only, having only said a few words in person, even though they live in the same town . Florintino stares at Fermina for months before talking to her. It’s a love that is as restrained as it is explosive.  And she feels it for him, too, and is tormented while waiting and waiting for him to say something to her.

It’s a perfect portrait of young love, and I’m curious how their relationship will evolve over the years, since we know from the opening of the novel that Florintino professes his love again to Fermina 50 years later, days after the death of her husband.

Engaging story so far!

 

Pure genius

I’ve just started this one by Vladimir Nabokov, and already am blown away just in the first pages. This guy is pure genius, and I wonder how he’s not ranked higher than he already is even. I’m laughing almost ever page as I read this, its just so subtly brilliant.

I wonder if as many people missed the point on this one as they did Lolita. It is so difficult for people to look past the surface. They think ‘it’s about pedophilia!’ or ‘It’s about a poem!’ and that’s as far as they go.

Though I’m just at the beginning, this book seems very similar to Lolita, in that it appears to be about a manipulative narcissist with delusions of grandeur who is not nearly as smart as he thinks. Except this one is hilarious and fun instead of dark and queasy.

Loving it and can’t wait to read the next page…