Saturday, November 25, 2006

Arthur & George

Ok - book review number one!
So I just finished Arthur & George, by Julian Barnes (actually I finished it in bed last night). Julian Barnes is one of my 'solid foundation' kinda authors - always worth reading, wrote some of the best books I have ever read, but somehow slips off my mental list at times. And I don't think I own anything other than Flaubert's Parrot. But lately I have read quite a few (thanks, Aylesbury Library!) including England, England, which was amazing and wonderful and great! All teh good bits of Barnes at his postmodern-satirist best.
So anyway, I came to Arthur & George only a few books after England, England (obviously, I am in section B at the library right now!). And I have to say, this book is ....I am not sure. I am more uncertain about it than I usually am, usually I have an opinion ready to go, even at halfway through the first chapter! So I will try and explain a bit.
While I was reading the book, I loved it. Barnes writes in a lovely, clear, readable, descriptive way, I always enjoy the process of reading each of his sentences. And it did take me a while to get through the 356 pages of A&G, due to general life stuff & some excessive knitting (what good is one sock?). But when I wasn't reading it, I wasn't burning to get back to it. Somehow, I felt like an observer of the story, rather than getting wrapped up in it. I didn't burn to find out what was going to happen. And interestingly, not much actually did happen. The whole 'birth to death' kind of thing wore me out a little - the story happens in the middle of these men's lives, and yes, Arthur Conan Doyle was an interesting man (but so was George....) but their story is most interesting when their lives intersect. Unfortunately there is alot of other stuff. Arthur's interactions with Anson, for example, are dull. That's all I have to say about that (sorry Julian). Generally, its great. A good read. But I think he has better reads to be read. I know this isn't all that academic or technical, but I think these book ramblings will be pretty informal. Its my blog, I'll do what I want!
I can't think of any pictures to post about this. So sorry about all the text!

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