Sunday, December 9, 2012

Reading Now! Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon

For some reason, I decided to pick up Gravity's Rainbow again. It's been in the queue for a long time, I don't even remember why I bought it originally. Maybe because I'd heard how important it was or how notoriously difficult it was to read. Nonetheless, once I bought it, I made the commitment to read it. I am now 375 pages into it. It has been such a slog. I thought dhalgren by Samuel R Delany (review with spoilers) was tough to read. Ha ha.

I think I've figured out partially why this is such a hassle to read. I found myself just blindly reading through without even trying to understand what's going on because otherwise I'd get upset and throw it out the window. Now that I'm nearly half done, I think I can point out some of what bothers me so. It's one thing to have a lot of characters. It's another thing to have a lot of characters that seemingly have no relevance or will never appear again. But it's a whole other thing to introduce these characters, have 20 pages of backstory that goes completely off into the ozone and then lose of track of whatever plot thread we're supposed to be on, or for it to suddenly change time and locale without transition. Not to mention it seems our main character (and possibly the entire population) is under the influence of hallucinogens.

I have spent the time and mental effort to plow through the first half, so I will finish it in one go but it's been slow going. I get through about 20 pages a day during the week, so you can do the math. That is assuming that it doesn't literally put me to sleep on the train. I've come close to nodding off more times than I'd like to admit, that should also say something, I'd say.

I would not recommend this book to anyone so far. We will see how I feel by the end. Wish me luck.

1 comment:

  1. For years, I only read non-fiction or classics (at least 95% of the time). Now, I am regaining an appreciation for good novels. Perhaps it's a result of getting old, but I no longer feel obligated to read a book that doesn't grab and hold me (I do make exceptions for short stories, however, much to my dismay - LOL). I am glad to know to stay away from this book as I have always loved good science fiction, even during my non-fiction stage. Thanx!

    ~~Esmereldan

    PS - Also loved your make-up blogs!!! Like you, I go through ups-n-downs of wearing make-up & going au naturel. Fortunately, where I live, no make-up is no big "sin". LOL But I love reading about make-up and have to rein myself in from buying, buying, buying. My biggest weakness is mascara. Right now, I have enough to do the eyelashes of an complete female army. I finally found a video that explained to me a method of putting it on that actually works well on my skimpy lashes - some make-up artist from Hollywood made it. I can't remember where I found it though since I was just surfing. It seems the "trick" is to really pile on the product with a back-n-forth motion at the base of the top lashes, even if it means working on them for 2 or 3 minutes each and without letting it dry, then, towards the end of that time, stroking upward with the brush which will extend the lashes. I have been impressed at the difference it has made.

    Thanks again!

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