Posted by: Tricia | Saturday, August 18, 2007

Book report

I finally sucked it up and finished The Sun Also Rises last night. And then I had to read an online study guide of the book to figure it out. But I get it now. I’m pretty thick, though. For instance, I didn’t realize that Jake was actually impotent as a result of his war wound until about halfway through the book when the word ‘impotent’ was actually used. I guess I was supposed to have figured that out a lot sooner.

If this had been assigned to me in high school, I definitely wouldn’t have finished it. When it comes down to it, I just have a hard time reading anything that’s not ‘action-packed,’ so to speak. It needs to hold my attention. It needs to evoke an emotional response in me, rather than just an intellectual one. Basically, it needs to have a lot more than just bar-hopping, shallow, mundane conversation, and outdated vernacular. (I did learn, though, that ‘tight’ meant drunk back in 1924.) Oh, and as a footnote to my previous comment about the book when I had just started it, it turns out they all do get quite drunk. A lot. It becomes clearly evident in the latter pages.

I don’t know all that much about World War I, or the time that followed. This book definitely taught me a lot about that-the ‘Lost Generation,’ as Gertrude Stein coined (something else I learned from reading this). I’ve always been a WWII buff, given that my parents were teenagers during it. And it seems to me that WWII has definitely overshadowed its predecessor in general. This has definitely sparked my interest in learning more about the first World War, and the socioeconomic aftermath…it appears to me it shouldn’t remain to be so overlooked.

Now that I’ve finally finished my inaugural look into the writings of Ernest Hemingway, my next venture will be A Farewell to Arms. I like doing things in chronological order. I had thought that TSAR was his first novel, but upon checking his Wikipedia entry, I discovered he published another novel the same year, but before TSAR, called The Torrents of Spring. It turns out Hemingway purposely wrote it so his current publisher would not accept it, thus letting Hemingway out of his contract so he could take a more lucrative deal with Scribner’s. I don’t know if I’ll bother to hunt it down, given that it really wasn’t intended for public consumption…

…I just checked the library system’s website, and there are quite a few copies floating around the metro area. I think I’ll put this one at the bottom of the list, though. I want to get a better feel for Hemingway’s more acclaimed works before I get into the more ‘obscure’ stuff.

But next for my reading enjoyment, at long last, will be A Thousand Splendid Suns. I’ve been dying to get going on it, but didnt want to abandon ol’ Hemingway. I like to finish what I start, and for once I was actually successful!

[On a technical note, for those of you who might have my blog on your RSS reader, and have noticed that the previous post I linked to above was popping up again and again as new, it’s because I’ve been messing with the HTML, trying to figure out how to do page jumps. And it’s not working for me…the link goes to the right post, but then doesn’t jump down to the part of the post I want it to. I’ve checked the code again and again, on both pages, and it still doesn’t work. Any suggestions?

Update: It turns out I didn’t check my code all that well, having a silly little space where I shouldn’t have so my codenames didn’t match up. But it works now, and I’m feeling pretty proud and excited that I just learned a new HTML trick! Go me!]

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Responses

  1. I just deleted my book club blog because i’m too busy to conduct it and no one else wanted to either. I think I want to restart it again in the future, perhaps you’d be interested in joining? I wanted it to be a forum where we all read the same book and then discussed it, but it didn’t work out that way. I like to pick other peopels brains about stuff, and you might be that way too.

  2. Hey, sounds great! Let me know if you make a definite decision.


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