Thursday, 11 July 2013

A Million Trees Dead To Tell People To Be Dicks

Well, this is an intriguing list. For all that I’ve read it more times than almost any other book (it’s certainly the only book with more than 200 pages I might have read more times than The Hobbit), I understand why people might give up on Lord of the Rings. There’s only so many elves the mind can tolerate, after all, and it’s not like Tolkien’s prose style is particularly strong. Moby Dick and Ulysses are commonly mentioned as exceptionally difficult books, and I’ve never even attempted either of them. If someone wants to adapt the Odyssey for a post-classical period, I’ll go with Ulysses 31, thanks very much. At least that has spaceships.

Atlas Shrugged is obviously the exact opposite of any kind of shock result, save the fact that it can be included in the list of classic books in the first place. Given my love of Aaron Sorkin, I can hardly claim with a straight face that obvious political hectoring isn’t for me, but a) his politics aren’t monumentally ugly, and b) the guy can write. Rand can’t claim either of these advantages.

But really, people of the world? Catch-22? What the Hell? Are you just not getting the jokes? Is it making you all sad? Were you hoping it was set during a more morally ambiguous war? What’s going on?

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