Saturday, March 3, 2012

The Right Book at the Right Time

So I'm reading Daniel Martin right now by John Fowles; who is a long standing favorite author of mine.  It's huge, the pacing is well controlled and like all other books by him I've read, it's a book you expect to spend some time with as opposed to blowing through in a weekend.  Fowles was English and not of my generation.  It has taken me a while to figure out why I think I have such stumbling blocks with him concerning his writing.

I have a handful of reading disabilities and Fowles syntax is not always 'American' (which is not a fault) added to which he is really good at structuring his words to evoke certain thoughts and feelings in his readers.  My biggest problem in reading anything is seeing what is actually written as opposed to what I want to be there: Fowles gives me fits.  (You should hear me read aloud sometimes: it funny to hear someone else go back and read what was actually written instead of what I read.)  That said, I think he needs about a tenth of the book's overall length before he hits his stride and things start to flow, or perhaps that's just me.

I've spoken before about reading a great book at a time when your mind isn't in it.  Daniel Martin is exactly what I need to be reading right now.  I've been in a rut and this book has made me fall back in love with the use of words and language to achieve a response from a reader.  It's not the greatest thing ever committed to paper; it's merely the right book that I need to be reading right now.

Oh, and while not the greatest thing ever it does happen to be really good.

5 comments:

Carole said...

Interesting post. The best non-fiction book I have read for years was Better http://caroleschatter.blogspot.co.nz/2011/11/better-by-atul-gawande.html

Parrish Lantern said...

This book seems to have inspired you as The savage Detectives did to me. Loving the right book at the right time idea and it definitely chimes with my own believes, plus anything that reignites that love of the written word has to be magical, great post, thanks

Parrish Lantern said...

A bit presumptuous of me to poetry spam you, but thought I'd try & introduce you to a poet that I adore, with the hope this will provide a key to explore more.
Thanks

“Little Johnny’s Confession”

This morning
being rather young and foolish
I borrowed a machinegun my father
had left hidden since the war, went out,
and eliminated a number of small enemies.
Since then I have not returned home.

This morning
swarms of police with trackerdogs
wander about the city
with my description printed
in their minds, asking:
‘Have you seen him?
He is seven years old,
likes Pluto, Mighty Mouse
and Biffo the Bear,
have you seen him, anywhere?’

This morning
sitting alone in a strange playground
muttering you’ve blundered, you’ve blundered
over and over to myself
I work out my next move
but cannot move.
The trackerdogs will sniff me out,
they have my lollypops.”

poem by Brian Patten (1946 – present)

Chad Hull said...

"Poetry Spam" I love it! I'd like to think this is a new term, a new concept that only applies to me.

I enjoyed that and will look into more from Mr Patten.

Thank you for sharing; feel free to poetry spam me anytime.

Parrish Lantern said...

not sure if poetry spam is purely my idea, I adapted it from something I saw on Tv from america & that was where someone went round sewing labels into new garment which had a poem on & have been doing it awhile now. If you like Brian Patten, check out a group of Poets called the Liverpool poets - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liverpool_poets