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Thursday, 31 July 2014

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Alex

I'm glad that you enjoyed this. I thought when I had to give up on it that it might be more your sort of book. I can't pinpoint what it was that annoyed me so much but perhaps I should be glad that there are some authors I find unreadable or I would have even more difficulty reading everything I wan than I do now.

Helen

Hello Alex, I had completely forgotten how you and A Heart So White hadn't got on. I went back to see what you had written... yes, it does indeed ramble, and I loved that, I found it full of insight, but I can absolutely see that it could also infuriate. The ramblings do fit together, but that isn't clear for quite a while. Absolutely agree that if we didn't find some authors unreadable we would disappear beneath our own TBRs...

Violet

I tried to read this but ended up abandoning it. I know a lot of people love his writing, so maybe I need to give it another go. Maybe it's one of those books we need to be in the mood to read? I just felt impatient and frustrated with it because it didn't seem to be going anywhere.

Richard

Helen, this is the most exciting (i.e. for me to read) Marías post I've seen in ages. Thanks so much for contributing it to Spanish Lit Month! The irony, such as it is, is that I liked this novel much less than Marías' "Tomorrow in the Battle Think on Me" which is similar to it in some respects. In any event, I'm glad you enjoyed the read so much; I hosted a group read of the "Your Face Tomorrow" trilogy a few years back and strongly encourage you to give that a try if you haven't already. It's probably my favorite work by him, but he's written so many things that have moved me over the years. A wonderful writer.

Helen

Violet, it's an unusual book because it takes so long for the pieces to fit together, but if you like the writing (and maybe you don't?) then it repays keeping faith with it. I also think that you need to be in the mood for it, and I did put it down sometimes for a day or two, much as I loved it, because it did require energy I didn't always have.

Richard, my ego is exploding, thank you! This is the first Marías novel I've read and I will be reading more - thanks for the recommendation, I will hunt down the trilogy. I can see he's a really special writer.

litlove

What a wonderful review, Helen! It's fabulous. I have this book to read on my shelves, having enjoyed Marias's All Souls several years ago. I'm looking forward to it even more now, makes me think of Marguerite Duras with its triangular relationships and repetitions (which is a good thing, btw).

Helen

Now I've never read a word written by Marguerite Duras and this makes me think that I should. Meanwhile, I'd love to know what you make of this; I have a feeling you'd really like it, litlove.

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