July 12th, 2006

pissy red dragon from tammylee

(no subject)

There was a welcome back barbecue Saturday for shiny_monkey out west a ways, and casting about for good bus reading (assuming I'd be able to read on the bus) I took my last unread Brust, Orca. Turned out to be an inspired choice. How brisk and business-like Brust is, even when doing his sometimes confusing braided narratives. I'd put off reading Orca from some confused idea that it was one of the non-Taltos narrated ones that don't work nearly as well as the I-style. (Brust has this in common with Mary Renault, by and large. The Paarfi ones I call pastiche and don't count.) But someone having a hissy fit about the unfairness of authors keeping secrets from their readers, the swine, cited Orca as a possible instance of same: and the possibility of having a secret revealed gave me the incentive to read. I like authors who keep secrets from their readers, as long as we find out what the secret is eventually. If they keep a mysterious silence, like John Fowles, I'm tempted to write them off as fakers and/or pretentious teases.

The change of TO scenery was welcome, and the change of reading material more so, because I'd been reading Graham Greene.

I read a bunch of his novels in hospital in France, they being about the only English books the French bookstores had, or perhaps the only thing my cousins thought I might want to read. (I'd been travelling with War and Peace, and Greene was indeed a pleasant change.) I remember nothing of them now, but that might be due to, well, reading them in hospital flat on my back in traction. The only impression I retain is an odd kind of strangling claustrophobia.
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