Housekeeping~Marilynne Robinson

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Just finished this. A rum one. When it proceeds with action and dialogue it's so successful and evocative, with such a sly economy of emotive language, but too often I also felt myself wading through the many, often contrived, and often infuriating reflections of the narrator. If you went through this novel and took out every single single it would be so very improved. It tries to tell, so copiously, when it achieves everything it needs to through showing. I suppose this is a commonplace pitfall of debut novels; I'm told the Gilead uses the hokey-simile voice as well, but much more appropriately

imago, Monday, 6 January 2020 12:53 (one month ago) link

Every single simile, even. Some of them work, but to be safer they all need to go

imago, Monday, 6 January 2020 12:54 (one month ago) link

Bookkeeping

I suppose there's an argument that the unrestrained figurative tower is redolent of the unrestrainedly Other lifestyle our heroines fall into

imago, Monday, 6 January 2020 12:57 (one month ago) link

I didn't really get on with Housekeeping, possibly for similar reasons; as for Gilead I can't recall how simile prone the immensely likeable narrator is but concur with Alfred above that it is very different from Housekeeping, and an unforced masterpiece.

Paperbag raita (ledge), Monday, 6 January 2020 13:49 (one month ago) link

I said that, eh?

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 6 January 2020 14:51 (one month ago) link


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