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Thread: Not-so-Classic Classics

  1. #11
    Peeking In Duxxy's Avatar
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    The Grapes of Wrath - bored me to tears.

    I refuse to read anything recommended by Oprah.. can't she find a happy, uplifting book to share?? sheesh
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  2. #12
    NI FORT fan Belfastgirl's Avatar
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    Isn't it funny how some of us are really turned off authors at school. I think it's all the in depth analysis. You're meant to ENJOY reading.I only re discovered George Orwell by reading 1984 and Brighton Rock Had to read Power and the Glory when I was 15, and the subject was just SOOO boring!
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  3. #13
    eny
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    I really loved Hardy . I think his going on and on brought you such a clear picture that any of his works would be a snap to write a screenplay from.

    I hate anything by Hemingway . Better drunken ramblings can be found with Edgar Allan Poe or Oscar Wilde. Another ??? for me was Don Quixote . Maybe it just didn't translate well to English.

  4. #14
    FORT Fogey Salome's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eny
    I hate anything by Hemingway. Better drunken ramblings can be found with Edgar Allan Poe or Oscar Wilde.
    I don't like Hemingway, either. There may be something there, occasionally, but why are his books considered classics out of all the wonderful writing that exists in our world? I just don't understand. Something to do with his stylistic influence, maybe?

    Will anyone kill me if I mention Finnegans Wake? I might try it when I'm 50+, but that book must be impossible for 99.99% of English readers.

  5. #15
    FORT Fogey nausicaa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salome
    Will anyone kill me if I mention Finnegans Wake? I might try it when I'm 50+, but that book must be impossible for 99.99% of English readers.
    No. There's probably only half a dozen people alive who've breached that imprenetrable fortress, and likely all of them are white-haired specialists at Oxbridge. S'not for plebes like us, I tell you.

    I don't like Hemingway, either. There may be something there, occasionally, but why are his books considered classics out of all the wonderful writing that exists in our world? I just don't understand. Something to do with his stylistic influence, maybe?
    Hemingway is not my favorite writer neither, but I'm just as leery of shortchanging him as overpraising. To be fair, there is always something there - he was a big fan of "the truest sentence you know", so yeah, in part it was the style, the language that in lacking affectation stripped emotions down to the bone (it's sort of but not really like New Wave editing. The composition's wierd, it's a cultivated taste, but the long takes and the jump shots and the loose narratives and the ambiguity invite pathos and introspection if you're open to the whole thing, and don't think it's a dumb idea to begin with. ) And, you know, he did shill the whole "Man adrift in a bankrupt society, struggling to shore up vestigial values" thing of the lost generation, so yeah, maybe that's important as well.

    ETA: Everyone should start with A Moveable Feast, if A Farewell to Arms hasn't already ruined them.
    Last edited by nausicaa; 01-01-2005 at 11:00 PM.

  6. #16
    Nerds Just Wanna Have Fun Boredom's Avatar
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    I wasn't a really big fan of Beowulf... it went off on a few too many tangents, in my opinion.

    While I don't love Hemingway... I thought that Of Mice and Men wasn't too horrible. His style takes some getting used to, but the stories aren't too bad.

  7. #17
    FORT Fogey Salome's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nausicaa
    ETA: Everyone should start with A Moveable Feast, if A Farewell to Arms hasn't already ruined them.
    A-ha! A Farewell to Arms has ruined me, and I've never met a die-hard Hemingway fan to throw me another novel and bail me out. (Come to think of it, maybe "I'm Nobody, Who are You?" is the reason I struggle with Emily Dickinson... Is turning students off literature the objective of California's education system?)


    Quote Originally Posted by Boredom
    While I don't love Hemingway... I thought that Of Mice and Men wasn't too horrible.
    Well, that's because it's Steinbeck!
    Last edited by Salome; 01-02-2005 at 04:16 AM.

  8. #18
    Anarchist AJane's Avatar
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    Gawd...The Old Man and the Sea...most overrated book ever. I must say I didn't mind The Sun Also Rises, but that's all the Hemingway I can stomach. I don't care for Steinbeck, either - we were subjected to Of Mice and Men and East of Eden in school, and I yawned my way through them.

    Most underrated author that we were force-fed in school - W. Somerset Maugham, IMO. I loved both Of Human Bondage and The Razor's Edge (good movies made out of those novels as well).

    If I was stranded on a desert island and could have only one book, any of Jane Austen's novels would do just fine. Her work is just brilliant.

    Dux, one of Oprah's recommendations is Maeve Binchy's Tara Road, and if you haven't read it, I'll mail it to you. Just ignore those *classic* selections of hers.
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  9. #19
    a star is born Katelyn&Carmen's Avatar
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    I just recently read Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad for my AP English class. Ugh-- I hated it. It took me forever to read a single page in that book because Conrad does not waste a single word. I think the thing that made me hate it so much was that we have to focus on details in that class and his whole book is nothing but description. I spent too long trying to figure out what's important and solving some of his puzzling sentences than I did just enjoying the story. I will forever be haunted by that stupid rivets description after having to write a mini-essay on the importance of that passage.
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  10. #20
    Nerds Just Wanna Have Fun Boredom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salome

    Well, that's because it's Steinbeck!
    OH MY GOSH! I'm so unbelievably stupid! Now I wish I could edit my post... I don't know why I always get those two confused */threadjack*

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